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Quiles v. Haines

United States District Court, W.D. Wisconsin

October 8, 2019

NICASIO CUEVAS QUILES, III, SCOTT ANDRASTEK, CARLOS ABADIA, RAYMOND CODY, TERENCE BREWER, STEVEN JILES, ANTHONY STENSON, THOMAS HILL, CHARLES E. HENNINGS and SEAN HATCH Plaintiffs,
v.
TIM HAINES, RUSSELL BAUSCH, LISA PETTERA, JOHN DOE I, JOHN DOE II, JOHN DOE III, MS. KRACHEY, MS. BARTELS, MS. JAIME SALINAS and JOHN DOE IV Defendants.

          OPINION AND ORDER

          William M. Conley District Judge.

         Pro se plaintiffs Nicasio Cuevas Quiles, III, Scott Andrastek, Carlos Abadia, Raymond Cody, Terence Brewer, Steven Jiles, Anthony Stenson, Thomas Hill, Charles E. Hennings and Sean Hatch are or were incarcerated at Prairie Du Chien Correctional Institution (“PDCI”), and allege in this lawsuit an array of claims against various PDCI employees. Because plaintiffs are prisoners seeking redress from “officer[s] or employee[s] of a governmental entity, ” the court is required to screen their complaint. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Since plaintiffs' complaint fails to satisfy the pleading requirements of Rules 20 and 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, at least as currently written, the court must dismiss the complaint without prejudice, giving plaintiffs the opportunity to file an amended complaint that corrects the deficiencies described below.

         Plaintiffs have also filed a motion for a preliminary injunction and temporary restraining order. Because their motion is both procedurally and substantively deficient, the court must deny that motion without prejudice as well.

         Finally, since multiple plaintiffs appear to be proceeding on separate, unique issues, the court provides specific instructions about how to submit any proposed, amended complaint and other filings that comply with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.

         SUMMARY OF ALLEGATIONS[1]

         A. Defendants

         Plaintiffs name eleven defendants, all of whom were allegedly employed at all relevant times by the Wisconsin Department of Corrections at PDCI. The plaintiffs list seven named defendants: Tim Haines, former Warden; Kevin Semanko, Deputy Warden; Russel Bausch, Security Director; Lisa Pettera, Program Director and ADA Supervisor; Ms. Krachey, Unit Manager; Ms. Bartels, Health Services Unit Manager; and Jaime Salinas, Health Services Nurse. Additionally, plaintiffs have named four “John Doe” defendants.

         B. Conditions of Confinement

         Plaintiffs' main concerns appear to be about the conditions of their confinement at PDCI. Specifically, they allege that: they have been exposed to asbestos, lead, radium and black mold; the water supply is contaminated with lead and gross alpha and rust particles; and they have been deprived of sanitary living conditions and access to cleaning supplies to prevent the spread of disease and bacteria. Plaintiffs also assert generally that defendants' “efforts to control the risk of exposure to said conditions are inadequate.” (Compl. (dkt. #1) ¶ 26.)

         Plaintiffs assert that exposure to asbestos causes cancer and generally poses an unreasonable risk of serious damage to their future health. More specifically, they allege that defendant Tim Haines, PDCI's former warden, knew for years that asbestos was in the prison and affected the prison's air quality, and also that the prison was in violation of state health codes.

         With regards to the water at PDCI, plaintiffs claim that the lead laterals contaminate the water supply with lead, radium, gross alpha particles, and rust. These contaminants allegedly create a daily risk of poisoning and put them at risk for cancer and blindness. Plaintiffs further allege that “defendants” have knowledge of the lead laterals and contaminated water supply. Plaintiffs have filed grievances and discussed their concerns with “PDCI medical staff, ” but to no avail. Finally, plaintiffs note that PDCI employees are allowed to bring in their own bottled drinking water.

         Plaintiffs also claim that “[d]efendants knowingly have exposed inmates and prisoners with[in] PDCI to ‘black mold.'” (Compl. (dkt. #1) ¶ 32.) They assert that “[d]efendants' actions of exposing inmates and prisoners to mold within the institution have caused health issues similar to a 2014 report by the Institute of Medicine on mold exposure.” (Id.) They reference a number of sources to explain the harmful effects of mold exposure and claim that, by exposing plaintiffs' to mold, defendants have failed to “follow health initiatives established by agencies such as the EPA and CDC.” (Id. ¶ 33.) Finally, they claim that defendants acknowledged the presence of mold within PDCI yet said that an inspection was not necessary after telephonic discussions with the Wisconsin Department of Health.

         C. Medical Care

         Plaintiffs additionally claim that they have been denied proper medical care. They assert that defendants have failed to provide enough medical staff to meet the needs of the population at PDCI. Plaintiffs also seem to express concern over the privacy of their medical records and the handling of medications by correctional officers, but again do so in only abstract terms and do not recount any particular instances in which the alleged violations occurred.

         D. Other Concerns

         Plaintiffs also list a number of other concerns that they have in the broadest of strokes, including the mismanagement of funds, arbitrary denial of the exhaustion of administrative remedies, corruption, employment discrimination and ...


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