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Martin v. Fowler
United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
April 16, 2018
ANTHONY C. MARTIN, Plaintiff,
LARRY FOWLER, LISA ASH, DUSHAN ZATECKY, Mr. ALSIP, Mr. LIGONIER, Mr. COLE, MICHELLE RAINS, PENNY EDEN, Ms. POTTER, DAVIS, Property Officer, LONG, Internal Affairs, STANFORD, Internal Affairs, SARAH PECKHAM, Counselor, Offr. STURGELL, Offr. HAMILTON, Sgt. PRESTEL, Sgt. MCKINNLEY, Lt. KAYLOR, Offr. BOULES, Cpt. PEROLE, Cpt. GUILLE, Cpt. CONYERS, DUNKIN, Internal Affairs, Major ELLIOTT, Sgt. MILLER, Offr. WEDDELL, Sgt. REED, Sgt. GARHAM, Offr. POP, Sgt. BAGENSKI, Sgt. COMMANDER, Offr. ZARATE, PAULA DICKSON, ALICIA MCCULLOUGH, Dr. TALBOT, Dr. PERRY, BOLMAN, MHP, RICHARDSON, MHP, Dr. DWENGER, Dr. BADE, CORIZON, and WEXFORD HEALTH SERVICES, Defendants.
ENTRY GRANTING IN FORMA PAUPERIS STATUS, GRANTING
MOTION TO AMEND COMPLAINT, SCREENING COMPLAINT, AND DIRECTING
WALTON PRATT, JUDGE United States District Court.
matter is before the Court on pro se Plaintiff, Anthony C.
Martin's (“Martin”) Motion for Leave to
Proceed in forma pauperis, Dkt. , and Motion to
Amend Complaint, Dkt. . The Court grants
the Motions in accordance with the directions set forth
IN FORMA PAUPERIS STATUS
Motion for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis, Dkt.
, is granted. Notwithstanding the
foregoing ruling, Martin still owes the entire filing fee.
“All [28 U.S.C.] § 1915 has ever done is excuse
pre-payment of the docket fees; a litigant remains
liable for them, and for other costs, although poverty may
make collection impossible.” Abdul-Wadood v.
Nathan, 91 F.3d 1023, 1025 (7th Cir. 1996) (emphasis in
MOTION TO AMEND COMPLAINT
is incarcerated at Pendleton Correctional Facility. On March
29, 2018, Martin filed a civil rights complaint pursuant to
42 U.S.C. § 1983, against 42 defendants. On April 3,
2018, Martin filed an Amended Complaint, Dkt. , also
against 42 defendants, and a Motion to Amend Complaint, Dkt.
, to which he attached a proposed complaint against 48
defendants. Martin's Motion to Amend Complaint, Dkt. ,
is granted. The Clerk is directed to
docket the proposed amended complaint, Dkt. -1,
as the Second Amended Complaint.
SCREENING OF SECOND AMENDED COMPLAINT
Second Amended Complaint is now subject to the screening
required by 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b). This statute directs
that the court dismiss a complaint or any claim within a
complaint that “(1) is frivolous, malicious, or fails
to state a claim upon which relief may be granted; or (2)
seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from
such relief.” Id. “A complaint is
subject to dismissal for failure to state a claim if the
allegations, taken as true, show the plaintiff is not
entitled to relief.” Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S.
199, 215 (2007).
Second Amended Complaint alleges a variety of civil rights
abuses, including excessive force, deliberate indifference,
and retaliation in unrelated incidents spanning a nineteen
month period beginning in August 2016. Martin seeks
compensatory damages and injunctive relief.
Rule of Civil Procedure 18 permits a plaintiff to bring, in
one lawsuit, every claim he has against a single defendant.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 18(a). However, to join multiple defendants in a
single action, Rule 20 requires that the plaintiff assert at
least one claim against all of them “arising out of the
same transaction, occurrence, or series of transactions or
occurrences” and that “any question of law or
fact common to all defendants will arise in the
action.” Id. 20(a)(2). Working together, these
two rules mean that “[u]nrelated claims against
different defendants belong in different suits” so as
to prevent prisoners from dodging the fee payment or three
strikes provisions in the Prison Litigation Reform Act.
George v. Smith, 507 F.3d 605, 607 (7th Cir. 2007).
Consequently, “multiple claims against a single party
are fine, but Claim A against Defendant 1 should not be
joined with unrelated Claim B against Defendant 2.”
George, 507 F.3d at 607. Rule 20 applies as much to
cases brought by prisoners as it does to any other case.
Second Amended Complaint violates Rules 18 and 20 insofar as
it advances unrelated claims against multiple defendants for
various discrete episodes occurring during Martin's
incarceration. While it is arguable that most of his claims
stem from the conditions of his confinement, the fact that he
is incarcerated is not a “transaction” or
“occurrence” under the Rules. As a result, there
must be more tying each episode together.
DISMISSAL OF SECOND AMENDED COMPLAINT
Second Amended Complaint is of the “kitchen-sink”
variety. Put differently, it appears to represent
Martin's catalogue of everything that happened to him
while incarcerated to which he takes exception. The
George court instructed that such “buckshot
complaints” should be “rejected.”
Id. Therefore, the Second Amended Complaint must be