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Johnson v. Miner

August 13, 2007

DAMIAN JOHNSON, PLAINTIFF
v.
JONATHAN C. MINER, ET AL., DEFENDANTS



The opinion of the court was delivered by: J. Andrew Smyser Magistrate Judge

(Judge Munley)

(Magistrate Judge Smyser)

ORDER

The plaintiff, a federal prisoner proceeding pro se, commenced this action by filing a complaint on February 26, 2007.

The defendants named in the complaint are the following officials and employees at the United States Penitentiary at Allenwood (USP-Allenwood): Jonathan C. Miner, the Warden; R. Hanson, a captain; Matthews, a special investigation agent; K. Dewald, the Assistant Health Services Administrator; Caprio, a lieutenant; Bastain, a corrections officer; and John Does, corrections officers.

The plaintiff alleges that on June 22, 2006, defendants Bastain, Caprio, Matthews and John Does used excessive force on him. He alleges that as he was leaving the unit he was stopped and thoroughly searched by defendant Bastain. He alleges that after he was searched, he was ordered to step back inside the unit and as he did so defendant Bastain exclaimed: "he has it in his mouth!. Its in his mouth!." The plaintiff alleges that although he was cooperative, defendant Bastain used unnecessary excessive force on him by wrestling him to floor, choking him, and placing his hand in his eye and trying to dig his eye out of the socket. The plaintiff alleges that defendants Caprio, Matthews, and John Does assisted in the assault by stepping on parts of his body and by twisting his arms and legs to the point of trying to break them. The plaintiff alleges that he sustained injuries to his left eye, shoulder and knee.

The plaintiff alleges that defendant Bastain has repeatedly engaged the use of excessive force against other inmates in the past. He alleges that defendants Miner and Hanson were on notice of the abusive conduct of defendants Bastain, Caprio, Matthews and John Does but that they failed to take disciplinary action or otherwise control the behavior of the other defendants.

The plaintiff alleges that after the incident he was taken to the hospital unit where a physician's assistant looked him over visually but did not provide him with any medical attention. The plaintiff alleges that he was then placed in a dry cell.

The plaintiff alleges that on June 22, 2006, he was served with a lock up order stating that he was being placed in the Special Housing Unit (SHU) under investigation. He alleges that on June 26, 2006, he received a second lock up order stating that he was being placed under investigation for conduct which disrupts the orderly running of the institution. The plaintiff alleges that in response to his requests and grievances it was alleged that force had been used against him because he swallowed drugs and thereby posed a threat to himself. He alleges that he was given a urinalysis test which came back negative and refuted the allegation that he swallowed drugs.

The plaintiff appears to be claiming that his placement in the SHU violated his due process rights.

The plaintiff claims that the use of excessive force by defendants Bastain, Caprio, Matthews and John Does violated the Eighth Amendment and constituted assault and battery.

The plaintiff claims that defendant Miner and Hanson's failure to take disciplinary action or curb a known pattern of physical abuse of inmates by defendant Bastain constitutes deliberate indifference and proximately caused the violation of the plaintiff's due process and Eighth Amendment rights and constituted assault and battery.

The plaintiff claims that the failure of defendant Dewald to provide adequate medical care, a follow up examination and treatment for ...


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