United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Dublin Division
MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND
K. EPPS, UNITED STAINS MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
an inmate at Telfair State Prison ("TSP") in
Helena, Georgia, is proceeding in forma pauperis
("IFP") in this case filed pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. Because he is proceeding IFP, Plaintiff's
amended complaint must be screened to protect potential
defendants. Phillips v. Mashburn, 746 F.2d 782, 785
(11th Cir. 1984); Al-Amin v. Donald, 165 Fed.Appx.
733, 736 (11th Cir. 2006).
names the following Defendants: (1) Phillip Hall, Warden of
TSP; (2) Barbara Grant, Unit Manager of Tier II Program at
TSP; (3) Fredrick Johnson, Unit Manager of Tier II Program at
TSP; (4) Lisa Fountain, Interim Manager; and (5) Sheland
Cray, Correctional Officer II at TSP. (Doc. no. 5, pp. 1-6.)
Taking all of Plaintiffs factual allegations as true, as the
Court must for purposes of the present screening, the facts
are as follows.
April 5, 2017, Defendant Cray assaulted Plaintiff with a
metal detector in Building F-l at TSP and took away
Plaintiffs recreation time. (LL at 6-7.) Defendant Grant
"and everyone stated in this complaint was
involved" in the April 5th incident, though Plaintiff
provides no details about how each Defendant participated in
the alleged assault. (Id at 7.)
filed a grievance on April 13, 2017. (Id. at 9.) At
the time Plaintiff filed his amended complaint, he had not
yet filed an appeal of the grievance, even though prison
officials had exceeded the forty days allowed to respond to
the original grievance. (Id.) Contrary to Plaintiffs
assertion that he filed a grievance on April 13th, Plaintiff
also asserts he did not file grievance but informed
"[e]veryone that's in this complaint" about the
April 5th incident and was simply told "they'll look
into it." (Id. at 10.)
seeks an order directing TSP officials to stop harassing and
punishing him, as well as $50, 000 in punitive and
compensatory damages from each Defendant. (Id. at
amended complaint or any portion thereof may be dismissed if
it is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon
which relief may be granted, or if it seeks monetary relief
from a defendant who is immune to such relief. See
28 U.S.C §§ 1915(e)(2)(B) and 1915A(b).
Plaintiff's amended complaint should be dismissed because
of his failure to exhaust administrative remedies. Although
Plaintiff alternately states he did, and did not, file a
grievance, the Court finds that even if Plaintiff did file a
grievance, he did not complete the administrative process
prior to filing his lawsuit.
The Exhaustion Requirement
1997e(a) of the Prison Litigation Reform Act
("PLRA") provides that "[n]o action shall be
brought with respect to prison conditions under section 1983
of this title, or any other Federal law, by a prisoner
confined in any jail, prison or other correctional facility
until such administrative remedies as are available are
exhausted." 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(a). Dismissal for
failure to state a claim is appropriate if it is clear from
the face of a complaint that the plaintiff failed to exhaust
administrative remedies. See Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S.
199, 215 (2007); Bingham v. Thomas, 654 F.3d 1171,
1175 (11th Cir. 2011); Solliday v. Federal Officers.
413 Fed.Appx. 206, 208 (11th Cir. 2011); Anderson v.
Donald. 261 Fed.Appx. 254, 256 (11th Cir. 2008). The
PLRA's mandatory exhaustion requirement "applies to
all prisoners seeking redress for prison circumstances or
occurrences." Porter v. Nussle, 534 U.S. 516,
520 (2002). Moreover, the Court does not have discretion to
waive the requirement, even if it can be shown that the
grievance process is futile or inadequate. See Smith v.
Terry, 491 Fed.Appx. 81, 83 (11th Cir. 2012);
Alexander v. Hawk. 159 F.3d 1321, 1325 (11th Cir.
the PLRA also "requires proper exhaustion."
Woodford v. Ngo, 548 U.S. 81, 93 (2006). In order to
properly exhaust his claims, a prisoner must "us[e] all
steps" in the administrative process; he must also
comply with any administrative "deadlines and other
critical procedural rules" along the way. LL at 90
(internal quotation omitted). If a prisoner fails to complete
the administrative process or falls short of compliance with
procedural rules governing prisoner grievances, he
procedurally defaults his claims. Johnson v.
Meadows, 418 F.3d 1152, 1159 (11th Cir. 2005).
because exhaustion of administrative remedies is a
"precondition" to filing an action in federal
court, the Eleventh Circuit requires prisoners to complete
the administrative process before initiating suit.
Poole v. Rich, 312 Fed.Appx. 165, 166 (11th Cir.
2008); see also Higginbottom v. Carter, 223 F.3d
1259, 1261 (11th Cir. 2000).Finally, under the PLRA, the Court
has no discretion to inquire into whether administrative
remedies are "plain, speedy, [or] effective."
Porter, 534 U.S. at 524; see also
Alexander, 159 F.3d at 1326. Rather, under the
PLRA's "strict exhaustion" requirement,
administrative remedies are deemed "available"
whenever "'there is the possibility of at least some
kind of relief" Johnson, 418 F.3d at 1155,