Juwor v. Larson
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER ENTERED: This action is dismissed for failure to state a claim. Signed by U.S. Senior District Judge Sam A. Crow on 03/13/18. Mailed to pro se party Bontey Juwor by regular mail. (smnd)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF KANSAS
CASE NO. 17-3218-SAC
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on Plaintiff’s Response (Doc. 5) to the Court’s
February 9, 2018 Memorandum and Order and Order to Show Cause (“MOSC”) (Doc. 3). The
MOSC ordered Plaintiff to show cause why Plaintiff’s Complaint (Doc. 1) should not be
dismissed for the reasons set forth in the MOSC. Plaintiff has failed to show good cause and his
Complaint is dismissed for failure to state a claim.
Plaintiff alleges that on October 30, 2017, while he was housed at the Shawnee County
Jail in Topeka, Kansas, he asked Correctional Officer Loni Larson why they were on lockdown
every time she was working. Larson replied “not my monkey, not my jail.” Plaintiff states that
he was highly offended by Officer Larson’s racially insensitive comment toward him. Plaintiff
seeks $100,000 in damages.
The Court found in the MOSC that Plaintiff’s claim is subject to dismissal because
Plaintiff has not adequately alleged a federal constitutional violation. “Mere verbal threats or
harassment do not rise to the level of a constitutional violation unless they create ‘terror of
instant and unexpected death.’” Alavarez v. Gonzales, 155 F. App’x 393, 396 (10th Cir. 2005)
(citing Northington v. Jackson, 973 F.2d 1518, 1524 (10th Cir. 1992)); see also McBride v. Deer,
240 F.3d 1287, 1291 n.3 (10th Cir. 2001) (“[A]cts or omissions resulting in an inmate being
subjected to nothing more than threats and verbal taunts do not violate the Eighth
Amendment.”); Ragland v. Romer, 73 F.3d 374 (10th Cir.), cert. denied, 518 U.S. 1025 (1996)
(“Courts have consistently held that acts or omissions resulting in an inmate being subjected to
nothing more than threats and verbal taunts do not violate the Eighth Amendment.”). Plaintiff’s
allegations do not suggest a show of deadly force, thus failing to create “terror of instant and
The Court also found in the MOSC that Plaintiff’s request for compensatory damages is
barred by 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(e), because Plaintiff has failed to allege a physical injury.
Section 1997e(e) provides in pertinent part that “[n]o Federal civil action may be brought by a
prisoner confined in a jail, prison, or other correctional facility, for mental or emotional injury
suffered while in custody without a prior showing of physical injury.” 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(e).
Plaintiff’s response fails to address these deficiencies and merely states that Plaintiff
suffered “emotional stress” due to the “racially insensitive comment.” Accordingly,
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED BY THE COURT that this action is dismissed for
failure to state a claim.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Dated in Topeka, Kansas on this 13th day of March, 2018.
S/ Sam A. Crow
Sam A. Crow
U.S. Senior District Judge
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