United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Asheville Division
TERRANCE L. JAMES-BEY, Plaintiff,
N.C. DEPT. OF PUBLIC SAFETY, et al., Defendants.
D. WHITNEY CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
MATTER is before the Court on initial review of
Plaintiff's Amended Complaint. [Doc. 22]; see 28
U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). Plaintiff has been granted in forma
pauperis status. [Doc. 12].
Plaintiff Terrance L. James-Bey, a North Carolina inmate at
Marion Correctional Institution (MCI), filed this action on
January 22, 2019, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, naming
thirteen Defendants. [Doc. 1]. In Plaintiff's original
Complaint, Plaintiff, who identifies himself as a “free
born Moor, ” alleged that Defendants are
“illegally and unlawfully detaining” his
“natural person as a ‘Black Political Hostage,
'” that he has been assigned to Marion's
Rehabilitative Diversion Unit (RDU) as an act of religious
persecution, and that Marion officials have confiscated both
his personal property (including religious property) and
legal papers in retaliation for Plaintiff's complaints
against Defendants related to their alleged mistreatment of
him based on his religion. [Id. at 3]. Plaintiff,
however, did not allege any particular conduct by any of the
thirteen Defendants he named in his original Complaint.
[See id.]. On initial review of Plaintiff's
original Complaint, the Court found that it suffered from
numerous deficiencies. The Court instructed the Plaintiff
regarding the nature of these deficiencies including, among
other things that:
Plaintiff is placed on notice that he may not bring unrelated
claims against unrelated parties in a single action.
See Fed.R.Civ.P. 18(a), 20(a)(2); George v.
Smith, 507 F.3d 605, 607 (7th Cir. 2007) (noting that
“[u]nrelated claims against different defendants belong
in different suits, ” so as to prevent prisoners from
dodging the fee payment or three-strikes provisions in the
Prison Litigation Reform Act). Plaintiff may only bring a
claim against multiple defendants as long as (1) the claim
arises out of the same transaction or occurrence, or series
of transactions and occurrences; and (2) there are common
questions of law or fact. Fed.R.Civ.P. 20(a)(2).
Court also instructed the Plaintiff that, to the extent
Plaintiff had named individuals as defendants solely
based on their supervisory positions, these defendants are
subject to dismissal. See Monell v. Dep't of Soc.
Servs., 436 U.S. 658, 694 (1978) (stating that under
§ 1983, liability is personal in nature, and the
doctrine of respondeat superior does not apply). [Doc. 18 at
3]. The Court further instructed that the Plaintiff must
allege how each individual Defendant
personally participated in the alleged violations of
constitutional rights. [Doc. 18 at 3].
Court allowed the Plaintiff 30 days to correct the
deficiencies and to file an amended complaint in accordance
with the Court's Order. [Doc. 18]. The Plaintiff timely
filed an Amended Complaint. [Doc. 22].
Amended Complaint brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983,
Plaintiff claims violations of “Article 6, Sec. 2, U.S.
Const.; U.N. Rights of Indigenous Peoples; and, First,
Fourth, Ninth and Tenth Bill of Rights.” [Doc. 22 at
3]. He names the following individuals as Defendants,
both in their individual and official capacities: (1) FNU
Corpening, identified as the Superintendent/Warden at MCI;
(2) FNU Hergenmother, identified as a sergeant officer at
MCI; (3) FNU Neal, identified as correctional officer at MCI;
(4) Robert T. Barker, identified as a disciplinary hearing
officer at MCI; (5) Kimberly Grande, identified as the
Executive Director of the Grievance Resolution Board for
NCDPS; (6) Kenneth Lassiter, identified as the Director of
Prisons; (7) Monica Bond, identified as Chief Disciplinary
Hearing Officer; (8) Patricia McEntire, identified as Unit
Manager of D-Unit and MCI; (9) FNU Nichols, identified as
sergeant officer at MCI; (10) Thomas Hamilton, identified as
Unit Manager of E-Unit at MCI; (11) Angela Dellaripa,
identified as a grievance examiner for NCDPS; (12) Faustina
Brown, identified as a grievance manager for NCDPS; and (13)
Wakenda Greene, identified as a grievance manager for NCDPS.
