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Harris v. Rives

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

June 12, 2019




         Plaintiff Brandon Marque Harris filed the instant pro se 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action proceeding in forma pauperis. This matter is before the Court on initial review of the complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Upon review, the Court will dismiss some of Plaintiff's claims and allow other claims to proceed for further development.


         Plaintiff is a convicted inmate at the Christian County Jail (CCJ). He sues the following personnel of CCJ: Lt. Rives; Deputy Robertson; Deputy Hurt; Deputy Hendricks; and “Christian County Jail Staff.” He sues each Defendant in his or her individual and official capacities.

         Plaintiff states that on September 5, 2018, he was taken into the “lawbox.” He reports that he complained to Defendant Hurt that he had been “in the lawbox for over an hour and I haven't ate.” He states that Defendant Hurt told him to shut his mouth and that he would get Plaintiff a food tray. According to the complaint, after about a half hour, Plaintiff had not received a food tray and, as Defendant Hurt walked by, Plaintiff tried to get his attention. Plaintiff states that Defendant Hurt became agitated with him and told him to step away from the window. Plaintiff asserts that he stepped away from the window but was “still pleading my case through the glass.” He states that Defendant Hurt called for back up on his walkie talkie. Plaintiff further states the following:

I see Deputy Robertson come around the corner. He goes into the guard tower and come out with a tazer. They pop the door to the lawbox and I'm confronted by deputy Robertson. He aims his tazer at my face and order's me to lay on the ground. I drop to my knees with my hands in the air to show that I'm not posing a threat. I ask deputy Robertson why does he has his tazer aimed at me, b/c I can see the infra red beam going from my eye to my chest. I put my hands in front of my face from fear that deputy Robertson may fire his weapon and cause an injury to my left eye, and just as I suspected deputy Robertson fires his weapon. The sharp hook like prongs attach to my left forearm and hand. I fall against the wall, and I noticed that deputy Hendricks, Rives, Robertson, and Hurt are all inside the lawbox. Deputy Hendricks shoots me with his weapon. The prongs enter my left thigh area and buttocks. I fall to the ground unable to control movement in my legs. While on the ground deputy Rives presses his taser my lower back area. Unable to move all I feel is extreme pain in my legs and upper & lower torso. At this time I also feel someones hands rub past my eyelids then a extreme burning sensation. It's starting to become hard for me to breath. I yell out loud “I cant breath.” Deputy Rives replies, If you can scream that means you can breath. Then Deputy Rives continues to tase me in my lower back area repeataly. I loose contiousness for a moment. I'm revived by the pain of deputy Hurt dropping his knee and full weight on the back of my neck. Deputy Hurt is over 300 lbs. I begin to pray b/c I really believe Im going to be killed by these deputies b/c of the physical numbness that I feel.

         Plaintiff states that he was then handcuffed and the prongs from the tasers were “snatched out of me” and that he was “dragged down the hallway and strapped to a restraint chair for 6 hours with no medical attention.” He maintains that after six hours he was moved to another cell and “was in extreme pain and had trouble walking” and “had to be helped by other inmates.”

         Plaintiff states that when he awoke the next morning he “noticed that the front of my underwear was covered with blood. I went to use the restroom and noticed that I was urinating blood.” He asserts that he informed a non-Defendant deputy that blood was being discharged from his penis and nothing was done. He reports that he filled out a sick call slip on that date, September 6, 2018, and the following six days and “was not seen by medical until 9/19/2018.”

         Plaintiff states that he was seen by non-Defendant Col. Howard on September 6, 2018, who told him there was nothing wrong with him. When Plaintiff asked him how he knew that, Howard stated because he could look at him and tell.

         Plaintiff further states that “Dep. Hendricks even went so far as to go on social media and post how bad they mistreated me and how they made me scream.” He maintains that on September 10, 2018, his then-fiancée called and spoke with Defendant Rives “about my health and welfare.” He continues, “She informed me that his reply was he's alright. But next time an incident occurs with Brandon we will kill him.” He states, “While at the Christian County Jail I have been afraid for my life. Deputy Rives has pulled me to the side and asked me am I upset about the incident.”

         Plaintiff asserts that Defendant Rives “also makes a mockery out of my religion. Being that he knows Im a Muslim. On one occassion as I was coming back from a Christian service. He pulled me to the side and asked me, How does it feel bowing down to Alla but going in there and singing to Jesus. I replied by stating that I love them both.”

         Plaintiff further states that CCJ does not have a grievance committee. He asserts, “I was told that if I have any problems with a Dep. to write Col. Howard. In which I did.” Plaintiff states that he was called to non-Defendant Howard's office and asked for a 42 U.S.C. § 1983 packet and that his “reply was you don't want to do that. Your not that type of person.”

         Plaintiff asserts that ever since the September 5, 2018, incident, “I have a neck pain that will not cease I've been put on [illegible] for the pain. I also have leg pain, and pain in my upper chest area. It feels like my heart is fluttering.” He continues, “I've seen mental health doctor's. B/c I live in fear everyday of being hurt again or killed ...

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