United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
WILLIAM C. GRIESBACH, CHIEF JUDGE.
Marcus Harris, who is currently serving a state prison
sentence at Dodge Correctional Institution and representing
himself, filed a complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983,
alleging that his civil rights were violated. This matter
comes before the court on Plaintiff's motion for leave to
proceed without prepaying the full filing fee and to screen
to Proceed without Prepayment of the Filing Fee
has requested leave to proceed without prepayment of the full
filing fee (in forma pauperis). A prisoner plaintiff
proceeding in forma pauperis is required to pay the
full amount of the $350.00 filing fee over time. See
28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1). Plaintiff has filed a certified
copy of his prison trust account statement for the six-month
period immediately preceding the filing of his complaint, as
required under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(2), and has been
assessed and paid an initial partial filing fee of $17.92.
Plaintiff's motion for leave to proceed without prepaying
the filing fee will be granted.
of the Complaint
court is required 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 or portion thereof if the
prisoner has raised 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). A claim is legally frivolous when it lacks an
arguable basis either in law or in fact. Denton v.
Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 31 (1992); Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989); Hutchinson ex
rel. Baker v. Spink, 126 F.3d 895, 900 (7th Cir. 1997).
state a cognizable claim under the federal notice pleading
system, Plaintiff is required to provide a “short and
plain statement of the claim showing that [he] is entitled to
relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). The complaint must
contain sufficient factual matter “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)). The court accepts the factual
allegations as true and liberally construes them in the
plaintiff's favor. Turley v. Rednour, 729 F.3d
645, 651 (7th Cir. 2013). Nevertheless, the complaint's
allegations “must be enough to raise a right to relief
above the speculative level.” Twombly, 550
U.S. at 555 (citation omitted).
of the Complaint
claims that he asked Defendant Correctional Officer Jester to
be moved to a different cell on multiple occasions because he
did not want to slip and fall on the water leaking from his
malfunctioning sink. When Defendant inspected the sink in
Plaintiff's cell, water spilled all over her and the
floor. Defendant did not provide Plaintiff with any supplies
to clean up the water and did not assist him in doing so.
Defendant advised Plaintiff that she would put in a work
order for the sink. An hour or two later, Defendant told the
inmates that it was time to eat. Plaintiff again asked to be
moved to a different cell, and Defendant responded that he
would not be assigned to a different cell. When Plaintiff
returned to his cell after his meal, he slipped and fell on
his back. After his fall, Plaintiff was taken to the Health
Services Unit to see a doctor. Plaintiff seeks compensation
for the injuries he sustained from the fall and the damage
caused by the malfunctioning sink.
Eighth Amendment prohibits “cruel and unusual
punishments” and imposes a duty on prison officials to
take reasonable measures to guarantee an inmate's safety
and to ensure that inmates receive adequate medical care.
Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 832 (1994);
see U.S. Const. amend. VIII. A prison official's
“deliberate indifference” to a prisoner's
medical needs or to a substantial risk of serious harm
violates the Eighth Amendment. See Farmer, 511 U.S.
at 828. An inmate's claim for deliberate indifference
must establish “(1) an objectively serious medical
condition; and (2) an official's deliberate indifference
to that condition.” Gomez v. Randle, 680 F.3d
859, 865 (7th Cir. 2012) (citation omitted). Deliberate
indifference requires more than negligence; it requires that
the official know of, yet disregard, an excessive risk to the
inmate's health or safety. Farmer, 511 U.S. at
claim sounds in negligence rather than in deliberate
indifference. Generally, a wet floor presents “little
risk of serious harm to inmates, and thus allowing a wet
floor to go unremedied would not violate the Eighth
Amendment.” Watkins v. Lancor, 558 Fed.Appx.
662, 665 (7th Cir. 2014); see also Bell v. Ward, 88
Fed.Appx. 125 (7th Cir. 2004) (affirming the dismissal of a
slip-and-fall claim on § 1915A review because
accumulation of water on prison floor did not present a risk
of serious injury); Carroll v. DeTella, 255 F.3d
470, 472 (7th Cir. 2001) (“[F]ailing to provide a
maximally safe environment, one completely free from . . .
safety hazards, is not [a constitutional violation].”).
Even if the allegations in Plaintiff's complaint suggest
that Defendant was negligent, those allegations are
insufficient to support a claim of deliberate indifference.
As a result, Plaintiff cannot proceed on a deliberate
indifference claim against Defendant.
also asserts state law claims against the defendants. Because
the court has dismissed all of his federal law claims, it
declines to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over his state
law claims pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(3).
Plaintiff's state law claims will be dismissed without
prejudice so that he may pursue them in state court.
IS THEREFORE ORDERED that Plaintiff's motion for
leave to proceed in forma ...