United States District Court, D. Connecticut
RULING AND ORDER
W. Thompson United States District Judge
plaintiff, James Harnage, is currently incarcerated at
Corrigan-Radgowski Correctional Institution in Uncasville,
Connecticut. He has filed a complaint pursuant 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983 naming Medical Staff Member Lisa Caldonero, Jane
Does 1-3 and John Does 1-3, Nurses Francis, Caroline, Nikki,
Greene, Marissa and James, Physician Assistant Rob and Drs.
Naqvi and Pillai as defendants. For the reasons set forth
below, the complaint is being dismissed.
to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b), the court must review prisoner
civil complaints against governmental actors and
“dismiss ... any portion of [a] complaint [that] is
frivolous, malicious, or 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.” Id. Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure requires that a complaint contain “a
short and plain statement of the claim showing that the
pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2).
detailed allegations are not required, “a complaint
must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to
state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face. A
claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads
factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable
inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct
alleged.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
(2009) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted). A
complaint that includes only “‘labels and
conclusions, ' ‘a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action' or ‘naked
assertion[s]' devoid of ‘further factual
enhancement, ' ” does not meet the facial
plausibility standard. Id. (quoting Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 557 (2007)).
Although courts still have an obligation to interpret
“a pro se complaint liberally, ” the complaint
must include sufficient factual allegations to meet the
standard of facial plausibility. See Harris v.
Mills, 572 F.3d 66, 72 (2d Cir. 2009) (citations
plaintiff asserts that he was confined at MacDougall-Walker
Correctional Institution (“MacDougall-Walker”)
between August 2012 and July 2016. He generally contends that
he challenged “deficiencies in his medical care”
during this period by filing grievances and legal actions.
Compl., ECF No. 1 at 4, ¶ 16.
27, 2013, the plaintiff observed a medical staff member at
MacDougall-Walker inject an inmate with a dose of insulin and
then use the same needle to withdraw another dose of insulin
from the same bottle and inject it into a second inmate. The
plaintiff immediately reported to prison officials at
MacDougall-Walker that the medical staff member had
contaminated the bottle of insulin using this method. This
incident of insulin contamination allegedly required medical
officials at MacDougall-Walker to review and revise policies
and implement more stringent guidelines regarding the
treatment of diabetic inmates. The plaintiff claims that some
medical staff at MacDougall-Walker were angry because they
believed that the extent of the response to the incident was
excessive and the new guidelines governing treatment of
diabetic inmates who required insulin were unnecessary.
plaintiff contends that immediately after he reported the
incident of insulin contamination, Medical Staff Members
Caldonero, Jane Does 1-3 and John Does 1-3, Nurses Francis,
Caroline, Nikki, Greene, Marissa and James and Physician
Assistant Rob began to give him a hard time with regard to
his requests for refills and renewals of his various
prescriptions. These defendants would either deny or
unreasonably delay the renewals or refills of all of his
prescriptions, but in particular his prescription for
Ibuprofen. The plaintiff states that he had been prescribed
Ibuprofen to treat pain in his back, hip and wrist.
several occasions, Dr. Naqvi or Dr. Pillai examined the
plaintiff and renewed several of his prescriptions, including
his prescription for Ibuprofen. The plaintiff claims that, on
these occasions, medical staff never dispensed Ibuprofen to
him and failed to dispense the other prescribed medications
in a timely manner.
delays in refilling, renewing or dispensing the medications
sometimes lasted for five to six weeks. The plaintiff claims
that when he was unable to take Ibuprofen, he experienced
severe pain and his dominant hand became swollen and
difficult to move.
plaintiff contends that defendants failed to refill or renew
his medication prescriptions and dispense the medications in
a timely manner in retaliation for his bringing the insulin
contamination incident to the attention of prison/medical
officials. The plaintiff also believes that the defendants
intentionally delayed refilling or renewing his prescriptions
in response to a mandate, initiated by Dr. Wu, directing
medical staff at all prison facilities to “take drastic
measures to reduce costs.” Compl., ECF No. 1 at 5,
plaintiff claims that he is indigent and cannot buy Ibuprofen
from the commissary. He states that he was successful in
exhausting his administrative remedies regarding his claim of
untimely refills and renewals of his prescription for
Ibuprofen and other medications.
plaintiff contends that the defendants conspired to deny him
medical treatment in violation of his Eighth Amendment
rights, retaliated against him in violation of his First and
Seventh Amendment rights and failed to provide him with the
same treatment provided to other inmates who were similarly
situated in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the
Fourteenth Amendment rights. He also claims that the
defendants violated Article 1, §§ 1, 4, 5, 10, 14,
20 of the Connecticut Constitution. He sues the defendants in
their individual capacities only.
Seventh Amendment Claim
plaintiff alleges that the defendants violated his rights
under the Seventh Amendment to the Constitution. The Seventh
Amendment provides: “In Suits at common law . . . the
right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried
by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the
United States, than according to the rules of the common
law.” The ...