United States District Court, D. Kansas
WILLIAM C. CHEATHAM-BEY, Plaintiff,
MEGAN WATERS, et al., Defendants.
CROW, U.S. SENIOR DISTRICT JUDGE.
William C. Cheatham-Bey, an inmate at the Leavenworth County
Adult Detention Center appearing pro se and in
forma pauperis, brings this 42 U.S.C. § 1983 civil
rights complaint. For the reasons discussed below, Plaintiff
is ordered to show cause why his complaint should not be
Nature of the Matter before the Court
complaint (Doc. 1) alleges racial and religious
discrimination in connection with the revocation of his
probation. Plaintiff names as defendants Megan Waters, the
Director of Leavenworth County Community Corrections
(“LCCC”), and Corey Skaggs, Probation Officer
alleges the defendants “select individuals for
revocation based on arbitrary classifications”
including “inter-racial” and religious
discrimination. Doc. 1 at 2. He brings two counts. For Count
I, Plaintiff claims that around the end of 2013 and the
beginning of 2014, Defendant Waters made racial remarks to
his fiancée, Ashley Burns, about her “being
with” an African-American man, to the point of
harassment. Id. at 3. Defendant Waters was
supervising Ms. Burns' probation.
Count II, Plaintiff alleges Defendant Skaggs questioned him
during his intake orientation into community corrections
about the “Bey” on the end of his last name. When
Plaintiff responded it meant he was of Moorish descent,
Defendant Skaggs asked if he was a Muslim “in such a
way [Plaintiff] kn[e]w [he] had a problem.”
Id. at 3. Plaintiff further alleges Defendants
Waters and Skaggs “made a point to have me
revoke[d].” Id. at 4. Mr. Cheatham-Bey claims
in his first 18 months of supervision, he had 8 to 12
positive urine tests, but Defendant Skaggs did not inform him
he could challenge the tests and have them sent to the lab
for further testing. Plaintiff states that sometime in 2016,
he was revoked for another 18 months of supervision because
he refused to sign papers to extend his supervision for
another 5 months when he was due to be discharged in 5 days.
Id. at 5. Then, Plaintiff alleges Defendant Skaggs
filed a revocation report on July 24, 2017, that falsely
claimed Plaintiff had a domestic violence charge, did not
report to a substance abuse assessment, and had used alcohol
and marijuana. Id.
seeks an apology from Defendant Waters and compensatory
damages of between $1.5 and $3 million.
Statutory Screening of Prisoner Complaints
Court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners
seeking relief against a governmental entity or an officer or
employee of such entity to determine whether summary
dismissal is appropriate. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a).
Additionally, with any litigant, such as Plaintiff, who is
proceeding in forma pauperis, the Court has a duty
to screen the complaint to determine its sufficiency.
See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). Upon completion of
this screening, the Court must dismiss any claim that is
frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted, or seeks monetary damages from a
defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C.
§§ 1915A(b), 1915(e)(2)(B).
survive this review, the plaintiff must plead “enough
facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
544, 570 (2007). In applying the Twombly standard,
the Court must assume the truth of all well-pleaded factual
allegations in the complaint and construe them in the light
most favorable to the plaintiff. See Leverington v. City
of Colo. Springs, 643 F.3d 719, 723 (10th
pro se plaintiff's complaint must be liberally construed,
Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007), pro se
status does not relieve the plaintiff of “the burden of
alleging sufficient facts on which a recognized legal claim
could be based.” Hall v. Bellmon, 935 F.2d
1106, 1110 (10th Cir. 1991). The Court need not
accept “mere conclusions characterizing pleaded
facts.” Bryson v. City of Edmond, 905 F.2d
1386, 1390 (10th Cir. 1990). “[A]
plaintiff's obligation to provide the grounds of his
entitlement to relief requires more than labels and
conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a
cause of action will not do.” Twombly, 550
U.S. at 555 (internal quotation marks omitted).
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);
Northington v. Jackson, 973 F.2d 1518, 1523 (10th
Cir. 1992). In addressing a claim brought under § 1983,
the analysis begins by identifying the specific
constitutional right allegedly infringed. Graham v.
Connor, 490 U.S. 386, 393-94 (1989). The validity of the
claim then must be judged by reference to the specific
constitutional standard which governs that right.