United States District Court, D. Kansas
RONALD B. WIELAND, Plaintiff,
FNU RUCKER, et al., Defendants.
NOTICE AND ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE
Crow U.S. Senior District Judge
pro se civil rights action was filed pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983 by a prisoner currently confined at the Ellsworth
Correctional Facility in Ellsworth, Kansas. Plaintiff
proceeds in forma pauperis and alleges that constitutional
violations occurred during his pre-trial confinement at the
Shawnee County Department of Corrections (“SCDC”)
in Topeka, Kansas. He brings suit against SCDC and various
employees. As relief, he requests $180, 000.00 and mental
health or medical treatment for conditions that “may
arise” because of the alleged conditions.
initially filed this action in the United States District
Court for the District of Maryland. (Doc. 1). After
conducting an initial review, that court determined that
Kansas was the appropriate venue for this action and, under
28 U.S.C. §1406(a), transferred the case to this
district for all further proceedings. (Docs. 3 and 4).
December 22, 2017, this court directed plaintiff to submit a
certified financial statement to support his application to
proceed in forma pauperis. (Doc. 5). The court also directed
plaintiff to submit an amended complaint on the proper forms
which presents a clear statement of plaintiff's claims
and the relief he seeks. Id. On March 2, 2018,
plaintiff provided the required certified financial statement
and filed an amended complaint. (Docs. 9 and 10). Based upon
the financial statement, the court granted plaintiff's
motion for leave to proceed without prepayment of fees and
assessed no initial partial filing fee because plaintiff has
insufficient funds with which to do so. (Doc. 11). Plaintiff
remains obligated to make monthly payments under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(b)(2) until he pays the full amount of the
$350.00 filing fee.
Allegations in the Amended Complaint
the court's order that plaintiff set out his claims using
the form complaint without referring to an attached narrative
statement, the amended complaint submitted by plaintiff does
exactly that. The court has carefully reviewed
plaintiff's statement and concludes that plaintiff brings
alleges that during his 20-month confinement, cells and
living areas of the SCDC segregation unit were contaminated
with mold, feces, blood stains, and pepper spray residue, and
that inmates in segregation were not allowed to have cleaning
materials. He conclusorily alleges that inmates may spend
months in the same cell without access to cleaning materials.
Plaintiff further alleges that on September 12, 2017, the
inmate in a neighboring cell urinated on the floor, under the
door, and onto the walkway; smeared feces on the door and
walls; and purposely caused his toilet to overflow, which
flooded plaintiff's cell with contaminated toilet water.
Plaintiff was moved the next day to another cell, which he
alleges had feces smeared on the wall, door, and window.
further alleges that the SCDC regularly remained in
“lockdown” status for 48-96 consecutive hours,
which he contends violated his constitutional rights as a
pre-trial detainee because during lockdown periods he had no
access to common areas, the outdoor courtyard, exercise
areas, showers, or cleaning materials.
plaintiff alleges that SCDC officials improperly punished him
and other segregation inmates who committed rules violations
by housing them for multiple days in the suicide prevention
and close observation cells, which lacked chairs, tables,
beds, toilets, and sinks, and provided no access to exercise
areas, the dayroom, or common areas.
contends that these violations have caused him to develop
severe separation anxiety disorder, manic depression,
paranoid thoughts, anxiety, and depression.
Screening Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A
Court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners
seeking relief against a governmental entity or an officer or
an employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. §
1915A(a). The Court must dismiss a complaint or portion
thereof if a plaintiff 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. 28 U.S.C. §
state a claim under § 1983, a plaintiff must allege the
violation of a right secured by the Constitution and laws of
the United States, and must show that the alleged deprivation
was committed by a person acting under color of state
law.” West v. Atkins,487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988)
(citations omitted); Northington v. Jackson, 973
F.2d 1518, 1523 (10th Cir. 1992). A court liberally construes
a pro se complaint and applies “less stringent
standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.”
Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007). In
addition, the court accepts all well-pleaded allegations in
the complaint as true. Anderson v. Blake, 469 F.3d
910, 913 (10th Cir. 2006). On the other hand, “when ...