United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Dublin Division
MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND
K. EPPS UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
an inmate at Telfair State Prison (“TSP”) in
Helena, Georgia, brought this case pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983 and is proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis.
Before the Court are Plaintiff's motions for injunctive
relief in which he asks the Court to order access to a
computer and making one building in TSP an all-civilian
dormitory or, in the alternative, placing Plaintiff in a
facility that houses under 500 inmates. (Doc. nos. 70, 72.)
For the reasons set forth below, the Court REPORTS and
RECOMMENDS Plaintiff's motions for injunctive relief be
all of Plaintiff's allegations as true, the facts are as
follows. Defendants have allowed inmates to form gangs, which
has caused numerous stabbings and beatings between inmates.
(Doc. no. 1, p. 2; doc. no. 17, p. 2, 4; doc. no. 19, pp.
7-8.) When TSP was placed on lockdown multiple times after
violence erupted, Defendants informed gang leaders what to do
and coordinated gang leaders' ability to inform and
instruct their members how to respond to the escalating
violence. (Doc. no. 1, p. 7; doc. no. 13, pp. 2-3, 5; doc.
no. 19, p. 2.) In one instance, Defendants Kilpatrick and
Mixon brought a leader of the Blood Gang and a leader of the
Crip Gang into Plaintiff's dormitory to instruct their
members. (Doc. no. 19, p. 2.) Defendants have also allowed
correctional officers to smuggle in contraband such as knives
and cell phones for gang members to use. (Doc. no. 1, p. 7.)
result of the violence, TSP has repeatedly been placed under
lockdown, and a “shakedown” has resulted in the
removal of sixty-eight knives. (See doc. no. 1, p. 7; doc.
no. 13, p. 2; doc. no. 16, p. 1.) Defendant Toole allegedly
addressed Plaintiff's entire dorm in a speech identifying
gang activity as the cause of the lockdowns. (Doc. no. 15, p.
4.) Despite Defendants' attempts to address these issues,
violence at TSP continues to escalate and attacks between
gangs continue to occur on a frequent basis. (See, e.g., doc.
no. 17, p. 2.) Indeed, Warden Hall admitted he could not
separate non-gang affiliated inmates because the gangs were
so prevalent and “mixed in.” (See doc. no. 20, p.
3.) As a result of this violence, Plaintiff is “living
in fear.” (Doc. no. 10, p. 7.)
Legal Standard for Injunctive Relief
moving for injunctive relief must show the following:
“(1) substantial likelihood of success on the merits;
(2) irreparable injury will be suffered unless the injunction
issues; (3) the threatened injury to the movant outweighs
whatever damage the proposed injunction may cause the
opposing party; and (4) if issued, the injunction would not
be adverse to the public interest.” McDonald's
Corp. v. Robertson, 147 F.3d 1301, 1306 (11th Cir. 1998).
“A preliminary injunction is an extraordinary and
drastic remedy not to be granted unless the movant clearly
establishes the ‘burden of persuasion' as to the
four requisites.” All Care Nursing Serv., Inc., 887
F.2d at 1537 (citing United States v. Jefferson County, 720
F.2d. 1511, 1519 (11th Cir. 1988)).
Plaintiff Is Not Entitled to a Preliminary Injunction
Regarding His Computer Access.
district court should not issue an injunction when the
injunction in question is not of the same character, and
deals with a matter lying wholly outside the issues in the
suit.” Kaimowitz v. Orlando, Fla., 122 F.3d 41, 43
(11th Cir. 1997), opinion amended on other grounds on
reh'g, 131 F.3d 950 (11th Cir. 1997); see also Bruce v.
Reese, 431 Fed.Appx. 805, 806 (11th Cir. 2011)
(“[Plaintiff's] request for injunctive relief as to
those causes of action was thus properly denied as they were
as outside the scope of the underlying suit.”)
(citations omitted). Here, Plaintiff is suing Defendants for
failure to protect him from a substantial risk of serious
harm. However, in his motion, Plaintiff seeks injunctive
relief regarding an access to courts claim. See Lewis v.
Casey, 518 U.S. 343, 350 (1996) (“The right that Bounds
acknowledged was the (already well-established) right of
access to the courts . . . . [W]e had protected that right by
prohibiting state prison officials from actively interfering
with inmates' attempts to prepare legal
documents.”) (emphasis in original) (citations
omitted). Accordingly, because Plaintiff's request for
injunctive relief is “not of the same character that
could be granted finally” and deals “with a
matter that was wholly outside of the issues in the suit,
” Plaintiff's request for access to a computer
should be denied. Kaimowitz, 122 F.3d at 43.
Plaintiff Is Not Entitled to a Preliminary Injunction
Regarding His Housing.
has not met his burden of persuasion on all four requisites
for obtaining injunctive relief regarding his housing. As to
his request that he be transferred to a prison with less than
500 inmates, there is no constitutional right to remain at or
be transferred from a particular penal institution. See Adams
v. James, 784 F.2d 1077, 1079 (11th Cir. 1986) (“prison
inmates do not have a constitutionally protected right to
remain at a particular penal institution”); Meachum v.
Fano, 427 U.S. 215, 227 (1976) (transfer without hearing does
not violate Constitution); see also Tate v. Brannen, No.
5:11-CV-249-WLS-MSH, 2012 WL 6968457, at *3 (M.D. Ga. Jan.
23, 2012), report and recommendation adopted, No. 5:11-CV-249
WLS, 2013 WL 395976 (M.D. Ga. Jan. 31, 2013)
(“Plaintiff has no constitutional right to be
transferred from a particular prison.”). Accordingly,
Plaintiff is not entitled to a preliminary injunction
transferring him to another prison.
his request that Defendants “make [one] building an all
civilian dormitory, ” Plaintiff has not established the
four requirements warranting a preliminary injunction. First,
Plaintiff has not offered evidence showing a likelihood of
success on the merits. To establish a claim for deliberate
indifference to a substantial risk of serious harm, Plaintiff
must “show (1) a substantial risk of serious harm; (2)
the defendants' deliberate indifference to that risk; and
(3) causation.” Lane v. Philbin, 835 F.3d
1302, 1307 (11th Cir. 2016) (internal quotations omitted).
These three elements are evaluated in part by an objective
standard and in part by a subjective standard. See
Caldwell v. Warden, FCI Talladega, 748 F.3d 1090, 1099
(11th Cir. 2014). As the Eleventh Circuit explained,
When examining the first element-a substantial risk of
serious harm-the court uses an objective standard. The second
element-the defendant's deliberate indifference to that
risk-has two components: one subjective and one objective. To
satisfy the subjective component, a plaintiff must produce
evidence that the defendant actually (subjectively) kn[ew]
that an inmate [faced] a substantial risk of serious harm. To
satisfy the objective component, a plaintiff must produce