United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
ENTRY SCREENING COMPLAINT AND DIRECTING FURTHER
William T. Lawrence, Judge United States District Court
Samuel Davis, who is incarcerated at the Wabash Valley
Correctional Facility, filed a pro se complaint under 42
U.S.C. § 1983, alleging that his civil rights were
violated. The Court is required to screen complaints brought
by prisoners seeking relief against a governmental entity or
an officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(a). The Court must dismiss a complaint or
portion thereof if the prisoner has raised claims that are
legally “frivolous or malicious, ” that fail to
state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or that seek
monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such
relief. § 1915A(b).
state a cognizable claim under the federal notice pleading
system, the plaintiff is required to provide a “short
and plain statement of the claim showing that [he] is
entitled to relief[.]” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). It is not
necessary for the plaintiff to plead specific facts, and his
statement need only “give the defendant fair notice of
what the ... claim is and the grounds upon which it
rests.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
544, 555 (2007) (quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S.
41, 47 (1957)); see Christopher v. Buss, 384 F.3d
879, 881 (7th Cir. 2004). However, a complaint that offers
“labels and conclusions” or “formulaic
recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not
do.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
(2009) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555). To state
a claim, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter,
accepted as true, “that is plausible on its
face.” Id. “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. The complaint allegations “must be enough
to raise a right to relief above the speculative
level.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555;
Christopher, 384 F.3d at 881.
considering whether a complaint states a claim, courts should
follow the principles set forth in Twombly by first
“identifying pleadings that, because they are no more
than conclusions, are not entitled to the assumption of
truth.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679. Legal
conclusions must be supported by factual allegations.
Id. If there are well-pleaded factual allegations,
the Court must then “assume their veracity and then
determine whether they plausibly give rise to an entitlement
to relief.” Id.
state a claim for relief under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a
plaintiff must allege that: (1) he was deprived of a right
secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States; and
(2) the deprivation was visited upon him by a person or
persons acting under color of state law. Buchanan-Moore
v. County of Milwaukee, 570 F.3d 824, 827 (7th Cir.
2009); see also Gomez v. Toledo, 446 U.S. 635, 640
(1980). The Court is obliged to give the plaintiff's pro
se allegations, “however inartfully pleaded, ” a
liberal construction. See Erickson v. Pardus, 551
U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (quoting Estelle v. Gamble, 429
U.S. 97, 106 (1976)).
Davis has sued Kim Hobson an employee of Corizon, Internal
Affairs, Corizon Dentist Dr. Jimmerson, and Grievance
Specialist Teresa Littlejohn. Mr. Davis alleges that he was
retaliated against for pursuing grievances and lawsuits at
Wabash Valley Correctional Facility.
state a claim for retaliation, Mr. Davis needs only to allege
that he engaged in conduct protected by the First Amendment,
and that the defendants retaliated against him based on that
conduct. See Walker v. Thompson, 288 F.3d 1005,
1008-09 (7th Cir. 2002). A complaint states a claim for
retaliation when it sets forth “a chronology of events
from which retaliation may plausibly be inferred.”
Zimmerman v. Tribble, 226 F.3d 568, 573 (7th Cir.
2000) (quoting Cain v. Lane, 857 F.2d 1139, 1143 n.6
(7th Cir. 1988)). “Conversely, alleging merely the
ultimate fact of retaliation is insufficient.”
Murphy, 833 F.2d at 108.
complaint alleges that when Mr. Davis told Dr. Jimmerson that
she was causing him pain she snatched his hat off his head.
In addition, Dr. Jimmerson gave him partial dentures instead
of full dentures even though she knew the partials would mess
up his teeth. This was allegedly done out of retaliation for
allegations are sufficient to state an Eighth Amendment
deliberate indifference claim and a First Amendment
retaliation against Dr. Jimmerson.
other viable claims were identified in this action. The
retaliation claims asserted against Kim Hobson an employee of
Corizon, Internal Affairs, and Grievance Specialist Teresa
Littlejohn must be dismissed. This is
because the only allegation against them is that they
reported the results of their investigation into Mr.
Davis's grievances and that Mr. Davis disagreed with the
result. Just as “[a] single retaliatory disciplinary
charge that is later dismissed is insufficient to serve as
the basis of a § 1983 action, ” an unfavorable
result to a grievance, without more is insufficient to serve
as the basis of a § 1983 action. Bridges v.
Gilbert, 557 F.3d 541, 555 (7th Cir. 2009) (citing
Bart v. Telford, 677 F.2d 622, 625 (7th
Cir. 1982) (“A tort to be actionable requires injury.
It would trivialize the First Amendment to hold that
harassment for exercising the right of free speech was always
actionable no matter how unlikely to deter a person of
ordinary firmness from that exercise....”)).
clerk is directed to terminate all
defendants except Dr. Jimmerson on the docket.
clerk is designated pursuant to Fed. R.
Civ. P. 4(c)(3) to issue process to defendant Dr.
Jimmerson in the manner specified by Fed. R. Civ. P.
4(d). Process shall consist of the complaint (docket 2),
applicable forms (Notice of Lawsuit and Request for Waiver of
Service of Summons and Waiver of Service of Summons), and