Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Bey v. New Jersey Department of Corrections

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

November 5, 2018

HASSAN BEY, Plaintiff,
v.
NEW JERSEY DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, et al., Defendants.

          OPINION

          FREDA L. WOLFSON, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff, Hassan Bey (“Bey”), is a prisoner currently incarcerated at South Woods State Prison in Newark, New Jersey.[1] He is proceeding pro se with a civil rights complaint filed under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. This Court previously granted Bey's application to proceed in forma pauperis. (ECF No. 2.)

         The Court must now review the complaint under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e), 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, and 42 U.S.C. § 1997e 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 suit. For the following reasons, the complaint will be permitted to proceed in part and will be dismissed in part.

         II. BACKGROUND

         The factual allegations of the complaint will be construed as true for the purposes of this opinion. The complaint names as defendants the New Jersey Department of Corrections, Gary M. Lanigan, the former-Commissioner of the Department of Corrections, and SCO E. Hernandez. (Compl., ECF No. 1.)

         Bey alleges that on July 18, 2017, he had a “minor misunderstanding” with SCO Hernandez while Bey was moving his belongings to a new unit within Northern State Prison. (Id. ¶ 6.) Bey claims that as a result of this dispute, SCO Hernandez ordered him to stand against the wall with his hands on his head. (Id.). SCO Hernandez then apparently took Bey to an empty room that is not surveilled by camera. (Id.) Several other officers entered the room and allegedly threatened Bey and SCO Hernandez “forcibly push[ed] [his] head into the cement wall.” (Id.)

         Bey claims that the officers then ordered him to strip “for no reason.” (Id.) Bey alleges that there was no reason for the officers to conduct a strip search because he was not returning from visitation nor suspected of having “paraphernalia” on him. (Id.) Bey asserts he was humiliated by the search and further humiliated by SCO Hernandez who “made [Bey] pull back the foreskin on [his] penis” and threatened to use force if Bey did not do so. (Id.) Following the strip search, Bey claims that SCO Hernandez damaged his television. (Id.)

         After this incident, Bey alleges that he filed a Prison Rape Elimination Act (“PREA”) complaint with medical staff and reported the incident to “high ranking officers, Administration, the Commission, Attorney General, Essex County prosecutors, [and] the investigation unit.” (Id. ¶ 5.) He alleges that he received no response to his complaint for five months following the incident. (Id. ¶ 6.)

         Bey seeks monetary relief from defendants, as well as an injunction ordering the use of body cameras by correctional officers. (Id. ¶ 7.)

         III. LEGAL STANDARD

         Under the Prison Litigation Reform Act, Pub. L. 104-134, §§ 801-810, 110 Stat. 1321-66 to 1321-77 (Apr. 26, 1996) (“PLRA”), a district court must review a prisoner complaint when the prisoner: (1) is proceeding in forma pauperis, see 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B); (2) seeks redress against a governmental employee or entity, see 28 U.S.C. § 1915A; or (3) asserts a claim concerning prison conditions, see 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(c). The PLRA directs district courts to sua sponte dismiss claims that are frivolous or malicious, that fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or that seek monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. See 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2)(B), 1915A(b); 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(c).

         “The legal standard for dismissing a complaint for failure to state a claim pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) is the same as that for dismissing a complaint pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6).” Schreane v. Seana, 506 Fed.Appx. 120, 122 (3d Cir. 2012) (per curiam); see also Mitchell v. Beard, 492 Fed.Appx. 230, 232 (3d Cir. 2012) (per curiam) (discussing 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(c)(1)); Courteau v. United States, 287 Fed.Appx. 159, 162 (3d Cir. 2008) (discussing 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)). That standard is set forth in Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009), and Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544 (2007). To survive the Court's screening for failure to state a claim, the complaint must allege “sufficient factual matter to show that the claim is facially plausible.” Fowler v. UPMC Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210 (3d Cir. 2009). “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; see also Fair Wind Sailing, Inc. v. Dempster, 764 F.3d 303, 308 n.3 (3d Cir. 2014). “A pleading that offers ‘labels and conclusions' or ‘a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do.'” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678 (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555).

         Pro se pleadings must be liberally construed. See Haines v. Kerner,404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972) (per curiam); Glunk v. Noone, 689 Fed.Appx. 137, 139 (3d Cir. 2017) (per curiam). Nevertheless, “pro se litigants still must allege sufficient facts in their complaints to support a ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.