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Johnson v. Camden County Correctional Facility

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

October 22, 2017

KASSIME JOHNSON, Plaintiff,
v.
CAMDEN COUNTY CORRECTIONAL FACILITY; WARDEN D. OWENS, Defendants.

          Kassime Johnson, Plaintiff Pro Se

          OPINION

          JEROME B. SIMANDLE U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff Kassime Johnson seeks to bring a civil rights complaint pursuant to the 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Camden County Correctional Facility (“CCCF”) and Warden D. Owens (“Warden”) for allegedly unconstitutional conditions of confinement. Complaint, Docket Entry 1.

         At this time, the Court must review the complaint to determine whether it should be dismissed as frivolous or malicious, for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or because it seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. For the reasons set forth below, the Court concludes that the complaint will proceed in part.

         II. BACKGROUND

         The following factual allegations are taken from the complaint and are accepted for purposes of this screening only. The Court has made no findings as to the truth of Plaintiff's allegations.

         Plaintiff alleges he endured unconstitutional conditions of confinement in CCCF as he was confined in an overcrowded, unsanitary facility. Complaint § III. His complaint states: “The Plaintiff Kassime Johnson is a victim of gun violence and has sustained serious injuries from being shot and on or about 9/2002 and April 2016, the Plaintiff was arrested by Camden City Police and was transported to the CCCF. While being housed in the CCCF the plaintiff was given a thin mattress, (2) sheets and blanket and was forced to sleep on the floor of a two man cell, housed with (4) inmates in overcrowded cell. The injuries of the plaintiff made sleeping on the floor, on the thin mattress very painful and plaintiff should have been housed on medical tier but due to overcrowding this was impossible and plaintiff had to sleep on the floor and was denied medical attention. Plaintiff brings constitutional challenges to the conditions of the Jail/ confinement at CCCF. The plaintiff alleges numerous constitutional violations due to inadequate jail conditions that violate plaintiff's eighth and fourteenth amendment rights which are listed as follows: a) due to overcrowding plaintiff who should have been on medical unit due to injuries causing severe pain was forced to sleep on fifthly floor of overcrowded cell and slept near toilet; b) plaintiff witnessed numerous fights due to inmates (including plaintiff) was denied of basic essentials such as toilet paper, cleaning supplies to clean overcrowded jail cell and when an inmate is urinated on from sleeping on floor near toilet fights ensued; and c) plaintiff had to take meals on dirty trays; d) plaintiff was forced to eat spoiled food on several occasions; e) plaintiff broke out with rashes from having to shower using dirty showers with fungus in them which were rarely cleaned properly due to lack of proper supplies needed to clean showers; f) plaintiff was denied of the right to send the blankets to the laundry service to be cleaned in under to keep up hygenes [sic]; g) plaintiff was denied of medical attention and was in a lot of pain due to gunshot injuries which were not treated as plaintiff slept on the floor. The Defendants CCCF and Warden Owens did not do anything to prevent these conditions of overcrowding, medical attention, cleaning supplies and the conditions of the kitchen where food was stored and prepared. There is an ongoing rodent problems as well as insect problems.” Id.

         Plaintiff states this occurred in approximately September 2002 and April 2016. Id. With respect to the requested relief, Plaintiff seeks monetary compensation. Id. § V.

         III. STANDARD OF REVIEW

         A. Standards for a Sua Sponte Dismissal

         Section 1915(e)(2) requires a court to review complaints prior to service in cases in which a plaintiff is proceeding in forma pauperis. The Court must sua sponte dismiss any claim that is frivolous, is malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. This action is subject to sua sponte screening for dismissal under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B) because Plaintiff is proceeding in forma pauperis.

         To survive sua sponte screening for failure to state a claim, the complaint must allege “sufficient factual matter” to show that the claim is facially plausible. Fowler v. UPMS Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210 (3d Cir. 2009) (citation omitted). “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.” Fair Wind Sailing, Inc. v. Dempster, 764 F.3d 303, 308 n.3 (3d Cir. 2014) (quoting Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678). “[A] pleading that offers ‘labels or conclusions' or ‘a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007)).

         B. ...


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