United States District Court, D. Connecticut
INITIAL REVIEW ORDER PURSUANT TO 28 U.S.C. §
Jeffrey Alker Meyer United States District Judge
Junior Jumpp Holness is a prisoner in the custody of the
Connecticut Department of Correction (“DOC”). He
has filed a complaint pro se and in forma
pauperis under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. After an initial
review, I conclude that the complaint should be served on
some of the named defendants as set forth in the ruling
names eight defendants in his complaint: correctional
officers Savoie, Gilman, and Paul Roy; warden Anthony
Corcella; deputy warden Ronald Cotta; correctional counselor
Oleary; counselor supervisor Doran; and lieutenant Dumas. The
following facts are accepted as true only for purposes of
3, 2019, Savoie made sexual comments to Holness, who filed a
grievance in response. Doc. #1 at 4 (¶ 1). Rather than
investigate the incident, intelligence officers Doran and Roy
began to harass Holness and to issue him false disciplinary
reports. Ibid. (¶ 2).
June 12, 2019, Savoie was still working in Holness's
housing unit. Ibid. (¶ 3). That afternoon,
Savoie and Gilman arrived at an interview room to escort
Holness back to his cell when, instead of removing the chain
attaching his handcuff to the desk and wall, Savoie grabbed
his penis “hard” while Gilman watched smiling.
Id. at 4-5 (¶ 4). When Holness yelled, Gilman
came over the desk and held down Holness's shoulder while
Savoie quickly removed the handcuff. Ibid. In the
hallway, Holness “tr[ied]” to report the incident
to a lieutenant, but Savoie interrupted, chokingly grabbed
him by the collar, and took him to his cell. Id. at
5 (¶ 5). Once there, Savoie punched and
“assaulted” him “in his leg
next day at 1:30 AM, Holness reported the incident to the
Prison Rape Elimination Act hotline. Doc. #1 at 5 (¶ 6).
The state police interviewed Holness about the aforementioned
incidents a short time later. Ibid. (¶ 7).
Later that morning, while touring Holness's housing unit,
Savoie threatened to kill Holness and made comments about
sexual favors. Id. at 5-6 (¶ 8).
while Savoie and Dumas were touring together, Holness told
Dumas that he feared for his safety around Savoie and asked
for his inhaler because he was having difficulty breathing.
Ibid. Savoie told him “you don[']t get
shit[, ] scumbag” and “you can die[, ] you piece
of shit”; neither officer permitted Holness to call the
medical unit for his inhaler. Ibid.
20, 2019, while touring, Savoie told Holness he was going to
“(F)” him. Id. at 6 (¶ 9). Holness
subsequently found a hair and a white substance in his food.
Ibid. He reported this to Oleary, but she said that
there was nothing she could do because she is just the unit
counselor, not a custody officer. Ibid. Later that
day, Holness made a second complaint to the state police.
Ibid. (¶ 10).
had repeatedly complained to warden Corcella and deputy
warden Cotta about these incidents, but neither did anything
to protect him from Savoie. Id. at 7 (¶ 12).
Oleary also had knowledge of the incidents but failed to take
action, as well as denied Holness access to the courts.
Ibid. (¶ 11). In addition, Dumas as the unit
manager, ibid. (¶ 13), and Doran and Roy as
intelligence officers, id. at 8 (¶ 14), knew of
the incidents and did nothing to protect Holness.
result of Savoie grabbing Holness's groin, Holness's
testicle sometimes shifts out of place and causes him pain.
Id. at 8 (¶ 14). Holness has sought physical
and mental health treatment for his injuries. Ibid.
He seeks money damages from the defendants in their
individual capacities, as well as injunctive relief in the
form of changes to DOC policy to protect him and others from
sexual abuse. Ibid.; see also Id. at 1.
to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, the Court must review a
prisoner's civil complaint against a governmental entity
or governmental actors and “identify cognizable claims
or dismiss the compliant, or any portion of the complaint, if
the complaint-(1) is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state
a claim upon which relief may be granted; or (2) seeks
monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such
relief.” If the prisoner is proceeding pro se,
the allegations of the complaint must be read liberally to
raise the strongest arguments that they suggest. See
Tracy v. Freshwater, 623 F.3d 90, 101-02 (2d Cir. 2010).
Supreme Court has set forth a threshold
“plausibility” pleading standard for courts to
evaluate the adequacy of allegations in federal court
complaints. A complaint must allege enough facts-as distinct
from legal conclusions-that give rise to plausible grounds
for relief. See, e.g., Ashcroft v. Iqbal,
556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009); Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). Notwithstanding the
rule of liberal interpretation of a pro se
complaint, a complaint may not survive dismissal if its