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Green v. Johnson

United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Paducah

January 31, 2018




         This is a pro se civil rights action brought by a convicted prisoner pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The Court has granted Plaintiff Vance Carter Green leave to proceed in forma pauperis. This matter is before the Court for screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. For the reasons set forth below, the action will be dismissed.


         Plaintiff is incarcerated at Fulton County Detention Center (FCDC). He names four FCDC employees as Defendants in this action - Chief Deputy #1 Jeffery Johnson, in both his official and individual capacities; and Deputies Jim Eakes, Jamie Alexander, and DeAndre Harmon, in their official capacities only.

         In the complaint, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants Eakes, Alexander, and Harmon placed him in segregation and subjected him to an “unlawful strip search” on July 20, 2017, “without an incident report.” Plaintiff states that he was released from isolation on August 28, 2017. He writes: “39 days were spent in segregation with no proof or investigation done on the allegations made by an outside civilian party. Who was found to not have made the phone call on the night of July 20, 2017. Another person made the call.” Plaintiff continues:

No E.P.O. violated, no cell phone found to be used. I was placed in seg. for 39 days, lost my job which earned me credit for goodtime for early release. Also missed chance to complete M.R.T. which was another 90 days goodtime gain. Had proper procedure been followed none of this would have taken place.

         Plaintiff has attached to his complaint the four inmate “memoranda” that he filed as a result of the allegations set forth above. The first was filed on July 26, 2017, and states: “I'd like to know when I can go back to cell 221 and resume my normal routine.” In the staff comment section, it is written: “When you give me the cell phone I will think about it.” The second memorandum was filed by Plaintiff on July 28, 2017, and states:

There is no cell phone for me to give you. I had someone I know from the street text her for me because I wanted to call our son for my birthday. What happened from there . . . I get accused of having a cell phone. If you will allow me to show you how vindictive this woman is you will know she is only using you as a pawn to cause me grief. I can you show you she's a liar. I've lost my job and miss my chance at MRT because of this. I ask that you allow me to prove my side.

         The staff comments section of the memorandum states: “The problem with this statement is we have other proof of her story. I suggest you think long & hard & then tell us the truth.” Plaintiff filed the third memoranda on August 8, 2017. He states: “I request protective custody from general population and FCDC staff alike for the duration of my stay here at FCDC.” In response, a staff member has written: “PC from what - you texted someone from a cell phone - jail staff didn't do that.” Finally, in Plaintiff's fourth memoranda, which Plaintiff filed on September 4, 2017, he writes: “I need the incident report from 20-July-17 approx. 8 p.m. concerning the call from dispatch stating that [someone] called saying I violated an EPO by calling her from a cell phone.” The staff comments section states: “I don't see an incident report on 7/20/17.”

         Plaintiff concludes his complaint by stating “I believe this violates my civil rights as cruel and unusual punishment, unlawful imprisonment, & also subjected to unlawful strip search on camera.”

         As relief, Plaintiff seeks compensatory and punitive damages.


         Because Plaintiff is a prisoner seeking relief against governmental entities, officers, and/or employees, this Court must review the instant action under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Under § 1915A, the trial court must review the complaint and dismiss the complaint, or any portion of the complaint, if the court determines that it is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. See § 1915A(b)(1), (2); McGore v. Wrigglesworth, 114 F.3d 608 (6th Cir. 1997), overruled on other grounds by Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S. 199 (2007). In order to survive dismissal for failure to state a claim, “a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief 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] district court must (1) view the complaint in the light most favorable to the plaintiff and (2) take all well-pleaded factual allegations as true.” Tackett v. M & G Polymers, USA, LLC, 561 F.3d 478, 488 (6th Cir. 2009) (citing Gunasekera v. Irwin, 551 F.3d 461, 466 (6th Cir. 2009) (citations omitted)). “[A] pro se complaint, however inartfully pleaded, must be held to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89 (2007) (quoting Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976)). However, while liberal, this standard of review does require more than the bare assertion of legal conclusions. See Columbia Natural Res., Inc. v. Tatum, 58 F.3d 1101, 1109 (6th Cir. 1995). The Court's duty “does not require [it] to conjure up unpled allegations, ” McDonald v. Hall, 610 F.2d 16, 19 (1st Cir. 1979), or to create a claim for a plaintiff. Clark v. Nat'l Travelers Life Ins. Co., 518 F.2d 1167, 1169 (6th Cir. 1975). To command otherwise would require the Court “to explore exhaustively all potential claims of a ...

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