United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
DECISION AND ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION
FOR LEAVE TO PROCEED WITHOUT PREPAYMENT OF THE FILING FEE
(DKT. NO. 2), DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO APPOINT
COUNSEL (DKT. NO. 12) AND SCREENING THE COMPLAINT
PAMELA PEPPER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
plaintiff, who is representing himself, is a Wisconsin State
inmate. He filed this lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §1983,
dkt. no. 1; he also filed a motion for leave to proceed
without prepayment of the filing fee, dkt. no. 2, and a
motion to appoint counsel, dkt. no. 12. This order resolves
the plaintiff's motions and screens his complaint.
Motion for Leave to Proceed without Prepayment of the Filing
Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) applies to this case
because the plaintiff was in custody when he filed his
complaint. 28 U.S.C. §1915. The PLRA allows an
incarcerated plaintiff to proceed with his lawsuit without
prepaying the case filing fee, if he meets certain
conditions. One of those conditions is that he pay an initial
partial filing fee. 28 U.S.C. §1915(b). On December 7,
2017, the court ordered the plaintiff to pay an initial
partial filing fee of $9.38. Dkt. No. 9. The court received a
payment of $50 toward the filing fee on December 21, 2018.
The court will grant the plaintiff's motion to proceed
without prepayment of the full case filing fee, and will
allow him to pay the remainder of the fee over time in the
manner explained at the end of this order.
Screening of the Plaintiff's Complaint
requires the court to screen complaints brought by prisoners
seeking relief against a governmental entity or officer or
employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. §1915A(a).
The court must dismiss a complaint if the plaintiff raises
claims that are legally “frivolous or malicious,
” that fail to state a claim upon which relief may be
granted, or that seek monetary relief from a defendant who is
immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. §1915A(b).
state a claim, a complaint must contain sufficient factual
matter, accepted as true, “that is plausible on its
face.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
(2009) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). “A claim has facial plausibility
when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows a court
to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the misconduct alleged.” Id. (citing
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556).
proceed under 42 U.S.C. §1983, a plaintiff must allege
that 1) someone deprived him of a right secured by the
Constitution or laws of the United States; and 2) that person
was acting under color of state law. Buchanan-Moore v.
Cty. of Milwaukee, 570 F.3d 824, 827 (7th Cir. 2009)
(citing Kramer v. Vill. of N. Fond du Lac, 384 F.3d
856, 861 (7th Cir. 2004)); see also Gomez v. Toledo,
446 U.S. 635, 640 (1980). The court gives a pro se
plaintiff's allegations, “however inartfully
pleaded, ” a liberal construction. See Erickson v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (quoting Estelle v.
Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976)).
The Plaintiff's Allegations
plaintiff has sued John and Jane Does, Timothy Lindquist and
Captain Wally Bumps. Dkt. No. 1 at 1.
plaintiff alleges that in August 2016, he was placed in
observation status at the Wisconsin Resource Center (he does
not say who placed him there). Dkt. No. 1 at 2. He states
that, about a week later, he started hallucinating and
hitting his head against the concrete floor. Id.
About an hour after he started banging his head, a captain
(the plaintiff does not identify the captain by name) came to
his door and asked if he was okay. Id. The plaintiff
states that he did not acknowledge the captain, but kept
hitting his head against the floor; the plaintiff explains
that his forehead was bleeding. Id. The plaintiff
asserts that the captain did not order anyone to secure the
plaintiff or place him in restraints. Id. at 2-3.
the plaintiff began to commit self-harm by attempting to
remove his left eye from its socket with his fingers.
Id. The plaintiff states that John Doe staff members
initially laughed and made jokes, telling the plaintiff that
he couldn't remove his eye and he looked like a fool.
Id. The plaintiff states, however, that he actually
removed the eye; he says that that is when staff began to
react. Id. The plaintiff says that it was not until
hours later that the plaintiff received medical attention.
Id. The plaintiff says is no longer able to see out
of the left eye. Id.
plaintiff asserts that he was hallucinating and having a
“psycho-affective episode, ” and that the
defendants did not protect him from himself. Id. He
seeks punitive and compensatory damages. Id. at 4.