United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
Stadtmueller, U.S. District Judge.
Rodney Bowman, who is confined at the Kettle Moraine
Correctional Institution, filed a pro se civil
rights case under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging that the
defendants violated his constitutional rights when he was
confined at the Oneida County Jail (the “Jail”).
This Order resolves Plaintiff's motion for leave to
proceed without prepaying the filing fee and screens his
complaint. This case was previously assigned to Magistrate
Judge David E. Jones. However, because not all parties have
had the opportunity to consent to magistrate judge
jurisdiction, the case was reassigned to a district judge for
entry of this order dismissing the case.
Motion for Leave to Proceed without Prepaying the Filing
Prison Litigation Reform Act applies to this case because
Plaintiff was incarcerated when he filed his complaint. 28
U.S.C. § 1915. That law allows a court to give an
incarcerated plaintiff the ability to proceed with his case
without prepaying the civil case filing fee, as long as he
meets certain conditions. One of those conditions is that
Plaintiff pay an initial partial filing fee. 28 U.S.C. §
1915(b). Once Plaintiff pays the initial partial filing fee,
the Court may allow him to pay the balance of the $350 filing
fee over time, through deductions from his prisoner account.
2, 2019, Magistrate Judge Jones ordered Plaintiff to pay an
initial partial filing fee of $12.66. (Docket #7). Plaintiff
paid that fee on May 16, 2019. Therefore, the Court will
grant his motion for leave to proceed without prepaying the
filing fee. He must pay the remainder of the filing fee over
time in the manner explained at the end of this Order.
Screening the Complaint
Federal Screening Standard
Court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners
seeking relief against a governmental entity or an 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). To 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 Atl. 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).
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must
allege that: 1) he was deprived of a right secured by the
Constitution or laws of the United States; and 2) the
defendant 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)).
Allegations in the Complaint
was confined at the Jail when he filed the complaint. (Docket
#1 at 1). On May 28, 2019, he notified the Court that he had
been transferred to the Kettle Moraine Correctional
Institution. (Docket #8).
is a state prisoner who was temporarily housed at the Jail.
(Docket #1 at 3, 4). He “questions the safety standards
of facility procedures and operations” at the Jail.
Id. at 3. According to Plaintiff, the east cell/unit
bed structures are missing ladders and cross bars to prevent
inmates from accidental injury. Prisoners assigned to upper
bunks in the east cell/unit use the toilet or sink to climb
up to upper bunk. Alternatively, inmates sleep on the floor
to avoid potential injury. Inmates experience these hazardous
conditions and have had injuries due to the inadequate
assembly of bunk beds. Recently, Plaintiff witnessed an
inmate fall from an upper bed. The inmate severely injured
his left leg and knee, and he was transported to the
states that the Jail's “housing, feeding, and
equipment usage used by state/county inmates for safety and
prevention of overall facility cell/units” should be
upgraded. Id. at 5. He brings this case seeking
“investigation and inspection for operation
review.” Id. For relief, Plaintiff seeks an
injunction ordering an investigation of the Jail's
housing conditions and enforcement of an order to correct
hazardous conditions and prevent use of out-of-date