United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Northern Division
J. QUIST UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
a civil rights action brought by a state prisoner pursuant to
42 U.S.C. § 1983. The Court has granted Plaintiff leave
to proceed in forma pauperis. Under the Prison
Litigation Reform Act, Pub. L. No. 104-134, 110 Stat. 1321
(1996), the Court is required to dismiss any prisoner action
brought under federal law if the complaint is frivolous,
malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant immune
from such relief. 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2), 1915A;
42 U.S.C. § 1997e(c). The Court must read
Plaintiff's pro se complaint indulgently,
see Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972), and
accept Plaintiff's allegations as true, unless they are
clearly irrational or wholly incredible. Denton v.
Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 33 (1992). Applying these
standards, Plaintiff's action will be dismissed for
failure to state a claim.
Richard Dean Stein, a state prisoner currently confined at
the Baraga Maximum Correctional Facility (AMF), filed this
pro se civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983 against Defendants Resident Unit Manager David
LaLonde, Deputy Warden D. Isard, Deputy Warden Connie Horton,
Resident Unit Manager M. LaCrosse, Manager of the Grievance
Section Richard D. Russell, Grievance Coordinator M. McLean,
Warden Jeffrey Woods, Hearing Officer Unknown O'Brien,
Hearing Officer Unknown Theut, Hearing Investigator John
McCollum, Captain J. Miller, Assistant Resident Unit
Supervisor K. Dunton, Corrections Officer D. Rosebohm,
Sergeant P. Thompson, Corrections Officer P. Irwin,
Corrections Officer Unknown Ortiz, Sergeant Unknown Pawley,
Corrections Officer L. A. Livermore, Sergeant W. Henderson,
and Sergeant Unknown Ormsbee.
complaint, Plaintiff alleges that he arrived at the Chippewa
Correctional Facility (URF) on January 28, 2016. Plaintiff
had previously been at URF and had informed his Assistant
Resident Unit Supervisor and both Inspectors of a smuggling
operation that involved an Aramark employee during his prior
incarceration. When Plaintiff arrived on January 28, 2016,
Assistant Resident Unit Supervisor McDonald was shocked to
see Plaintiff and suggested that he lay low. McDonald told
Plaintiff that he would talk to the Inspectors.
alleges that on February 19, 2016, he was approached by some
prisoners in the unit bathroom, who told Plaintiff that they
would kill him if he did not hold an “ounce of
weed.” Plaintiff left his unit and went to the Annex
building during count. Once there, Plaintiff informed
officials that he was locking up and refused to go back to
his unit. Plaintiff received a class II misconduct ticket for
being out of place. Plaintiff was placed in handcuffs and
taken to segregation. Plaintiff's defense to the
misconduct ticket was that he was threatened by 6 unknown
prisoners in the bathroom, who told Plaintiff that he had to
hold something for them, “or else.” Plaintiff
states that he went back to his cell, got soap to wash his
hands, and then walked to the control Annex. Defendant
Ormsbee elevated the misconduct to a class I. Plaintiff was
found guilty of the misconduct by Defendant O'Brien, and
was sentenced to 30 days loss of privileges. Plaintiff's
appeal was denied by Defendant Russell.
February 22, 2016, Plaintiff was ordered by Defendant
Rosebohm to return to level two custody. Plaintiff refused.
Defendants LaLonde and Isard told Plaintiff that if he
refused to return to the general population, he would receive
a misconduct and remain in segregation. Plaintiff claims that
Defendant Isard stated, “I don't know why
you[‘re] back here, and could care less, but you need
[to] tell me what's going on.” When Plaintiff
explained his situation and stated that he would be killed if
he returned to general population, Defendants LaLonde and
Isard refused to believe Plaintiff. Defendant Isard stated
that his story was “bullshit” and ordered
Plaintiff to leave segregation or take a misconduct.
Plaintiff refused to go to the general population and was
taken back to his cell by Defendant Rosebohm, who wrote a
class II misconduct on Plaintiff. Plaintiff's misconduct
was elevated to a class I by Defendant Thompson in order to
revoke Plaintiff's bond and keep him in segregation.
Plaintiff was found guilty of a class I misconduct, resulting
in 10 days detention and 30 days loss of privileges.
