United States District Court, D. Connecticut
KEVIN W. CURRYTTO, Plaintiff,
JOHN DOE, et al. Defendants.
RULINGS ON MOTION TO AMEND COMPLAINT [DOC.#19],
MOTION FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL [DOC.#20],
AND MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTIVE RELIEF
Michael P. Shea, United States District Judge
11, 2018, the plaintiff, Kevin W. Currytto, an inmate
currently confined at Osborn Correctional Institution
(“Osborn”) in Somers, Connecticut, brought a
civil action pro se under 42 U.S.C. § 1983
against thirty employees of the Connecticut Department of
Correction (“DOC”) for violating his rights under
the United States Constitution, Connecticut Constitution, and
the Americans with Disabilities Act. He raised four separate
unrelated causes of action against officials at three
separate prison facilities. See Initial Review Order
[Doc.#15] at 2.
10, 2018, this Court dismissed the plaintiff's complaint
without prejudice for failure to comply with Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 20. Initial Review Order at 2-3. The Court
ruled that the plaintiff had improperly joined multiple
unrelated claims in his complaint. Id. In dismissing
the complaint, the Court gave the plaintiff one opportunity
to amend his complaint alleging facts in support of one of
the claims asserted therein. Id. at 3.
18, 2018, the plaintiff filed a motion to amend his complaint
and attached an amended complaint alleging facts in support
of one of his constitutional claims: the Eighth Amendment
claim for deliberate indifference to serious medical needs
for failure to adequately treat his arm injury, heart
condition, and mental health needs. Mot. to Amend Compl.
[Doc.#19]; Am. Compl. [Doc.#19-1]. The plaintiff also filed a
motion for the appointment of counsel [Doc.#20] and a motion
for preliminary injunctive relief [Doc.#21]. For the
following reasons, the Court will GRANT the plaintiff's
motion to amend his complaint, permit his amended complaint
to proceed in part, and DENY the motion for appointment of
counsel. The Court will postpone its ruling on the motion for
preliminary injunctive relief until after the defendants have
had a chance to respond to the motion and to the amended
Motion to Amend Complaint [Doc.#19]
the Court already granted the plaintiff the opportunity to
amend his complaint, and the plaintiff has complied with the
Court's instruction to assert one of the improperly
joined claims in the amended complaint, the Court hereby
GRANTS the motion to amend [Doc.#19] and reopens this case.
The Court will now review the amended complaint under 28
U.S.C. § 1915A.
Standard of Review
28 U.S.C. § 1915A, the 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. 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 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.” Bell Atlantic, 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 se litigants).
amended complaint [Doc.#19-1] alleges that fifteen DOC
officials violated his Eighth Amendment protection against
cruel and unusual punishment by acting with deliberate
indifference to his serious medical needs. The fifteen
defendants are Dr. Vicki Blumberg, Nurse Jane Doe 1, Health
Services Administrator Richard Furey, Dr. Joseph Breton, Dr.
Johnny Wright, Nurse H. O'Connor, Nurse Tiffany Dyle,
Nurse S. Beckford, Nurse Jane Doe 2, Dr. John Doe, Nurse Jane
Doe 3, Nurse Chris Doe, Dr. Leonard Santarrico, Nurse St.
John, and Dr. Matthew Barr. The plaintiff is suing these
defendants for damages and injunctive relief.
plaintiff suffers from chronic neuropathic pain in his right
arm as a result of being bitten by a K-9 dog during an arrest
in Bridgeport in 2010. Am. Compl. ¶ 2. The bite had
punctured and torn his right bicep and triceps and caused
significant nerve damage. Id. at ¶¶ 3-4.
He also suffers from mental illnesses, including
delusional/schizoaffective disorder, and an undiagnosed heart
condition. Id. at ¶¶ 5, 156.
plaintiff was admitted into DOC custody on May 1, 2017 and
placed in the Bridgeport Correctional Center
(“BCC”). Am. Compl. ¶ 1. One week after
admission, he underwent a health screening with Dr. Blumberg.
Id. at ¶¶ 7-8. For his chronic neuropathic
pain, Dr. Blumberg prescribed the plaintiff the pain reliever
Elavil, ibuprofen, and blood pressure medication.
Id. at ¶ 9. The plaintiff was also given an EKG
for his heart condition. Id. at ¶ 10. On May
15, the plaintiff was evaluated by Dr. Dr. Lowthert for
psychiatric issues associated with anxiety. Id. at
¶ 11. Dr. Lowthert offered to prescribed him Remeron and
Trazadone for his anxiety, but the plaintiff declined the
offer and refused the medication. Id. at ¶ 12.
combined medication regimen ultimately caused the plaintiff
to experience several side effects, including grogginess,
lethargy, and an inability to function normally. Am. Compl.
¶ 13. On August 4, 2017, he wrote a request to the Nurse
Jane Doe 1 in the medical unit at BCC for his medications to
be discontinued. Id. at ¶¶ 14-15. Although
he had intended on receiving other medications for his
chronic pain, Doe 1 “mistakenly” discontinued all
of his medications. Id. at ¶¶ 15-16.
August 17, the plaintiff wrote another request to have his
blood pressure medication restored and to be evaluated by a
physician for his chronic neuropathic pain in his arm. Am.
Compl. ¶ 17. Dr. Blumberg received the request and
reordered the blood pressure medication. Id. at
¶ 18. However, the plaintiff was never again evaluated
by the medical unit at BCC. Id. at ¶ 19. He
alleges that Blumberg “did not exercise reasonable
care” in addressing his chronic medical condition.
Id. at ¶ 21. Both Blumberg and Doe 1 failed to
place the plaintiff on “medical hold” until his
health needs were addressed, which is required by the DOC
Administrative Directives. Id. at ¶¶
September 19, 2017, the plaintiff was transferred to
MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution
(“MWCI”) for classification assessment. Am.
Compl. ¶ 25. In preparing his transfer summary, Doe 1
failed to record the plaintiff's medical history or need
for follow-up care. Id. at ¶ 26. Upon his
arrival at MWCI, the plaintiff underwent another health
screening. Id. at ¶¶ 28-29. He was
evaluated by Nurse Chris Doe on September 21. Id. at
¶ 30. The plaintiff reported to Chris Doe that he
suffered from chronic neuropathic pain in his arm from a dog
bite and requested to be placed on the list to see a
physician, but Chris Doe said to him, “I see nothing
about dog bites in your file.” Id. at ¶
32. The plaintiff, however, has visible puncture wounds and
scars on his right arm. Id. at ¶¶ 33-34.
After conducting a cursory observation of the plaintiff's
body, Chris Doe noted in a report that the plaintiff had
“faint small scars” and “no documentation
of [a] dog bite in [his] chart.” Id. at
¶¶ 35-39. Plaintiff alleges that Chris Doe failed
to conduct a comprehensive physical examination of him and
improperly relied on Nurse Doe 1's transfer summary from
BCC. Id. at ¶¶ 40-41.
plaintiff explained in detail his medical history to Chris
Doe, including that he had been in pain since he had to
discontinue his medications at BCC. Am. Compl. ¶¶
42-45. However, Chris Doe improperly documented his medical
history and failed to conduct a thorough physical examination
or place the plaintiff on the list to see a doctor.
Id. at ¶¶ 47, 49. He gave the plaintiff a
bottle of Motrin tablets for his chronic pain and sent him