United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Southern 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 Trierweiler, Mote, and Davids.
is presently incarcerated with the Michigan Department of
Corrections (MDOC) at the Bellamy Creek Correctional Facility
(IBC) in Ionia, Ionia County, Michigan. The events about
which he complains occurred at that facility. Plaintiff sues
Warden Trierweiler, Assistant Resident Unit Manager Laura
Normington, Resident Unit Manager Unknown Mote, and Deputy
Warden Unknown Davids.
alleges that on December 29, 2016, Physician Assistant
Rosilyn Jindal placed a special accommodation notice in
Plaintiff's medical file indicating that he was at risk
of a heat related illness. On March 7, 2017, Plaintiff was
transferred from the Gus Harrison Correctional Facility to
the protective custody unit at Bellamy Creek Correctional
Facility. Plaintiff was confined to his cell 22 to 23 hours a
day. Plaintiff states that at some point, he wrote to unit
supervisors regarding rising temperatures in his cell.
Plaintiff provided the special accommodation notice along
with proof that he was indigent and could not buy a fan.
Defendant Normington responded to Plaintiff's letter by
stating that the MDOC only accommodates prisoners with a cell
fan if they are in a doubled bunked cell. Since Plaintiff was
in a single cell, he was not eligible to receive a six inch
subsequently contacted health services and asked to be
evaluated for a special accommodation cell fan to prevent
heat stroke. Health services responded that it did not
provide fans, but that Plaintiff should discuss his special
accommodation order with his unit supervisor. Plaintiff also
wrote the property room officer and provided his special
accommodation order, proof of indigency, and a request for a
cell fan to prevent heat stroke. Corrections Officer Pohl
responded by telling Plaintiff that Defendant Normington was
denying his request for a fan. Plaintiff then wrote to
Defendant Normington and asked to be placed in a double bunk
cell so that he could be given a cell fan.
alleges that increasing temperatures in his cell were causing
him to become lightheaded and dizzy. Plaintiff contacted
health services about his symptoms and requested information
on how to prevent them. Plaintiff filed a grievance against
Officer Pohl and Defendant Normington on June 19, 2017. The
next day, Defendants Mote and Davids responded, finding no
violation of policy. Plaintiff filed an appeal, which was
denied by Defendant Trierweiler.
the next six weeks, as the temperature rose in
Plaintiff's cell, he suffered from nausea and vomiting,
increased dizziness and lightheadedness, and began to have
episodes of losing consciousness. On August 8, 2017,
Plaintiff wrote another letter to Defendant Normington, who
again refused to allow Plaintiff to move to a double bunk
cell. Plaintiff then filed a grievance on Defendants
Normington, Mote, and Davids. In the grievance response,
Defendants Mote and Davids stated that there was no evidence
to support Plaintiff's claim. On August 11, 2017,
Plaintiff wrote a letter to Defendant Trierweiler explaining
his situation and asking Defendant Trierweiler to look into
it. Plaintiff never received a response to his letter, but on
August 25, 2017, Defendant Trierweiler denied Plaintiff's
filed another grievance on August 15, 2017, complaining that
Defendants Normington, Mote, Davids, and Trierweiler were all
ignoring a serious risk to Plaintiff's health.
Plaintiff's grievance was rejected and Defendant
Trierweiler upheld the rejection on August 25, 2017.
Plaintiff wrote a second letter to Defendant Trierweiler on
August 16, 2017, but received no response.
states that he contracted a skin fungus known as Tinea
Versicolor as a result of the heat and humidity in his cell.
Plaintiff states that he was classified as indigent and
received $0.00 in his prisoner account between March 7, 2017,
and June of 2018. Plaintiff claims that Defendants
disregarded a serious risk to his health in violation of the
Eighth Amendment. Plaintiff seeks compensatory and punitive
damages, as well as declaratory and equitable relief.
Failure to State a Claim
complaint may be dismissed for failure to state a claim if it
fails “‘to give the defendant fair notice of what
the . . . claim is and the grounds upon which it
rests.'” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355
U.S. 41, 47 (1957)). While a complaint need not contain
detailed factual allegations, a plaintiff's allegations
must include more than labels and conclusions.
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555; Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (“Threadbare
recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by
mere conclusory statements, do not suffice.”). The
court must determine whether the complaint contains
“enough facts to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at
570. “A claim has facial plausibility when the
plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to
draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the misconduct alleged.” Iqbal, 556 U.S.
at 679. Although the plausibility standard is not equivalent
to a “‘probability requirement,' . . . it
asks for more than a sheer possibility that a defendant has
acted unlawfully.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678
(quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556). “[W]here
the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to infer more
than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has
alleged-but it has not ‘show[n]'-that the pleader
is entitled to relief.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679
(quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2)); see also Hill v.
Lappin, 630 F.3d 468, 470-71 (6th Cir. 2010) (holding
that the Twombly/Iqbal plausibility standard applies
to dismissals of prisoner cases on initial review under 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915A(b)(1) and 1915(e)(2)(B)(i)).
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must
allege the violation of a right secured by the federal
Constitution or laws and must show that the deprivation was
committed by a person acting under color of state law.
West v. Atkins, 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988); Street
v. Corr. Corp. of Am., 102 F.3d 810, 814 (6th Cir.
1996). Because § 1983 is a method for vindicating
federal rights, not a source of substantive rights itself,
the first step in an action ...