Plaintiff claims that his property was not returned to him
after the completion of his sanctions.
filed a grievance, which was rejected by Defendant LaCrosse,
who summarized the investigation information as follows:
Per [Resident Unit Manager] LaLonde, the grievant was seen by
SCC on 2/22/16. He added, prisoner claims a group of unknown
black prisoners surrounded him in the E-Unit bathroom and
told him to hold an ounce [of] weed for them or they were
going to stick him. Prisoner claims he has no idea who these
prisoners were. Says he thinks it's probably related to
the threats he received last time he was here. SCC found no
evidence that prisoner has been threatened or that his safety
is in jeopardy in GP [general population] at URF. PC
[protective custody] request denied, release to level 2.
See ECF No. 1-1. Defendant LaCrosse then noted that
a prisoner shall be classified to protective segregation only
if SCC determines that there is a reasonable basis to believe
the prisoner needs protection based on a review of the facts
provided by the prisoner or, if a hearing was conducted, as
found by the hearing officer. Id. Defendant LaCrosse
concluded that the interview conducted by the SCC on 2/22/16
found that Plaintiff's claimed need for protection was
unsubstantiated based on all the available information.
step II appeal was rejected by Defendant Horton, who stated,
“The interview conducted by SCC [security
classification committee] ¶ 2/22/2016 resulted in the
prisoner's protection request being unsubstantiated based
on all available information at that time.” Defendant
Horton further stated that Defendants Isard and LaLonde did
not violate policy or engage in any inappropriate behavior.
The rejection of the grievance was upheld at step III by
Irwin wrote a class II misconduct ticket on Plaintiff on
March 7, 2016, for refusing to return to the general
population. The misconduct was improperly elevated to a class
I by Defendant Thompson. Plaintiff was found guilty on March
10, 2016, by Defendant Theut. Defendant Russell denied
Plaintiff's appeal. On March 20, 2016, Defendant Ortiz
wrote a class II misconduct ticket on Plaintiff for
disobeying an order to return to the general population. This
misconduct was elevated to a class I by Defendant Pawley.
Defendant Theut found Plaintiff guilty on March 22, 2016, and
Plaintiff's appeal was denied by Defendant Russell. On
April 1, 2016, Defendant Livermore wrote a class II
misconduct ticket on Plaintiff for refusing to leave
segregation. Defendant Henderson elevated it to a class I
misconduct. Plaintiff was found guilty by Defendant Theut and
his appeal was denied by Defendant Russell.
alleges that Defendant Dunton participated in SCC hearings on
April 11, 2016, and on April 26, 2016. Defendant Dunton asked
Plaintiff one or two questions, but otherwise was silent
while Defendant LaLonde berated Plaintiff regarding his
refusal to return to general population.
claims that Defendant McCollum failed to give him the
documents he asked for to prepare for this misconduct hearing
on April 22, 2016. Defendant McCollum noted that it was
Plaintiff's fifth misconduct and that he had asked for
the hearing packs from his four previous misconduct hearings.
Defendant McCollum stated that Plaintiff had requested all
the documents from previous misconduct hearings in each of
his four prior hearings as well. Defendant McCollum
determined that Plaintiff's request was partially
duplicative and refused to give Plaintiff copies of documents
that he had already received in order to prepare for his
fourth misconduct hearing. Plaintiff complains that this
denial violated his due process rights.
point, Defendant LaLonde had Plaintiff removed from Quarry
Unit Segregation and sent to a more hostile segregation unit
in Steamboat. Defendant Irwin informed Plaintiff of the move
minutes before the 2:00 pm shift change, and stated that he
needed to hurry up and pack. Plaintiff asked for another big
plastic bag and two small bags, and Defendant Irwin gave him
the bags, but continued to insist that Plaintiff hurry.
Plaintiff was taken to Steamboat unit by a transporting
officer, who told Plaintiff that he must have angered
Defendant LaLonde, because the order for the move had been
made minutes before shift change. When Plaintiff arrived at
Steamboat, the officers were not expecting him. The
transporting officer stated, “LaLonde apparently was
pissed off at him and moved him outta Quarry Unit to
Steamboat.” Plaintiff asked about his property and was
told that it had to be checked before he could have it.
Plaintiff was led to the showers and his handcuffs and dog
leash were removed. Plaintiff was strip searched, got
redressed, and was taken to a cell at the end of the wing
which had mice in it. Plaintiff claims that the move to
Steamboat was done after his security classification meeting
with Defendants LaLonde and Miller.
claims that the named Defendants ignored his claims that he
was in danger and punished Plaintiff for asking for
protection by writing misconduct tickets on him. Plaintiff
was found guilty of the tickets by Defendant Hearing Officers
O'Brien and Theut. Plaintiff's repeated misconduct
tickets for refusing to return to the general population
resulted in Plaintiff's continued confinement in
segregation and eventual increase in security classification
to a level five. When ...