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Reginald Williams v. Suffolk Ccounty et al

December 28, 2012

REGINALD WILLIAMS, PLAINTIFF,
v.
SUFFOLK CCOUNTY ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Joseph F. Bianco, District Judge:

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

his grievance because he was told by prison officials that there was nothing the grievance

Pro se plaintiff Reginald Williams process could do, and that he should get in ("Williams" or "plaintiff") brought this contact with Internal Affairs. Thus, given action against Suffolk County and three these allegations, the motion for judgment John Doe corrections officers (collectively, on the pleadings for failure to exhaust is "defendants") alleging violations of denied. However, defendants can raise this Williams' constitutional rights pursuant to issue again in a motion for summary 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff alleges that three judgment after discovery has taken place. corrections officers physically assaulted him on May 26, 2011.

I. BACKGROUND

Defendants now move for judgment on A. Factual Background the pleadings, pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(c). For the reasons set The following facts are taken from the forth below, defendants' motion is denied. complaint and plaintiff's Affidavit in Specifically, defendants have failed to Opposition of Motion ("Pl.'s Opp.") and are satisfy their burden, at this stage, of proving not findings of fact by the Court. These that plaintiff has failed to exhaust his allegations are assumed to be true for the administrative remedies, because plaintiff purpose of deciding this motion and are has adequately alleged that he did not construed in a light most favorable to the exhaust those remedies due to a plaintiff, the non-moving party. misrepresentation by prison officials. In particular, plaintiff alleges that he withdrew

Plaintiff is an inmate at the Suffolk B. Procedural Background County Correctional Facility ("SCCF").

Plaintiff alleges that on May 26, 2011, while Plaintiff filed a complaint in this action waiting to be transported to court, three on October 24, 2011. Defendants answered corrections officers physically assaulted him the complaint on February 24, 2012. because he failed to cease his conversation Defendants then filed a motion for judgment with another inmate. (Compl. at 4.) on the pleadings on June 12, 2012. In Specifically, plaintiff alleges that he was anticipation of this motion, plaintiff filed an handcuffed, punched in the face and head, Affidavit in Opposition on June 11, 2012. and kicked. (Id.) Officers then allegedly proceeded to jump on top of his right ankle

II. STANDARD OF REVIEW

several times. (Id.) Courts evaluate a motion for judgment

Plaintiff states that he unsuccessfully on the pleadings pursuant to Federal Rule of attempted to receive medical attention for Civil Procedure 12(c) under the same two days. (Id.) When he was brought to the standard as a motion pursuant to Federal hospital, plaintiff was allegedly diagnosed Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) for failure with "torn tissues" and a sprained ankle. to state a claim. See Hayden v.

Paterson, (Id.) Plaintiff received an air cast and 594 F.3d 150, 160 (2d Cir. 2010). In crutches for the injury to his ankle. (Id.) reviewing a motion to dismiss pursuant to

Rule 12(b)(6), the Court must accept the

Plaintiff filed a grievance with SCCF factual allegations set forth in the complaint officials. (Zwilling Affirmation ("Zwilling as true and draw all reasonable inferences in Affirm") ¶ 4.) However, before his favor of the plaintiff. See Cleveland v. grievance could be resolved, plaintiff Caplaw Enters., 448 F.3d 518, 521 (2d Cir. withdrew the grievance. (Zwilling Affirm, 2006); Nechis v. Oxford Health Plans, Inc., Ex. C.) 421 F.3d 96, 100 (2d Cir. 2005). "In order to survive a motion to dismiss under Rule In his complaint, in connection with the 12(b)(6), a complaint must allege a plausible grievance he filed, plaintiff states that prison set of facts sufficient 'to raise a right to officials "told [him] they can't do anything, relief above the speculative level.'" [and] that [he] had to call Internal Affairs." Operating Local 649 Annuity Trust Fund v. (Compl. at 2.) Plaintiff reiterates this Smith Barney Fund Mgmt. LLC, 595 F.3d statement in his Affidavit in Opposition of 86, 91 (2d Cir. 2010) (quoting Bell Atl. Motion. Plaintiff states that he filed a Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 grievance but "was told to get in contact (2007)). This standard does not require with Internal Affairs, that there was nothing "heightened fact pleading of specifics, but the grievance committ[ee] could do." (Pl.'s only enough facts to state a claim to relief Opp. at 1.) Plaintiff allegedly contacted that is plausible on its face." Twombly, 550 Internal Affairs, and was told that it would U.S. at 570. investigate the matter. (Id. at 2.) A prison official noted on the grievance withdrawal The Supreme Court clarified the form that plaintiff "may pursue this matter appropriate pleading standard in Ashcroft v. through the Internal Affairs unit." (Zwilling Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009), setting forth a Affirm, Ex. C.) two-pronged approach for courts deciding a motion to dismiss. The Court instructed district courts to first "identify[ ] pleadings

that, because they are no more than McEachin v. McGuinnis, 357 F.3d 197, 200 conclusions, are not entitled to the (2d Cir. 2004). A pro se plaintiff's assumption of truth." 556 U.S. at 679. complaint, while liberally interpreted, still Though "legal conclusions can provide the must "'state a claim to relief that is plausible framework of a complaint, they must be on its face.'" Mancuso v. Hynes, 379 F. supported by factual allegations." Id. App'x 60, 61 (2d Cir. 2010) (quoting Iqbal, Second, if a complaint contains "well- 556 U.S. at 678); see also Harris v. Mills, pleaded factual allegations, a court should 572 ...


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