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Bentley v. Crews

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

August 8, 2019

ISAIAH PARRISH BENTLEY PLAINTIFF
v.
COOKIE CREWS et al. DEFENDANTS

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          THOMAS B. RUSSELL, SENIOR JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT.

         Plaintiff Isaiah Parrish Bentley filed a pro se, in forma pauperis 42 U.S.C. § 1983 complaint. This matter is before the Court for screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A and McGore v. Wrigglesworth, 114 F.3d 601 (6th Cir. 1997), overruled on other grounds by Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S. 199 (2007). For the following reasons, the complaint will be dismissed.

         I. STATEMENT OF FACTS

         Plaintiff is a convicted prisoner incarcerated at the Kentucky State Penitentiary (KSP). He names as Defendants Correct Care Solutions and in their individual and official capacities Cookie Crews, “administrator over health service division;” Denise Burkett, “clinical director over health service;” and Tonya Gray and Gene Reaney, both designated as “Psychology.”

         Plaintiff alleges that his Eighth Amendment rights are being violated because his gender dysphoria is not being properly treated. He states, “They keep refuseing to give me (HRT) thereapy, and from them refuseing me treatment I develop depression, anxiety and suicidal tendencies.” He states that he was diagnosed with gender dysphoria “before KSP” and that he is denied hormone therapy “saying I do not meet criteria.” Elsewhere he states, “They ask for records from the street. I did not have any, so[] they could not help me.” He further states that he was diagnosed with gender dysphoria at Northpoint Training Center but since coming “here to KSP both licensed mental providers at KSP have gone against of what the other psychiatric has noted and diagnosed me with and left me to suffer.”

         With regard to Defendant Gray, Plaintiff states that she “went against” his prior mental health provider Keith Feck's diagnosis. He alleges that she has “lied on her progress notes, writing down things I have not said.”

         Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Crews is the administrator of all the people he has dealt with and “there is no proper training on how to deal with transgender inmates.” He also alleges that she has never responded to letters he has written to her.

         As to Defendant Burkett, Plaintiff alleges that she “has failed to do her job as clinical director.” He states that she sent him a paper “that he was to be re-evaluated by psychology and psychiatry to determine if I meet the criteria for gender dysphoria . . . on Feb. 27, ” but that as of April 20, 2019, he had not been re-evaluated.

         Finally, Plaintiff alleges that Defendant Reaney has violated his constitutional rights by “going against another psychiatric nurse practitioner diagnoses.”

         Plaintiff attaches several documents to his complaint, including a Psychology Progress Note made by Keith Feck at the Northpoint Training Center dated September 18, 2017. That Note states, “[Plaintiff] does meet the criteria for Gender Dysphoria . . . [Plaintiff] has a history of hormone treatment and wants to continue this. Advised [Plaintiff] to put in a sick call slip to start the process to see [if] this would be approved.”

         Plaintiff also attaches a response to a grievance regarding lack of treatment for gender dysphoria from Defendant Gray. That response states in part:

A review of [Plaintiff's] EMR reveal[s] that [Plaintiff] was previously diagnosed with [gender dysphoria]; however, since the time of the initial diagnosis, both licensed mental providers at KSP, and the psychiatric nurse practitioner have further evaluated the man. Each provider noted the client did not present with symptoms at the time of their individual assessments that would meet the criteria of Gender Dysphoria. In regards to his request for HRT and/or gender reassignment surgery, there is no additional[] records or information that such a procedure was started while the client was in the community. Information was requested; however, the client was unable to provide credible information for such to be received. Additionally, [Plaintiff] was presented before TLOCC (Therapeutic Level of Care Committee), which consists of multiple, licensed team members, from varied and diverse professional backgrounds. It was determined that the client did not meet the criteria at that time to pursue the treatment that is being requested by the client.
Conversely, it should be noted that [Plaintiff] has a treatment plan in place prescribed by licensed providers that currently meets community standards.

         Plaintiff also attaches a document from Defendant Burkett in response to a letter from Plaintiff “expressing concern over gender dysphoria.” That document states that Defendant Burkett has been in communication with Dr. Meek and the recommendation is that Plaintiff “be re-evaluated by psychology and psychiatry to determine if [he] meet the criteria for gender dysphoria. After [his] evaluations, the psychology . . . and psychiatry ...


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