United States District Court, D. Connecticut
RAYMOND J. CERILLI, Plaintiff,
DANNEL P. MALLOY, et al., Defendants.
INITIAL REVIEW ORDER
R. Underhill United States District Judge
J. Cerilli, currently confined at MacDougall-Walker
Correctional Institution in Suffield, Connecticut, filed this
case pro se under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Cerilli
alleges that the defendants have been deliberately
indifferent to his serious medical and mental health needs.
Cerilli names as defendants Governor Dannel P. Malloy,
Commissioner Scott Semple, Dr. G. Gerbino, Dr. G. Valletta,
APRN Lea Pannella, APRN Tim Bombard, PRN J. Augusto, Dr. Ted
Lawlor, Supervisor J. Wu, and John Doe Mental Health 1-99.
The complaint was filed on December 16, 2016. Cerilli's
motion to proceed in forma pauperis was granted on
January 4, 2017.
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. § 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
plausible 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
alleges that he has been denied “real mental health
medication.” ECF No. 1 at 9, ¶ 12. Instead Drs.
Gerbino and Valletta have prescribed Elavil, which Cerilli
describes as poison. Cerilli experienced “big blood
marks” over his body after taking Elavil. Id.
at 13, ¶ 27(5).
Lawlor wants to prescribe a new heart medication and more
“fake mental health drugs” for Cerilli.
Id. at 17-18, ¶ 43. September 2014 medical
records attached to the complaint indicate that Cerilli
believes that only oxycodone are fentanyl “real”
medications. Id. at 31.
Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) amended the statute
governing proceedings filed in forma pauperis. In
relevant part, Section 804(d) of the PLRA amended 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915 by adding the following subsection:
(g) In no event shall a prisoner bring a civil action or
appeal a judgment in a civil action or proceeding under this
section if the prisoner has, on 3 or more prior occasions,
while incarcerated or detained in any facility, brought an
action or appeal in a court of the United States that was
dismissed on the grounds that it is frivolous, malicious, or
fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted,
unless the prisoner is under imminent danger of serious
provision of the PLRA requires the denial of Cerilli's
motion to proceed in forma pauperis in this case.
Cerilli previously has had more than three cases or appeals
dismissed as frivolous. See Cerilli v. Meachum,
3:95-cv-00113 (DJS) (dismissed January 19, 1995); Cerilli
v. Connecticut, 3:98-cv-01370 (AHN) (dismissed June 16,
1999); Cerilli v. Williams, 3:98-cv-01703 (DJS)
(dismissed February 26, 1999); and Cerilli v.
Connecticut, 3:99-cv-01058 (GLG) (dismissed October 14,
the three strikes provision applies, Cerilli may not bring
the present action without payment of the filing fee absent
allegations of “imminent danger of serious physical
injury.” See Pettus v. Morgenthau, 554 F.3d
293, 297 (2d Cir. 2009) (“indigent three-strikes
prisoner [may] proceed IFP in order to obtain a judicial
remedy for an imminent danger”). To proceed without
prepayment of the filing fee, Cerilli must meet two
requirements: he must show (1) the imminent danger of serious
physical injury he alleges is fairly traceable to unlawful
conduct alleged in the complaint, and (2) that a favorable
judicial outcome would redress the injury. See Id.
at 296-97. In addition, the danger of imminent harm must be
present at the time the complaint is filed. See Id.
Court granted Cerilli's motion to proceed in forma
pauperis because he included as defendants health care
providers at his current place of incarceration, and alleged
that he is suffering serious reactions to his medications.
The complaint, however, contains no specific allegations
against many defendants. Defendants Semple, Malloy, Bombard,
Pannella, Augusto and Wu are not referenced in the statement
of facts. Although some of these defendants are referenced in
the attached documents, it is not clear how these defendants
have subjected Cerilli to an imminent danger of serious
physical harm in December 2016.
example, Cerilli has attached to his complaint an inmate
request that was denied by defendant Augusto. Cerilli dated
the grievance November 15, 2015, but it was rejected on
October 26, 2015. ECF No. 1 at 104. Defendant
Augusto also dealt with two other attached inmate requests,
noting on one that Cerilli had been seen by the doctor in
response to the request and rejecting the other as a
duplicate. The only action by Commissioner Semple is a letter
dated July 18, 2014, in which Commissioner Semple informed
Cerilli of the proper procedures to request Protective
Custody, seek Health Services and make FOI requests.
Id. at 40. He also was copied on a July 2016 letter
to Cerilli from Mary Ellen Castro in which she responded to a
letter Cerilli sent the Commissioner, id. at 46, and
an October 2015 inmate request in which Cerilli complains
about injuries suffered in a 2014 truck accident.
Id. at 109.
cannot determine from the current complaint whether Cerilli
was in imminent danger of serious physical harm on December
16, 2016, the day he filed his complaint. The attached
exhibits, including medical records from 1998 through 2016,
do not clarify the allegations. Accordingly, Cerilli is
directed to file an amended complaint to clarify his claims.
The amended complaint shall include specific allegations
against each defendant explaining what actions each defendant
took, or failed to take, that caused Cerilli to be in
imminent danger of serious physical harm in December 2016.
The current complaint ...