United States District Court, D. Connecticut
JEAN K. CONQUISTADOR, Plaintiff,
LIEUTENANT ADIMITIS, Defendant.
INITIAL REVIEW ORDER
MICHAEL P. SHEA UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
plaintiff, Jean K. Conquistador, is confined at the Hartford
Correctional Center. He has filed a civil complaint under 42
U.S.C. § 1983 against Correctional Lieutenant Adimitis.
For the reasons set forth below, the court dismisses the
complaint in part and directs the plaintiff to show cause why
the remaining claims in the complaint should not be dismissed
for failure to fully exhaust administrative remedies prior to
filing this action.
Standard of Review
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 a 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)).
Despite the requirement that a plaintiff plead sufficient
facts to state a plausible claim for relief, courts still
have an obligation to construe “[p]ro se
complaints . . . ‘liberally and interpret [them] 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
plaintiff states that on July 2, 2018, at Hartford
Correctional Center, he informed Lieutenant Adimitis that
gang members had threatened to attack him as soon as
correctional staff opened his cell door. See Compl.,
ECF No. 1, at 3 ¶¶ 1-2. The plaintiff requested to
be moved to another unit for his own safety. See Id.
¶¶ 3-4. In response to this information and
request, Lieutenant Adimitis stated “we are all men
here” and walked away from the plaintiff. See
Id. ¶ 5.
that day, an inmate entered the plaintiff's cell and
stabbed the plaintiff in the head and punched the plaintiff
in the face. See Id. at 4 ¶¶ 6-7. An
officer escorted the plaintiff to the medical unit and
medical staff members treated the plaintiff's injuries.
See Id. ¶ 8. Medical/Mental Health staff
members placed the plaintiff on behavior observation
status/suicide watch. See Id. at 5 ¶ 12. Prison
officials charged the inmate who had attacked the plaintiff
with assault and transferred the inmate to the restrictive
housing unit. See Id. at 4 ¶ 11.
3, 2018, medical/mental health staff members discharged the
plaintiff to general population. See Id. at 5 ¶
13. Later that day, the plaintiff confronted Lieutenant
Adimitis about the decision not to transfer him to another
unit for his safety. See Id. ¶ 14. Lieutenant
Adimitis stated that he did not like the plaintiff because
the plaintiff had filed lawsuits against the Department of
Correction in the past. See Id. ¶ 15.
Lieutenant Adimitis refused to answer further questions posed
by the plaintiff and told the plaintiff to “get out of
[my] face.” See Id. ¶ 16.
plaintiff claims that the defendant violated his First,
Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment rights. In addition, he
contends that the conduct of the defendant constituted
negligence. He sues the defendant in his official and
individual capacities for monetary damages.
Eighth Amendment Claim
preliminary matter, the court notes that Department of
Correction records reflect that the plaintiff had not been
convicted or sentenced at the time of the incidents that
occurred at Hartford Correctional Center in July
2018. The Second Circuit has recently confirmed
that a pretrial detainee's claim of deliberate
indifference to conditions of confinement, including health
and safety, is “governed by the Due Process Clause of
the Fourteenth Amendment, rather than the Cruel and Unusual
Punishments Clause of the Eighth Amendment . . . because
“[p]retrial detainees have not been convicted of a
crime and thus may not be punished in any manner- neither
cruelly and unusually nor otherwise.” Darnell v.
Pineiro, 849 F.3d 17, 29 (2d Cir. 2017) (internal
quotation marks and citations omitted). Because the plaintiff
was a pretrial detainee at the time of the incidents that
form the basis of his claims against the defendant, the
Eighth Amendment claim is dismissed for failure to state a
claim upon which relief may be granted. See 28
U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1).
First and ...