United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Dublin Division
ABE B. HOLMES, Plaintiff,
MR. HATTLET, Correctional Officer; MR. MOSLEY, Correctional Officer; and MR. BLAIR, Assistant Warden, Defendants.
MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND
K. EPPS UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
an inmate at Georgia State Prison in Reidsville, Georgia, has
filed a complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 regarding
events alleged to have occurred at Johnson State Prison
(“JSP”) in Wrightsville, Georgia. Because he is
proceeding in forma pauperis (“IFP”),
Plaintiff's 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).
SCREENING OF THE COMPLAINT
names as Defendants: (1) Correctional Officer Hattlet; (2)
Correctional Officer Mosley; and (3) Assistant Warden Blair.
(Doc. no. 1, pp. 1, 4.) Taking all of Plaintiff's factual
allegations as true, as the Court must for purposes of the
present screening, the facts are as follows.
21, 2017, officers called Plaintiff to the officer location
area in his dorm at JSP. (Id. at 5.) Plaintiff
noticed Officer Hattlet waiting to be let into the dorm.
(Id.) A few minutes later, Officer Hattlet entered
the dorm yelling, “where is the smart-mouth
inmate.” (Id.) The dorm officer pointed at
Plaintiff and told Officer Hattlet to “get this ugly
M-F out of her dormitory.” (Id.) Officer
Hattlet approached Plaintiff and pushed him “fast and
forcefully” toward the entrance of the dorm.
(Id. at 5-6.) Officer Mosley rushed toward Plaintiff
and Officer Hattlet. (Id. at 6.) Both officers
forcefully pushed Plaintiff against a wall by both arms,
slamming Plaintiff face-forward into the wall. (Id.)
Plaintiff instantly felt pain in his face, neck, head, and
shoulder. (Id.) Officers Hattlet and Mosley
handcuffed Plaintiff behind his back and took him toward the
main control and counselor area. (Id. at 6-7.)
Officers Hattlet and Mosley directed Plaintiff toward the
medical and ID area and led him into an ID holding cell.
(Id. at 7.) The officers left Plaintiff in the cell
handcuffed with the door ajar for five to ten minutes.
(Id. at 7-8.)
they returned, Officer Mosley placed blue gloves in his pants
and Officer Hattlet put gloves on his hands. (Id. at
8.) Officer Hattlet told Plaintiff to face the wall, removed
the handcuffs, and asked Plaintiff what he said to the
dormitory officer. (Id.) The officers turned
Plaintiff around but before he could answer, Officer Hattlet
struck Plaintiff twice in his “head, face, neck, and
shoulder area” with a closed fist. (Id. at
9-10.) Plaintiff felt a “very great deal of
pain.” (Id. at 9.) Officer Mosley did not
attempt to stop Officer Hattlet from striking Plaintiff.
(Id.) Officer Mosley then struck Plaintiff once in
the “head, face, neck, and shoulder area.”
(Id. at 10.) Officer Hattlet did not attempt to stop
Officer Mosley from striking Plaintiff. (Id.) Both
officers could have stopped the other from attacking
Plaintiff. (Id. at 11.) Plaintiff did nothing to
cause the officers to attack him and their sole purpose was
to cause Plaintiff harm. (Id. at 10-11.)
being in the cell for one to two hours, Officers Hattlet and
Mosley handcuffed Plaintiff and led him out of the cell.
(Id. at 12.) Plaintiff thought he would receive
medical treatment because they passed the medical department.
(Id.) However, when Plaintiff attempted to stop, the
officers told him to “continue walking.”
(Id. at 12, 15.) Officer Mosley said “you run
your mouth to[o] much, ” put the blue gloves on, and
struck Plaintiff in the face. (Id. at 13.) Plaintiff
almost passed out from the pain but was able to recover.
(Id.) Plaintiff told the officers they should have
killed him because it did not make sense for him to be
assaulted for such a small matter. (Id.) Plaintiff
also told them if they were finished, he was finished.
(Id.) The officers agreed and led Plaintiff to an
isolation holding area pending a disciplinary report hearing.
experienced swelling and bruising where the officers struck
him, but he did not receive medical treatment at that time.
(Id. at 15.) Plaintiff remained in the isolation
holding area for seven days. (Id. at 16.) Medical
staff saw Plaintiff for his injuries, and Plaintiff was in
constant pain and suffering. (Id.) Plaintiff
reported the incident to Assistant Warden Blair, Counselor
Brown, and Mrs. Thomas. (Id.) Upon release from
isolation, Plaintiff returned to his dorm, where he spoke to
the criminal investigative officers about the incident.
(Id.) However, Sgt. Scott approached Plaintiff later
and offered him “store goods” in exchange for
Plaintiff dropping the grievance. (Id.) Plaintiff
has suffered “emotion[al] flash-back[s]” and fear
for his safety as a result of the attack. (Id. at
10.) Furthermore, there is an ongoing pattern of physical
violence at JSP that causes inmates to be “in great
fear of their life.” (Id. at 10.)
relief, Plaintiff requests: declaratory judgment; preliminary
and permanent injunctions prohibiting Officers Hattlet and
Mosley from using threats or violence against Plaintiff or
any other inmates; $15, 000 in compensatory damages against
each Defendant jointly and severally; $35, 000 in punitive
damages and $35, 000 in compensatory damages against
Assistant Warden Blair; $75, 000 in punitive damages against
Officers Hattlet and Mosley jointly and severally; and costs
of the suit. (Id. at 20-21.)
Standard for Screening.
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). A claim is
frivolous if it “lacks an arguable basis either in law
or in fact.” Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S.
319, 327 (1989). “Failure to state a claim under §
1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) is governed by the same standard as
dismissal for failure to state a claim under Fed.R.Civ.P.
12(b)(6).” Wilkerson v. H & S, Inc., 366
Fed.Appx. 49, 51 (11th Cir. 2010) (citing Mitchell v.
Farcass, 112 F.3d 1483, 1490 (11th Cir. 1997)).
avoid dismissal for failure to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted, the allegations in the complaint must
“state a claim for relief that is plausible on its
face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
544, 570 (2007). “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.” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). That is,
“[f]actual allegations must be enough to raise a right
to relief above the speculative level.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. While Rule 8(a) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure does not require detailed
factual allegations, “it demands more than an
unadorned, the defendant unlawfully-harmed-me
accusation.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. A
complaint is insufficient if it “offers ‘labels
and conclusions' or ‘a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action, '” or if it
“tenders ‘naked assertions' devoid of
‘further factual ...