United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, South Bend Division
GLEN A. TAYLOR, Plaintiff,
HENRY COUNTY JAIL et al., Defendants.
OPINION AND ORDER
R. LEICHTY JUDGE
Glen A. Taylor, a prisoner without a lawyer, filed a
complaint. “A document filed pro se is to be
liberally construed, and a pro se complaint, however
inartfully pleaded, must be held to less stringent standards
than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Erickson
v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (quotation marks and
citations omitted). Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, this
court must review the complaint and dismiss it if the action
is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim, or seeks
monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such
Taylor alleges that he received inappropriate medical
treatment for a skin infection at the Henry County Jail
during the summer 2017. He further alleges that Westville
Correctional Facility officials are currently requiring him
to work as a plumber in the presence of asbestos without
adequate protective gear. For these injuries, he seeks money
complaint contains unrelated claims against several different
parties. “Unrelated claims against different defendants
belong in different suits.” George v. Smith,
507 F.3d 605, 607 (7th Cir. 2007).
A litigant cannot throw all of his grievances, against dozens
of different parties, into one stewpot. Joinder that requires
the inclusion of extra parties is limited to claims arising
from the same transaction or series of related transactions.
To be precise: a plaintiff may put in one complaint every
claim of any kind against a single defendant, per Rule 18(a),
but a complaint may present claim # 1 against Defendant A,
and claim # 2 against Defendant B, only if both claims arise
“out of the same transaction, occurrence, or series of
transactions or occurrences.”
Wheeler v. Wexford Health Sources, Inc., 689 F.3d
680, 683 (7th Cir. 2012).
incidents described in the complaint neither arise from a
single transaction or occurrence nor comprise a series of
interrelated transactions or occurrences. See In re EMC
Corp., 677 F.3d 1351, 1356 (Fed. Cir. 2012) (stating
that the operative test is “whether there is
substantial evidentiary overlap in the facts giving rise to
the cause of action against each defendant”);
Malibu Media, LLC v. John Does 1-6, 291 F.R.D. 191,
201 (N.D. Ill. 2013) (same). Instead, these alleged incidents
involve different state actors committing different types of
misconduct at different locations at different times.
Therefore, Mr. Taylor's claims are unrelated, and he
cannot litigate them all in a single lawsuit.
pro se plaintiff files a lawsuit with unrelated
claims, this court's practice is to allow him to decide
which claim (or group of related claims) to pursue in the
instant case and to allow him to decide whether to bring the
remaining claims in separate lawsuits. However, that practice
is not appropriate here because Henry County is within the
geographic boundaries of the United States District Court for
the Southern District of Indiana. Consequently, Mr. Taylor
may not pursue his claim against the Henry County defendants
in this court. See 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a)
(allowing the court to dismiss for improper venue).
remaining claim, Mr. Taylor asserts an Eighth Amendment
conditions of confinement claim against the Westville
Correctional Facility. In evaluating an Eighth Amendment
conditions of confinement claim, the court conducts both an
objective and a subjective inquiry. Farmer v.
Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 834 (1994). The objective prong
asks whether the alleged deprivation is “sufficiently
serious” so that “a prison official's act
results in the denial of the minimal civilized measure of
life's necessities.” Id. Inmates are
entitled to be provided with adequate food, clothing,
shelter, bedding, hygiene materials, and sanitation.
Knight v. Wiseman, 590 F.3d 458, 463 (7th Cir.
2009); Gillis v. Litscher, 468 F.3d 488, 493 (7th
Cir. 2006). While Mr. Taylor may be able to assert a valid
Eighth Amendment claim regarding the conditions of his
confinement, he has not named a proper defendant. The
Westville Correctional Facility is where the alleged events
occurred, but it is a building, not an individual or a
policymaking unit of government that can be sued pursuant to
42 U.S.C. § 1983. See Sow v. Fortville Police
Dept., 636 F.3d 293, 300 (7th Cir. 2011). Therefore, Mr.
Taylor may not proceed on this complaint.
said, Mr. Taylor may file an amended complaint. See
Luevano v. Wal-Mart, 722 F.3d 1014 (7th Cir. 2013). If
he chooses to file an amended complaint, he should obtain the
court's approved form from the prison law library, and he
must put the case number of this case on it, which is on the
first page of this order. He must describe his interactions
with each individual defendant at the Westville Correctional
Facility in detail, including names, dates, location, and
explain how each defendant was responsible for harming him.
these reasons, the court:
(1) GRANTS Glen A. Taylor until September 30,
2019 to file an amended complaint consistent with
this opinion; and
(2) CAUTIONS Glen A. Taylor that, if he does not respond by
that deadline, this case may be dismissed ...