Morrow v. Straughn et al
ORDER denying 40 Plaintiff's Motion to Amend/Correct and denying 40 Plaintiff's Motion for Preliminary Injunction. Signed by Magistrate Judge J. Thomas Ray on 04/09/2014. (kcs)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
PINE BLUFF DIVISION
WILLIAM STRAUGHN, Warden,
Maximum Security Unit, ADC, et al.
In May of 2013, Plaintiff filed this pro se § 1983 action alleging that
Defendants violated his constitutional right to access the courts by: (1) limiting his
access to the prison library; and (2) restricting his possession of legal publications and
materials. Defendants have recently moved for summary judgment on that claim.
Plaintiff now seeks permission to amend his Complaint to add new claims that,
on March 15, 2014, Sergeant Wiley and Captain Jackson wrongfully seized legal
materials, writing supplies, and a religious text from his punitive isolation cell.1 Doc.
40. Plaintiff believes that they did so to retaliate against him for filing this lawsuit.
Sergeant Wiley and Captain Jackson are not Defendants in this lawsuit. The
access to the courts, freedom of religion, and retaliation claims Plaintiff seeks to raise
Plaintiff is currently confined in punitive isolation for an unspecified duration for
committing multiple disciplinary violations. Doc. 47.
against them are factually and legally unrelated to the claims currently pending against
the Defendants named in this lawsuit. Thus, joinder of those new claims and
defendants is improper. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 20 (a)(2) (explaining that claims against
multiple defendants may be joined in one lawsuit only if the claims arise out of the
same occurrence and involve common questions of law and fact). Additionally,
Plaintiff cannot add his new claims because they arose in March of 2014, which was
ten months after he commenced this lawsuit in May of 2013. See Johnson v. Jones,
340 F.3d 624, 627 (8th Cir. 2003) (explaining that a prisoner must complete the
administrative remedy process as to each claim before he files a lawsuit in federal
court). Thus, Plaintiff's Motion to Amend the Complaint is denied.
Plaintiff also seeks a preliminary injunction requiring prison officials to return
his writing supplies and legal materials to his punitive isolation cell so that he can
prepare his Response to Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment. Doc. 40.
However, Plaintiff admits that he can have those materials, as well as books from the
prison library, delivered to his punitive isolation cell if he produces an Order
demonstrating that he has a court imposed deadline to meet. Doc. 40; Doc. 2 (ADC
Admin. Dir. 12-24 § III (A) (5), (8), (9) and (17) (providing that prisoners in punitive
isolation have access to the law library and writing materials if they demonstrate that
they have a court deadline to meet). On this day, the Court has entered a separate
Order giving Plaintiff forty-five days to file his Response to Defendants' Motion for
Summary Judgment. Plaintiff can use that Order to demonstrate that he has a courtimposed deadline to meet.
Additionally, every thirty days Plaintiff is released from punitive isolation for
48 hours. Id., Doc. 47, Exs. 2 & 3. During that relief period, Plaintiff can go to the
prison library, and he has access to his legal materials and writing supplies. Id.
Plaintiff will have at least one 48 hour relief period during the forty five days that he
has been given to file his Response to Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment.
Thus, his request for preliminary injunctive is denied, as moot.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED THAT Plaintiff's Motion to Amend the
Complaint and for Preliminary Injunctive Relief (Doc. 40) is DENIED.
Dated this 9th day of April, 2014.
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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