claims are made without reference to any particular alleged
Constitutional violation. Plaintiff's claims generally
relate to the consequences and incidents of Plaintiff's
Security Risk Group (SRG) classification and placement in the
RDU program at MCI, particularly in relation to his
self-proclaimed membership in the Moorish Science Temple.
In violation of Article 6, Section 2 of the U.S.
Constitution; the U.N. Declaration On the Rights of
Indigenous People; and the 1st, 4th, 9th and 10th Bill of
Rights, along with the Aid and Assistance of Judge Frank D.
Whitney, the following Defendants have continued in a
campaign of provocation, Harassment and Religious Persecution
because of my National Origins, Race and Faith in the Moorish
Science Temple, while using the so-called RDU Program as a
cover for their criminal and liable conduct.
[Doc. 22 at 6]. Plaintiff then asserts a laundry list of
claims. [See id. at 6-10]. These include claims that
(1) Defendants Hergenmother and Grande confiscated two large
manila envelopes of Plaintiff's legal and religious
materials; (2) Defendants Barker, Bond, and Lassiter
“denied evidence and witness statements” during
the DHO process (related to the seized envelopes) and found
the Plaintiff guilty based solely on the statements of
reporting officers; (3) Defendants Corpening, Lassiter, and
McEntire fabricated excuses to cancel “all”
Moorish Science services and ordered staff to persecute the
Plaintiff by fabricating offenses against him; (4) Defendants
Hamilton and Corpening subjected the Plaintiff to arbitrary
punishment, holding him in long-term confinement without
notice or review and arbitrarily labeling the Plaintiff a
“non-participant in RDU;” (5) Defendant Neal
confiscated all of Plaintiff's religious materials on
February 11, 2019 and Defendants Barker, Bond, and Lassiter
“supported and encouraged this abuse of
authority;” (6) Defendants Hamilton and Corpening
intercepted and withheld packages mailed to the Plaintiff as
a result of his RDU non-participant status; (7) Defendants
Nichols, Hamilton, and Corpening “tampered with
outgoing mail;” (8) Defendant Nichols has targeted
outgoing mail addressed with certain Moorish American
identifiers and had sanctions imposed against Plaintiff for
“engaging the UCC process” under “gang
participation;” (9) Defendants Corpening, Hamilton, and
McEntire provided Defendant Nichols and other staff members
unmonitored access to prisoner mail, allowing Defendant
Nichols to retrieve the Plaintiff's letters without
justification and to harass the Plaintiff without
justification; and (10) Defendants Lassiter, Grande,
Dellaripa, Brown, and Greene conspired and colluded with
respect to “all of the above detailed acts, they all
being notified directly or through the Grievance
Process.” [Doc. 22 at 6-9].
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Court must review the Complaint to determine whether it is
subject to dismissal on the grounds that it is
“frivolous or malicious [or] fails to state a claim on
which relief may be granted.” 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2). Furthermore, § 1915A requires an initial
review of a “complaint in a civil action in which a
prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity or officer
or employee of a governmental entity, ” and the court
must identify cognizable claims or dismiss the complaint, or
any portion of the complaint, if the complaint is frivolous,
malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be
granted; or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is
immune from such relief.
frivolity review, this Court must determine whether the
Complaint raises an indisputably meritless legal theory or is
founded upon clearly baseless factual contentions, such as
fantastic or delusional scenarios. Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 327-28 (1989). Furthermore, a
pro se complaint must be construed liberally. Haines v.
Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972). However, the liberal
construction requirement will not permit a district court to
ignore a clear failure to allege facts in his ...