Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Gonzalez v. Maurer

United States District Court, D. Connecticut

October 10, 2017

VICTOR GONZALEZ, Plaintiff,
v.
DR. KATHLEEN MAURER, et al. Defendants.

          INITIAL REVIEW ORDER

          JEFFREY ALKER MEYER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         Plaintiff Victor Gonzalez is a prisoner of the State of Connecticut. He has filed a pro se complaint alleging that prison officials have denied him the right to medical care for his deteriorating vision. I will allow his Eighth Amendment claim against some of the defendants to proceed but will otherwise dismiss his remaining claims for failure to allege plausible grounds for relief.

         Background

         Plaintiff filed his pro se complaint on September 6, 2017, and he has named the following defendants: Dr. Kathleen Maurer, Director of Health Services for the Connecticut Department of Correction, Nurse Sharon Burke, Nurse April Ralaph, Correctional Officer Melendez, and Nurse John/Jane Doe 1, and Nurse John/Jane Doe 2. The following facts are assumed to be true solely for purposes of my initial evaluation of the adequacy of the allegations of the complaint.

         Plaintiff was admitted in 2012 to MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution (“MacDougall-Walker”). Pursuant to a prison regulation that forbids inmates to have name-brand eyeglasses, Officer Melendez in his capacity as the prison's property officer confiscated plaintiff's eyeglasses upon his admission to the MacDougall-Walker facility.

         Prison officials then barred plaintiff's family from giving him another pair of eyeglasses, and plaintiff's eyesight began to deteriorate without his glasses. Plaintiff asked to see an optometrist, but no optometrist examined him during his time at MacDougall-Walker.

         On April 13, 2015, plaintiff was transferred to Cheshire Correctional Institution (“Cheshire”). There he received a new pair of eyeglasses. But despite plaintiff's requests to see an optometrist and being told that he was on the waiting list, no optometrist examined him while he was at Cheshire. Nurse Burke was allegedly responsible for scheduling plaintiff to see the optometrist at Cheshire.

         On May 10, 2017, plaintiff's attorney contacted Dr. Maurer about plaintiff's deteriorating eyesight and requested that plaintiff be seen by an optometrist right away. But Dr. Maurer allegedly did not make arrangements for plaintiff to be examined by an optometrist.

         According to plaintiff, he was transferred to Garner Correctional Institution (“Garner”) in retaliation for his attorney's complaint to Dr. Maurer. At Garner he asked to see an optometrist but still to this day has not been examined by an optometrist. Nurse Ralaph was allegedly responsible for scheduling plaintiff to see the optometrist at Garner.

         Plaintiff alleges that he can no longer read small or large numbers and that everything is blurry. He believes he is at risk of permanent loss of his eyesight if he is not examined by an optometrist.

         The complaint alleges a claim pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 of deliberate indifference to plaintiff's serious medical needs in violation of the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It also alleges a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Rehabilitation Act, as well as a state law claim for negligence. Plaintiff seeks a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunctive relief. He further demands $750, 000 in compensatory damages and $500, 000 in punitive damages against each defendant.

         Discussion

         Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a), the Court must conduct an initial review of 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. I must accept as true all factual matters alleged in a complaint, although a complaint may not survive unless its factual recitations state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face. See, e.g., Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009); Mastafa v. Chevron Corp., 770 F.3d 170, 177 (2d Cir. 2014) (same). It is otherwise well-established that “pro 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); see also Tracy v. Freshwater, 623 F.3d 90, 101-02 (2d Cir. 2010) (discussing special rules of solicitude for pro se litigants).

         Eighth ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.