United States District Court, E.D. Kentucky, Northern Division, Ashland
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Anthony Johnson is an inmate at the Boyd County Detention
Center (BCDC) in Catlettsburg, Kentucky. Proceeding without a
lawyer, Johnson filed a civil rights complaint with this
Court against Joseph Burchett, the Jailer of the BCDC, as
well as several unnamed BCDC employees. This Court, however,
dismissed Johnson's complaint without prejudice for
several reasons, including but not limited to the fact that
his complaint failed to adequately state a claim for relief
as required by Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil
Procedure. That said, the Court noted that Johnson could file
a new complaint that describes the facts of his case and
identifies the people, dates, places, and actions relevant to
his claims. See Johnson v. Burchett, No.
0:18-cv-013-HRW (E.D. Ky. 2018).
has now filed a new complaint with this Court. [D. E. No. 1].
However, there are once again multiple problems with
Johnson's complaint. As an initial matter, Johnson did
not file his latest complaint on a form approved for use by
this Court, as initially instructed by the Court in its order
dismissing his last case. Johnson v. Burchett, No.
0:18-cv-013-HRW (E.D. Ky. February 6, 2018).
importantly, Johnson's latest complaint appears to
violate Rule 20's limits on permissive joinder of
parties. That Rule only allows a plaintiff to join one claim
against one defendant and a different claim against a
different defendant in one lawsuit if both claims arise out
of the same occurrence or series of occurrences. See
Fed. R. Civ. P. 20(a)(2)(A).
as the Court can tell from Johnson's submission, he is
alleging several different unrelated claims against several
different defendants. Indeed, Johnson first alleges that four
prison officers failed to protect him from a recent February
2018 attack by other inmates. However, Johnson later asserts
that, over the past several months, a registered nurse at the
prison has not provided him with medication to treat his
mental health problems, causing him "to see things that
aren't there [and] also to hear voices and [have]
problems with paranoia as well." [D. E. No. 1 at 4].
Johnson also claims that, in October 2017, he was the victim
of a sexual assault, and a prison officer displayed
deliberate indifference to that situation. Johnson then
claims there is black mold at the prison causing him
emotional distress and breathing problems and that a nurse
failed to treat his symptoms. Johnson further alleges that
another prison officer threatened him months ago. These are
just some of the claims that Johnson asserts against the nine
different defendants he names in his complaint. In short, it
appears that Johnson is trying to "throw all of his
grievances, against.. . [many] different parties, into one
stewpot, " which is not permitted by the Federal Rules
of Civil Procedure. Wheeler v. Wexford Health Sources,
Inc., 689 F.3d 680, 683 (7th Cir. 2012).
light of the combination of problems mentioned above, the
Court will address Johnson's first claim against four of
the defendants and will then dismiss without prejudice his
other, unrelated claims against the other defendants. Johnson
may pursue those other claims if he so chooses by filing
"separate complaints, each confined to one group of
injuries and defendants." Id.
respect to Johnson's first claim, he alleges that, on
February 12, 2018, multiple inmates physically attacked him
and four prison officers failed to protect him from the
assault. Johnson's allegations are certainly very
serious. However, Johnson is required to first address this
matter with prison officials by fully exhausting his
administrative remedies before filing a lawsuit with this
Court. See Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S. 199, 216 (2007).
It is obvious from the face of Johnson's complaint that
he did not fully exhaust his administrative remedies; after
all, Johnson completed and signed his complaint on February
26, 2018, just two weeks after the alleged events in
question. Since exhaustion is mandatory under the Prisoner
Litigation Reform Act, the Court will dismiss Johnson's
claim without prejudice. See Fletcher v. Myers, No.
5:ll-cv-141-KKC (E.D. Ky. 2012), aff'd, No.
12-5630 (6th Cir. 2013). Ultimately, like Johnson's other
claims, he may still pursue this matter; however, he must
first fully exhaust his administrative remedies.
it is hereby ORDERED as follows:
Johnson's failure to protect claim against Officers
Miller, Cantrell, Layne, and McKenzie is
DISMISSED without prejudice for failure to
fully exhaust his administrative remedies.
Johnson's various other claims are also
DISMISSED without prejudice because they are
improperly joined in this action.
and all pending motions are DENIED AS MOOT.
action is STRICKEN from the ...