United States District Court, D. Connecticut
CHARLES C. WILLIAMS, Plaintiff,
HARTFORD STATE'S ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, et al., Defendants.
INITIAL REVIEW ORDER
A. Dooley United States District Judge.
October 12, 2018, the plaintiff, Charles C. Williams, an
inmate currently confined at the Corrigan-Radgowski
Correctional Center in Uncasville, Connecticut, brought this
civil action pro se under 42 U.S.C.
§§§ 1983, 1985, and 1986 against the Hartford
State's Attorney's Office, the New Britain
State's Attorney's Office, the city of Hartford, the
Bail Commissioner's Offices in Hartford, and New Britain,
and several members of the State's Attorney's Office,
the Bail Commissioner's Office, and the Hartford Police
Department. Compl. (Doc. No. 1). He claims that the
defendants violated his rights under the United States
Constitution and various state and federal statutes by filing
false sexual assault charges against him, withholding
exculpatory evidence, retaliating against him, and denying
him access to the courts. Each of his claims arise out of his
prosecution by the state in 2013 and 2014. On October 19,
2018, Magistrate Judge William I. Garfinkel granted the
plaintiff's motion to proceed in forma pauperis.
See Order No. 7. For the reasons set forth below,
the complaint is dismissed.
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
America, 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).
plaintiff previously sued many of the same defendants in
another civil action in this Court. See Williams v.
Hartford Police Dept., No. 3:15-CV-933 (AWT). This court
takes judicial notice of the file in that matter and notes
that it has reviewed the complaint in that matter. Although
the present case includes more defendants and additional
claims, it is based on the same set of facts and events as
his previous action. In both cases, the plaintiff alleged
that the defendants arrested and prosecuted him for sexual
assault based on information they knew to be false out of
retaliation and in an effort to cause him emotional distress.
The Court, Thompson, J., dismissed his previous
action with prejudice after concluding that the plaintiff had
attempted to defraud the Court by deliberately falsifying an
exhibit and submitting sworn verifications in support of the
false exhibit. See id., Order No. 456. The plaintiff
has since appealed Judge Thompson's decision, and that
appeal is now pending in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.
Williams v. Hartford Police Dept., No. 18-2465 (2d
plaintiff now seeks to relitigate the same claims in a new
civil action. This, he cannot do. The doctrine of res
judicata, ‘provides that “a final judgment
on the merits of an action precludes the parties or their
privies from relitigating issues that were or could
have been raised in that action.”'”
(emphasis added.) Faraday v. Blanchette, 596
F.Supp.2d 508, 514 (D. Conn. 2009) (quoting Burgos v.
Hopkins, 14 F.3d 787, 789 (2d Cir. 1994)).
“Whether a claim that was not raised in the previous
action could have been raised therein depends in part on
whether the facts essential to support the second were
present in the first.” Coleman v. Blanchette,
No. 3:11-CV-1632 (WIG), 2012 WL 3822022, at *5 (D. Conn. Sep.
4, 2012) (quoting Marvel Characters, Inc. v. Simon,
310 F.3d 280, 287 (2d Cir. 2002)). All of the claims in the
instant case either were raised, or could have been raised,
in the previous action. Both cases stem from the
plaintiff's arrest and prosecution for sexual assault
charges in 2013 and 2014.
first case was dismissed with prejudice because the plaintiff
elected to submit falsified evidence in support of his
constitutional claims. He now seeks a second opportunity to
relitigate those same claims and additional claims which he
could have asserted in the previous action. The
plaintiff's claims are barred by the doctrine of
case is DISMISSED with prejudice. The clerk is directed to
enter judgment in favor of the defendants and close this
 The court further notes that even if
the initial action remained pending in this Court, the
instant case would be subject to dismissal under the prior
pending action doctrine. “The prior pending action
doctrine states that, where two lawsuits in the same court
include the same claims, ‘the first suit [filed] should
have priority.'” Webb v. Arnone, No.
3:17-CV-1624 (SRU), 2018 WL 3651333, at *4 (D. Conn. Aug. 1,
2018) (quoting Adam v. Jacobs, 950 F.2d 89, 92 (2d
Cir. 1991)). “Where two pending actions address the
same legal claims and conduct, the [C]ourt may dismiss the
second action as long as the controlling issues in the
dismissed action will be determined in the other
lawsuit.” Torrez v. Department of Correction,
No. 3:17-CV-1223 (SRU), 2017 WL 3841681, at *3 (D. Conn.
Sept. 1, 2017) (quoting Edwards v. North American Power
and Gas, LLC, No. 3:14-CV-1714 (VAB), 2016 WL 3093356,
at *3 (D. Conn. Jun. 1, 2016)). The plaintiff's initial
action, Williams, No. 3:15-CV-933, contained the
same constitutional challenges to his state criminal
proceedings as the ...