United States District Court, D. Connecticut
JOSE A. JUSINO, Plaintiff,
MONICA RINALDI, et al., Defendants.
RULING AND ORDER
Michael P. Shea, United States District Judge
plaintiff, Jose A. Jusino, is incarcerated at Northern
Correctional Institution (“Northern”). On June 6,
2019, the plaintiff filed an amended complaint. For the
reasons set forth below, the amended complaint will be
dismissed in part.
plaintiff initiated this action by filing a complaint against
fifteen employees of the Department of Correction.
See Compl., ECF No. 1 at 1. He asserted Eighth
Amendment conditions of confinement claims, a Fourteenth
Amendment equal protection claim, and Fourteenth Amendment
due process claims related to his confinement on special
management needs status at Northern and his confinement on
security risk group status in the Walker Building at
MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution
(“Walker”) and Corrigan Correctional Institution
(“Corrigan”). See Id. at 2.
April 15, 2019, after reviewing the complaint under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(b), the court dismissed the Fourteenth Amendment
equal protection claim, the Eighth Amendment claim related to
conditions at Corrigan, and the Fourteenth Amendment due
process claim related to the plaintiff's confinement at
Corrigan. The court dismissed without prejudice the Eighth
Amendment conditions claim related to the plaintiff's
confinement at Walker. See Initial Review Order, ECF
No. 8, at 17-18. The court concluded that Fourteenth
Amendment due process claims relating to the plaintiff's
long-term confinement on special management needs status and
security risk group status without meaningful, periodic
reviews would proceed against defendants Rinaldi, Santiago,
Kocienda, Maiga, Maldenado, Quiros, Rodriguez, Mulligan,
Molden, and Tugie in their individual capacities. See
Id. at 18. The court also permitted the plaintiff to
file an amended complaint to re-assert his Eighth Amendment
conditions claim related to his confinement in the security
risk group program at Walker beginning on July 31, 2018. The
court instructed the plaintiff that if he chose to file an
amended complaint, “he must include facts to show how
each condition or combination of conditions that existed at
Walker deprived him of a basic human need and also describe
how each defendant was involved in, responsible for or aware
of the various conditions at Walker that allegedly deprived
him of a basic human need.” Id.
amended complaint asserts claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983
and re-names Commissioner Scott Semple, Deputy Commissioner
Monica Rinaldi, Director of Security Antonio Santiago,
Administrators Edward Maldenado, Angel Quiros, Nick
Rodriguez, William Mulligan, and David Maiga, and
Correctional Employees Elisabeth Tugie, Jon Aldi, Derrick
Molden, and Thomas Kocienda as defendants and adds
Commissioner Rollin Cook and Correctional Employees Daniel
Papoosha, Craig Burns and Mark Frayne as defendants.
See Am. Compl., ECF No. 27. The plaintiff alleges
that the defendants violated his Fourteenth Amendment rights
during his confinement on special needs management status at
Northern beginning in 2010 and during his confinement on
security risk group status from 2009 to the present.
Standard of Review
court reviews the amended complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(b). Under section 1915A(b), a court must
“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)).
Although courts still have an obligation to interpret
“a pro se complaint liberally, ” the
complaint must include sufficient factual allegations to meet
the standard of facial plausibility. See Harris v.
Mills, 572 F.3d 66, 72 (2d Cir. 2009) (citations
plaintiff states that he has been diagnosed as suffering from
“multiple psychological disabilit[ies] and traits as
well as abnormal brain structure and function.”
See Am. Compl., at 4 ¶ 9. He has been confined
in a restrictive housing unit since 2007. See Id.
2009, the plaintiff received a disciplinary report charging
him with being a member of a security risk group called the
Bloods. See Id. at 5 ¶ 17. The plaintiff
contends that he was never a member of the Bloods gang.
See Id. “[F]or safety reason[s], [the
plaintiff] had to inform DOC that he [was] not a member of
the Bloods, but was associated with the Latin Kings security
risk group.” See Id. at 6 ¶ 18. After
finding the plaintiff guilty of the disciplinary charge of
security risk group affiliation, prison officials designated
the plaintiff as a security risk group member. See
Id. at 5 ¶ 17.
plaintiff has been classified as a security risk group member
for a decade. See Id. at 6 ¶ 20. Under
Connecticut Department of Correction Directive 6.14(9),
prison officials shall review an inmate's designation as
a security risk group member at least every six months to
determine whether an inmate should remain a security risk
group member. See Id. ¶ 19. Prison officials
have never reviewed the plaintiff's status as a security
risk group member. See Id. ¶ 20. For years,
prison officials continued to classify the plaintiff as a
security risk group member because he had not completed the
security risk group phase program but failed to offer him the
opportunity to complete the program. See id.
2010, Department of Correction officials classified the
plaintiff as special needs management status and confined him
at Northern. See Id. at 4 ¶ 11. During his
confinement on special needs management status, prison
officials permitted the plaintiff to: watch television in his
cell, take a shower every day, participate in outdoor
recreation for two hours each day, participate in recreation
in the gym, visit with non-immediate family members, visit
with his mother for an extended period of time, purchase
$75.00 of commissary items and ...