United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
LIONEL S. LAWRENCE, SR., Plaintiff
SUPERINTENDENT DAUPHIN COUNTY PRISON, et al., Defendants
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
E. Schwab United States Magistrate Judge
16, 2017, this Court granted pro se plaintiff,
Lionel Lawrence, Sr. (“Lawrence”), leave to file
an amended complaint. Doc. 10. After screening
Lawrence's amended complaint, we conclude that it fails
to state a claim upon which relief may be granted and that
granting Lawrence further leave to amend would be futile.
Therefore, we recommend that the claims be dismissed without
further leave to amend.
Factual Background and Procedural History.
Lawrence's Initial Complaint.
November 15, 2016, Lawrence, proceeding pro se,
commenced this 42 U.S.C. § 1983 case by filing a
complaint and a motion for leave to proceed in forma
pauperis. Docs. 1, 6. In the caption
of his complaint, Lawrence listed several defendants, some of
which were unnamed. Doc. 1. at 1. On the second
page, however, Lawrence specifically named the following
defendants: (1) Joseph Gavazzi, Dauphin County District
Attorney; (2) Edward Marisco, Jr., Dauphin County District
Attorney; (3) Judge John F. Cherry; (4) Randy Mumma,
Probation and Parole Officer; (5) Superintendent of the
Dauphin County Prison; (6) the Dauphin County Public
Defender's Office; and (7) Bobby Sisock; Deputy Court
Administrator. Id. at 2. Thus, we treated the
allegations in the complaint as being brought against these
specifically named defendants, but noted that in his amended
complaint, he should clarify who he is suing. Doc.
10 at 2 n.1.
alleged that during his time in the Dauphin County Prison as
a pre-trial detainee, he was subject to cruel and unusual
punishment by the Superintendent, the staff, and the
administrative officials. Doc. 1 at 3. He further
alleged that at the time of his detainment, he was disabled
and that his civil rights were violated by the prison, the
city of Harrisburg, Dauphin County, the District
Attorney's office, the Public Defender's office, the
Probation and Parole Office, the Superintendent, municipal
and state prison administrators, and the judges who set his
bail. Id. Lawrence complained that he was detained
for 22 or 23 hours a day with other inmates in the
Restrictive Housing Unit. Id. He also complained
that during meals, he was forced to eat near the toilet which
smells of sewer, that the cells have no air, heat, or open
windows, and that mice and bugs run around the cells.
Id. Lawrence stated that during this time, he became
very sick, but he was not provided with medical assistance.
Id. He also stated that he had rashes all over his
body as a result of not being able to take showers and that
he was forced to “wash up” in the cells sometimes
without soap, washcloths, toothbrushes or toothpaste, and
other hygienic items. Id. Lawrence stated that he
filed ten grievances with the Dauphin County Prison, but
never received a reply back because his complaints were
thrown away. Id. at 4-5.
alleged that these facts constituted violations of the Fifth,
Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments. Id. at 3-5.
Furthermore, he stated that the defendants violated the
American Disability Act, the Pre-Trial Detainee Law, and the
False Imprisonment Law. Id. at 5. Lawrence requested
that the defendants be terminated and imprisoned, and he also
sought $60 million in damages from Dauphin County including
$20 million in nominal damages, $20 million in punitive
damages, and $20 million in compensatory damages.
reviewing the complaint, we concluded that it failed to state
a claim. On May 16, 2017, we granted Lawrence leave to file
an amended complaint. Doc. 10. On June 14, 2017,
Lawrence filed his amended complaint. Doc. 11.
Lawrence's Amended Complaint.
names the following as defendants in his amended complaint:
Edward M. Marsico, Jr., District Attorney; (2) John F.
Cherry, Judge; (3) Randy Mumma, Probation and Parole Office;
(4) “Superintendent, Et-Al”, Dauphin County
Prison; and (5) Joseph Gavazzi. Id. at
2. Lawrence alleges that these defendants violated the
Fourteenth, Eighth, and Fifth Amendments, as well as the
“Due Process Clause Law, ” the American
Disability Act (ADA), the Pre-Trial Detainee Law, the False
Imprisonment Law, and the “Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Law.” Id. at 5. Lawrence requests money
damages, as well as injunctive and declaratory relief.
Id. at 3. He also requests $20 million in nominal
damages for “rights violated, ” $20 million in
punitive damages for “hurt-you-on-purpose” harm,
and $20 million in compensatory damages for physical harm
the amended complaint is 68 pages long,  only the first 20
pages contain allegations. The latter portion consists of
exhibits, recitations of case law, and copied sections of the
Legal Bulletins from the Lewisburg Prison Project, the
Prisoner's Self-Help Litigation Manual, and of the ADA.
Id. at 20-68. When screening an amended complaint,
we look only at the allegations as presented. To the extent
that Lawrence intends for these attachments to be part of his
allegations, he has not cited to them or explained their
significance. Thus, we will not consider the attachments as
setting forth allegations.
states that he and other inmates are locked in their cells
with no air conditioning or heat for 22 to 23 hours a day as
if they are in the Restrictive Housing Unit, the “Hole,
” or in the Segregated Housing Unit. Id. at
10. Lawrence alleges that when food is delivered to his cell,
he is forced to eat next to the toilet, which he claims is a
civil rights violation. Id. at 11. Lawrence also
alleges that the Dauphin County Prison has a large area for
inmates to enjoy recreational time, but that the
“Ground Hogs” own it. Id. When inmates
are released for recreational time, Lawrence claims they only
have a walkway and a trash can on which to play cards.
Id. Lawrence next states that he is charged as an
inmate for room and board at an amount of $10 per day and
claims this is a civil rights violation. Id. at
states that pretrial detainees have a right to be free from
cruel and unusual punishment and that the Eighth Amendment
forbids cruel and unusual punishments, unsanitary, dangerous,
or overly restrictive conditions. Id. Lawrence
alleges that when the Dauphin County Prison is overcrowded,
the Prison and Prison Staff do not exercise inmates, do not
allow the inmates out of their cells, do not allow the
inmates to exercise, and do ...