United States District Court, D. Connecticut
INITIAL REVIEW ORDER
MICHAEL P. SHEA, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Dwayne Sayles, currently incarcerated at the Garner
Correctional Institution in Somers, Connecticut, filed this
case under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He asserts federal claims
for use of excessive force and retaliation as well as state
law claims for assault and battery. The plaintiff names six
defendants in his amended complaint: Lieutenant Congelos,
Correctional Officer Diorio, Correctional Officer Ortyl,
Nurse Balatka, Lieutenant Guimond, and Correctional Officer
Eshou. He seeks damages and injunctive and declaratory.
Court 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. This requirement
applies to all prisoner filings regardless whether the
prisoner pays the filing fee. Nicholson v.
Lenczewski, 356 F.Supp.2d 157, 159 (D. Conn. 2005)
(citing Carr v. Dvorin, 171 F.3d 115 (2d Cir. 1999)
(per curiam)). Here, the plaintiff is proceeding in forma
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
incident underlying this action occurred while the plaintiff
was a pretrial detainee confined at Northern Correctional
Institution. ECF No. 10, ¶¶ 4-7. On July 22, 2016
the plaintiff was confined on in-cell restraint status, which
consisted of shackles and handcuffs connected by a tether
chain. Id., ¶ 8. He had been placed on this
status for assaulting a correctional officer. Id.,
¶ 9. Correctional policy requires that inmates on
in-cell restraint status have their restraints checked
periodically. Id., ¶ 10.
22, 2016, defendants Congelos, Ortyl, Diorio and Eshou came
to perform this routine check. They did not bring a video
camera to record the incident. Id., ¶ 11.
Defendants Diorio and Ortyl held the plaintiff's arms
while defendant Congelos checked the restraints. Defendant
Ortyl struck the plaintiff in the head with a closed fist.
Id., ¶ 12. The plaintiff had not made any
threatening movements toward the officers. Id.,
¶ 13. Defendant Congelos sprayed a chemical agent in the
plaintiff's face while defendants Ortyl, Diorio, and
Eshou continued to strike him. Id., ¶¶
14-15. Additional staff responded to the incident and
defendant Guimond sprayed the plaintiff with a chemical
agent. Id., ¶ 16.
plaintiff was denied a shower to remove the chemical agent
for several hours and experienced burning on his skin.
Id., ¶ 17. He sustained lacerations to his
forehead and left inner wrist, knee pain, a black eye, and
broke blood vessels in his right eye. Id., ¶
18. Defendant Balatka refused to document or treat these
injuries. Id., ¶ 19.
plaintiff alleges that the defendants acted with deliberate
indifference to his safety in violation of his rights under
the Fourteenth Amendment. More specifically, the Court
considers the complaint to assert claims for use of excessive
force and deliberate indifference to medical needs.
plaintiff alleges that the defendants used excessive force
against him. As he was a pretrial detainee when the incident
occurred, his claim is addressed under the Fourteenth
Amendment. See Darnell v. Pineiro, 849 F.3d 17, 29
(2d Cir. 2017) (deliberate indifference claims of pretrial
detainees considered under Fourteenth, rather than Eighth,
Kingsley v. Hendrickson, U.S., 135 S.Ct. 2466
(2015), the Supreme Court concluded that excessive force
claims brought under the Fourteenth Amendment do not require
the same subjective intent standard as claims brought under
the Eighth Amendment. “[A] pretrial detainee must show
only that the force purposely or knowingly used against him
was objectively unreasonable.” Id. at 2472-73.
plaintiff alleges that he was not threatening the officers
while force was used against him. He alleges that he was in
restraints for assaulting a correctional officer, implying
that the force used was retribution for his prior actions.
These allegations are sufficient to state a plausible