United States District Court, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Division
Y. PEARSON, JUDGE.
MEMORANDUM OF OPINION AND ORDER [RESOLVING ECF NO.
Y. Pearson, United States District Judge.
a pro se action filed by Plaintiff Ralph Arnold, an
inmate at the Ohio State Penitentiary (“OSP”),
concerning his disciplinary confinement at OSP.
initiated this 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action on
February 11, 2019. On March 22, 2019, he filed a Motion to
File an Amended Complaint “to correct
deficiencies” in his original pleading. ECF No.
3. The Amended Complaint names OSP Warden Richard Bowen,
Deputy Warden Davis, Rules Infraction Board
(“RIB”) Chairperson Condie Bright, and Assistant
Warden Thomas Horton as Defendants. Plaintiff's Motion to
File the Amended Complaint (ECF No. 3) is granted,
and for the reasons stated below, his action is dismissed.
following background is derived from the Plaintiff's
original Complaint (ECF No. 1) and Amended Complaint
(ECF No. 3-1). Plaintiff is a Level E inmate,
OSP's most restrictive security classification reserved
for inmates who constitute the greatest threat to the safety
and security of the community. ECF No. 3-1 at PageID#:
31-32, 38. He has been placed in “T.P.U., ”
or “the hole, ” on multiple occasions in
connection with encounters he has had with Corrections
Officers during his confinement at OSP. ECF. No. 1 at
case, Plaintiff alleges that on December 23, 2018, after
being “let out of the ‘hole' for the final
time, ” he “devised a plan to act as if [he]
would stab said COs, ” contending he “knew this
was the only way to get out of the block with the COs.”
Id. at PageID#: 4. As a result of this conduct,
Plaintiff was not transferred but disciplined. He was placed
in “RND in the basement of the prison, ” and
“per Deputy Warden Davis's orders, ” placed
in a cell where the lights stayed on all day, and he was not
allowed shoes, hygiene products, access to mail, kites, or
other privileges. Id. Several days later, on
December 26, 2018, Warden Bowen personally served Plaintiff
with “Conditions of Confinement” paperwork under
Policy 55-SPC-02, setting forth Restrictive Housing
conditions to which he was subjected, subject to monthly
review. Id. at PageID#: 4-5; ECF No. 3-1 at
PageID#: 32, 36. And on December 31, 2018, after a
hearing, the RIB found him guilty of multiple Rule violations
in connection with his conduct and imposed discipline.
Id. at PageID#: 48. The Disposition of the RIB,
signed by RIB Chair Bright, states that the Plaintiff refused
to be seen at the RIB hearing concerning the charges against
him, and that video evidence clearly showed that he attempted
to stab two officers with a weapon, refused to drop the
weapon when commanded to do so, and issued threats to the
staff. For this conduct, the RIB sanctioned Plaintiff with
“28 days T.P.U.” with credit for time served and
30 and 90 days of other privilege restrictions. Id.
Defendant Horton affirmed the RIB's decision on appeal.
Id. at PageID#: 53.
compensation and to be transferred to another prison,
Plaintiff purports to allege violations of his rights under
the Fourth, Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments, as well
as retaliation in violation of the First Amendment. He
contends the discipline imposed on him by the RIB and the
conditions of confinement ordered by Warden Bowen contradict
prison policies and subject him to cruel and unusual
punishment and “double jeopardy.” Id. at
PageID#: 33. Plaintiff also protests that Davis ordered
security measures against him that “defy logic.”
Id. He complains that, from December 23, 2018, to
February 1, 2019, Davis ordered that Plaintiff's cell be
searched four days a week, and that, beginning on February 1,
2019, Davis ordered that he be subjected to four-days-a-week
strip searches. Plaintiff contends Davis ordered the strip
searches in retaliation for this lawsuit. Id.
Standard of Review
pro se pleadings are liberally construed,
Williams v. Curtin, 631 F.3d 380, 383 (6th Cir.
2011), the “lenient treatment generally accorded to
pro se litigants has limits.” Pilgrim v.
Littlefield, 92 F.3d 413, 416 (6th Cir. 1996). Federal
district courts are expressly required, under 28 U.S.C.
§§ 1915(e)(2)(B) and 1915A, to screen
and dismiss before service any in forma pauperis
civil action, and any complaint in which a prisoner seeks
redress from governmental officers and employees, that the
court determines is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a
claim on which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary
relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. To
survive a dismissal for failure to state a claim, a pro
se “‘complaint must contain sufficient
factual matter, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief
that is plausible on its face.'” Hill v.
Lappin, 630 F.3d 468, 470-71 (6th Cir. 2010) (holding
that the dismissal standard articulated in Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009) and Bell Atlantic Corp.
v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544 (2007) governs dismissals under
§§ 1915(e)(2)(B) and 1915A).
“A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff
pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the
reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the
misconduct alleged.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678.
review, the Court concludes that this action must be
dismissed because Plaintiff's allegations are
insufficient to demonstrate any plausible constitutional
Fourteenth Amendment Claim
has alleged no plausible due process claim under the
Fourteenth Amendment. “Prisoners have narrower liberty
interests than other citizens as lawful incarceration brings
about the necessary withdrawal or limitation of many
privileges and rights.” Grinter v. Knight, 532
F.3d 567, 573 (6th Cir. 2008) (quoting Sandin v.
Conner,515 U.S. 472, 485 (1995) (internal quotation
marks omitted)). And “the Constitution itself does not
give rise to a liberty interest in avoiding transfer to more
adverse conditions of confinement.” Wilkinson v.
Austin,545 U.S. 209, 221 (2005); see also
Sandin, 515 U.S. ...