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Wiley v. KDOC

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

March 21, 2018




         Plaintiff Allen Wiley filed the instant pro se 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action proceeding in forma pauperis (DN 1). The complaint is now before the Court for initial screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. For the reasons stated below, the Court will dismiss some claims and allow other claims to proceed for further development.


         Plaintiff, a convicted inmate at the Kentucky State Penitentiary (KSP), names the following Defendants: the Kentucky Department of Corrections (KDOC); KSP Warden Randy White; Grievance Coordinator Dan Smith; Correctional Officers Terry Griffin, Stephen Mitchell, J. Knight, Burnett, and Chase Byrum; Sergeant Brendan Inglish; Lieutenant Jesse Combs; and Sergeant Gage Rodriguez. He sues each of the individually named Defendants in their individual and official capacities. Where the form asks the filer to state how each Defendant acted under color of state or local law, Plaintiff states, “Deliberate indifference and intentional excessive use of force.”

         Plaintiff alleges that on July 10, 2017, he was standing in a line outside of 5 cellhouse waiting to be searched by corrections officers. He states that Defendant Griffin walked up behind him and “stated look at the f***ing ground and stop looking at my f***ing officers.” Plaintiff continues as follows:

I notice a cert team bat in officer Terry Griffin hand. Officer Terry Griffin then grabbed me and pushed me up against the concrete brick wall out side 5 cell house with a cert team bat in his hand. Officer Chase Byrum walked up and placed metal restraints excessively tight on my two wrists my wrists and hands swelled up instantly. Then Officer Terry Griffin and officer Stephen Mitchell Grabbed me by the back of my neck and head and chicken wing me were head was all the way down to my ankles and a baton was used on my shoulders to raise my arms as high as they can go while cuffed behind my back bent over. It was very hard difficult for me to walk in that type of position. Upon being escorted to 3 cellhouse I fell down on the concrete ground face first. While I was laying on the concrete ground in full metal restraints with my hands cuffed behind my back Sergeant Brendan Inglish started twisting my ankle. Sergeant Brendan Inglish I quote stated you are going to get the your f***ing ass up off the f***ing ground and you are going to f***ing walk. At this point my face arms two wrists hands knees legs were skinned up really really bad. I tried to get up and walk and Officer Terry Griffin and officer Stephen Mitchell again used the baton on my shoulders to raise my arms high as they can go while cuffed bent over. I fell down 3 times in this type of position. On the 3rd fall I was laying down on the concrete ground facce down in front of 3 cellhouse restrictive housing unit when Brendan Inglish odered J. Knight to shoot me in the lower back with a taser gun. After I was shot with the taser gun in the lower back Officer Terry Griffin gave his baton to one of the other officers and then grabbed me by my uniform shirts and started pulling and dragging me across the concrete ground on camera in front of 3 cellhouse restrictive housing unit.

         Plaintiff maintains that the “force was applied in a bad faith effort not to maintain or restore discipline[;] it was used maliciously and sadistically to cause harm. The force used was unnecessary and wanton infliction of pain ensued as they intended needless harm.” He further states that the Warden and KDOC “knew or reasonbly should have known the illegal action of excessive use of force because it is all on camera.”

         In addition, Plaintiff asserts that on August 13, 2017, Defendants Coombs, Rodriguez, and Burnett walked up to his cell door in 3 cellhouse and opened his food slot. According to Plaintiff, they ordered him “to come and cuff up cell search.” He states that when he walked to his cell door, “Lieutenant Jesse Coombs pulled out his o.c pepper spray and threaten to use force and spray me in my face. I followed oders I was hand cuffed and stripped out. For 3 days I was inside . . . my cell with no mat no shoes socks clothes nothing.”

         Where the form requests the filer to state any injuries he incurred, Plaintiff states, “My face knees legs two wrist hands were skinned up really really bad. I received no medical treatment for my injuries. And bruises on my shoulders from baton.”

         As relief, he seeks compensatory and punitive damages and injunctive relief in the form of “the Court's protection that I not be retaliated against.”

         In a grievance attached to the complaint, Plaintiff describes the above alleged incident of excessive force. In addition, he states, “I was rejected medical treatment.” He also states, “The two wardens Randy White and Steve Ford authorized these officers to use unnecessary force with leads to assults against inmates. Both wardens broke the law when they authorized these unnecessary assults against prisoners at K.S.P. institutional prison.”


         When a prisoner initiates a civil action seeking redress from a governmental entity, officer, or employee, the trial court must review the complaint and dismiss the complaint, or any portion of it, if the court determines that the complaint 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 601, 604 (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 claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Id. (citing Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556). “[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)). “But the district court need not accept a ‘bare assertion of legal conclusions.'” Tackett, 561 F.3d at 488 (quoting Columbia Natural Res., Inc. v. Tatum, 58 F.3d 1101, 1109 (6th Cir. 1995)). “A pleading that offers ‘labels and ...

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