United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Northern Division
L. Maloney United States District Judge.
a civil rights action brought by a state prisoner under 42
U.S.C. § 1983. Under the Prison Litigation Reform Act,
Pub. L. No. 104-134, 110 Stat. 1321 (1996) (PLRA), 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, the Court will dismiss
Plaintiff's complaint for failure to state a claim
against Defendants Smith and Kinasz.
is presently incarcerated with the Michigan Department of
Corrections (MDOC) at the Ionia Correctional Facility (ICF)
in Ionia, Michigan. The events about which he complains,
however, occurred at the Kinross Correctional Facility (KCF)
in Kincheloe, Michigan. Plaintiff sues KCF Nurses Denny
Miller and Tristina M. Smith and KCF Corrections Officer
has been incarcerated for decades. He is imprisoned by the
MDOC for life following his conviction for murder. Plaintiff
alleges that since 2005, he has suffered “back pain
with radiculopathy (a nerve root disorder)[.]” (Compl.,
ECF No. 1, PageID.3.) The MDOC's medical staff has
classified Plaintiff as a chronic care patient.
18, 2018, Plaintiff was suffering extreme pain in his lower
back that was compromising the stability of his left leg.
That morning he encountered Defendant Smith at the medication
window. He described his pain to her. She said she could not
do anything about it at that time and that he should have his
unit officer call health services.
then went to the unit officer, Defendant Kinasz, and asked
him to call health services on Plaintiff's behalf.
Defendant Kinasz complied immediately. He reached Defendant
Miller and let Plaintiff speak to Defendant Miller. Plaintiff
described his symptoms which included excruciating pain in
his lower back and hip region, numbness within his penis for
long periods of time alternating with needle-poke like pains,
shooting pains up his rectum and buttocks, violent muscle
spasms, and a burning stinging sensation traveling down his
left leg that caused the leg to “give out[.]”
(Id., PageID.5.) Plaintiff asked for pain
noted that Plaintiff's symptoms were consistent with
chronic back pain. He refused any medication and refused to
direct Kinasz to bring Plaintiff to health services to see
someone else. Miller directed Plaintiff to submit a medical
kite, pay the co-pay, and wait to receive a call-out.
Miller hung-up, Plaintiff asked Kinasz to bring the issue to
his shift commander. Kinasz declined, suggesting that
Plaintiff complete a medical kite as directed by Miller.
Plaintiff complied, but he was not called out that day.
next day, July 19, 2018, Plaintiff again complained to Nurse
Smith when it was his turn at the medication window. She
again told Plaintiff there was nothing she could do until she
finished passing out medications and that, if he wanted
relief sooner, he would have to have his unit officer call
health services. She acknowledged that he needed medical
returned to his unit and asked Kinasz to call health services
as Nurse Smith had instructed. Kinasz called health services
and put Plaintiff on the phone to speak with Miller. Miller
again told Plaintiff to put in a medical kite.
who was by that time noticeably limping from the pain, asked
Prisoner Counselor Mortensen to intervene. Mortenson called
health services and spoke with Miller. Miller said that he
had still not seen a medical kite from Plaintiff and that
Plaintiff could not see anyone until he submitted a medical
kite. Plaintiff argued that he had submitted a medical kite.
Miller accused Plaintiff of lying to get out of the co-pay.
Mortenson's instruction, Plaintiff filled out another
medical kite. Mortenson reviewed the kite and then told
Plaintiff to submit it to health ...