United States District Court, D. Connecticut
INITIAL REVIEW ORDER
R. UNDERHILL, District Judge.
plaintiff, Ian Cooke, is currently confined at Garner
Correctional Institution. He has filed an Amended Complaint
pursuant 42 U.S.C. Â§ 1983 naming as defendants a former
commissioner of correction, two directors of the Department
of Correction security division, five employees of Cheshire
Correctional Institution, legal counsel for the Department of
Correction and the current Commissioner of Correction. Cooke
has also filed a motion for an initial review order, a motion
seeking disclosure of the full names of the defendants, a
motion to amend to add the text of several State of
Connecticut Administrative Directives as exhibits and a
motion for order. For the reasons set forth below, the court
will deny the motions and will direct Cooke to file an
Motion for Order [Doc. No. 12]
application to proceed in forma pauperis included a
section in which Cooke agreed to permit the Department of
Correction to deduct money from his inmate account to pay the
full filing fee of $350.00. Cooke contends that on one
occasion in March 2016, the Department of Correction deducted
too much money from his account towards the payment of the
filing fee. Cooke does not assert that he made any prior
efforts to resolve this issue with Department of Correction
inmate accounts staff prior to filing this motion. He seeks a
court order directing the Department of Correction to
reimburse his account $58.05.
Department of Correction has not forwarded any money from
Cooke's inmate account to the court towards the payment
of the filing fee. It is my understanding that the Department
of Correction waits to forward any money to the Clerk until
the full amount of the filing fee has been collected from the
has not alleged that he will suffer imminent harm if the
relief requested is not granted. When he commenced this
action, he agreed to have money deducted from his inmate
account towards payment of the full $350.00 filing fee in
this action. If he disagrees with the amount of money
deducted by correctional staff working in the office handling
inmate accounts, he should contact office staff to attempt to
resolve the issue. The motion (doc. # 12) is denied.
Amended Complaint [Doc. No. 8]
section 1915A of Title 28 of the United States Code, I must
review prisoner civil complaints and dismiss any portion of
the complaint that is frivolous or malicious, that fails to
state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or that seeks
monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such
relief. 28 U.S.C. Â§ 1915A. Although detailed allegations are
not required, the complaint must include sufficient facts to
afford the defendants fair notice of the claims and the
grounds upon which they are based and to demonstrate a right
to relief. Bell Atlantic v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544,
555-56 (2007). Conclusory allegations are not sufficient.
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). The
plaintiff must plead "enough facts to state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face." Twombly,
550 U.S. at 570. Nevertheless, it is well-established that
"[ p ] ro se complaints must be
construed liberally and interpreted to raise the strongest
arguments that they suggest.'" Sykes v. Bank of
Am., 723 F.3d 399, 403 (2d Cir. 2013) (quoting
Triestman v. Fed. Bureau of Prisons, 470 F.3d 471,
474 (2d Cir. 2006)); see also Tracy v.
Freshwater, 623 F.3d 90, 101-02 (2d Cir. 2010)
(discussing special rules of solicitude for pro se
Failure to Comply with Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil
first defect with the Amended Complaint is that it does not
comply with Rule 8's pleading requirements. Fed.R.Civ.P.
8(a)(2). Rule 8(a)(2) requires that a complaint contain
"a short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief." Rule 8(d)(1)
provides that "[e]ach allegation must be simple, concise
and direct." The purpose of Rule 8 is "to permit
the defendant to have a fair understanding of what the
plaintiff is complaining about and to know whether there is a
legal basis for recovery." Ricciuti v. N.Y.C.
Transit Auth., 941 F.2d 119, 123 (2d Cir. 1991)
(citation omitted). In addition, "the rule serves to
sharpen the issues to be litigated and to confine discovery
and the presentation of evidence at trial within reasonable
bounds." Powell v. Marine Midland Bank, 162
F.R.D. 15, 16 (N.D.N.Y. 1995) (citation and quotation
omitted). The plaintiff's statement of his claim
"should be short because "[u]nnecessary prolixity
in a pleading places an unjustified burden on the court and
the party who must respond to it because they are forced to
select the relevant material from a mass of verbiage."
Salahuddin v. Cuomo, 861 F.2d 40, 42 (2d Cir. 1988)
(quoting 5 C. Wright & A. Miller, Federal Practice and
Procedure Â§ 1281, at 365 (1969)).
litigant does not comply with Rule 8's requirements, the
court may strike any portion of the complaint that is
redundant or immaterial pursuant to Rule 12(f). Fed.R.Civ.P.
12(f). Alternatively, it may dismiss the complaint in its
entirety in those cases "in which the complaint is so
confused, ambiguous, vague, or otherwise unintelligible that
its true substance, if any, is well disguised."
Saluddin, 861 F.2d at 42. In Saluddin for
example, the Second Circuit, found "no doubt" that
plaintiff's complaint, which "span[ned] 15
single-spaced pages and contain[ed] explicit descriptions of
20-odd defendants, their official positions, and their roles
in the alleged denials of Salahuddin's rights..., "
failed to comply with Rule 8's requirement of a
"short and plain statement." Id. at 43.
Accordingly, the court stated that "the district court
was within the bounds of discretion to strike or dismiss the
complaint for noncompliance with Rule 8." Id.
instant case, Cooke's Amended Complaint is neither
"short and plain" nor "simple." The
Amended Complaint consists of forty-two single-spaced, typed
pages containing 178 paragraphs and refers to a time period
from February 2013 to January 2016. It includes at least
seven different claims that occurred at two different prison
Cheshire Correctional Institution
alleges that, in February 2013, Correctional Officer
Deschaine unlawfully searched his cell for three hours and
confiscated various pieces of his personal property,
including paintings, art materials, art books, magazines,
photographs, clothing and music CDs. Lieutenant Hogan then
searched Cooke's property a second time. Cooke received
two disciplinary reports, one for security tampering and one
for possessing ...