Henson v. Graham et al
MEMORANDUM. Signed by Judge James K. Bredar on 3/7/2017. (c/m 3/7/17 bas, Deputy Clerk)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MARYLAND
JAMES A. HENSON, JR.,
RICHARD J. GRAHAM, JR.,
BRADLEY O. BUTLER,
RONALD SHANE WEBER,
Civil Action No. JKB-16-3969
The above-entitled Complaint was filed pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 on December 12,
2016. Plaintiff seeks leave to proceed in forma pauperis, which shall be granted. For the reasons
set forth below, the Complaint must be dismissed.
Plaintiff, who is incarcerated at Western Correctional Institution in Cumberland,
Maryland, asserts that he is the subject of a “hit” placed upon him by various prison gangs and
that unnamed correctional staff have failed to protect him from violent inmates. ECF 1, p. 4. He
alleges a general conspiracy among racist staff and inmates to cause him harm. The only
specific information Plaintiff provides is that he was stabbed by fellow inmate Roy Jenkins in
October of 2011. Id.
Plaintiff is well known to the Court. He has filed numerous complaints alleging a vast
conspiracy to cause him harm.
The allegations, repeatedly raised by Henson, have been
repeatedly reviewed and examined by this Court and found to be without merit based upon
declarations submitted by prison staff and investigators within the Division of Correction
(“DOC”) Internal Investigative Unit (“IIU”) and Administrative Remedy Procedure (“ARP”)
Henson’s mental health evaluations show him to be suffering from paranoid and
Plaintiff previously filed suit regarding a 2011 assault as well as allegations concerning
Correctional Officers Wilson, Merling, Lark, and Weber assigning him to a cell with Inmate
Jenkins, an alleged “professed racist.” See Henson v. Likin, Civil Action No. RWT-11-2719 (D.
Md.). Defendants were granted summary judgment in that case.
Plaintiff previously filed suit against CO II Jesse Lambert, CO II Nicholas Soltas, CO II
Steven Miller, CO II Randolph Bennett, CO II Christopher Ortt, CO II Joshua Tart, and CO II
Shawn Murray, alleging they assigned him to cells with gang members and advised gang
members on the unit that Plaintiff was a rapist. He reiterated his claim regarding the assault by
Jenkins and sought protective custody and a federal investigation. See Henson v. Lambert, Civil
Action No. RWT-12-3271. Defendants were granted summary judgment in that case.
Plaintiff previously filed suit against Lt. Dale Smith, Case Worker Gainer, Caseworker
Sindy, Lt. Miller, Sgt. Iser, Sgt. Guilliam, and Sgt. Tyndale, again alleging overall failure to
protect, lack of a policy to address risks to Plaintiff’s health and safety, and an overarching
conspiracy; this suit was likewise dismissed. See Henson v. Smith, Civil Action No. RWT-132266 (D. Md.).
Plaintiff previously sued former Warden Frank B. Bishop, Jr., Lt. William E. Miller,
Major Robert M. Friend, Lt. Bradley Wilt, Sergeant Walter Iser, CO II Jesse L. Lambert, CO II
Christopher Anderson, CO II Nicolas Soltas, and CO II Steven Miller, alleging that he was the
See Henson v. Likin, Civil Action No. RWT-11-2719 (D. Md.), Henson v. Miller, Civil Action No. RWT-12-763
(D. Md.) Henson v. Lambert, Civil Action No. RWT-12-3271 (D. Md.), Henson v. Smith, Civil Action No. RWT13-2266 (D. Md.); Henson v. Weber, RWT-14-340 (D. Md.), and Henson v. Graham, RDB-14-2058 (D. Md.). In
those cases, the Court concluded that Henson’s claims had been subject to investigation and found to be without
merit and that Henson had otherwise failed to provide any facts in support of his bald-faced conspiracy allegations.
target of a campaign of murder carried out by correctional staff and specifying an assault on
June 20, 2014. See Henson v. Bishop, Civil Action No. RDB-14-2131 (D. Md.). Defendants
were granted summary judgment in that case.
Defendants Lt. Bradley Wilt, Lt. Thomas Sires, Sgt. Walter Iser, Sgt. Brian Iames, Sgt.
Janet Puffenbarger, CO II Nicholas Soltas, CO II Cody Gilpin, CO II Steven Miller, CO II
Phillip Deist, CO II David Beachy, CO II Dustin Gursky, and CO II Jason Frantz were granted
summary judgment regarding Plaintiff’s claim that Defendants violated his constitutional rights
by subjecting him to excessive force, failing to protect him from harm, and failing to provide
medical treatment. He also claimed that Defendants conspired to have him murdered and placed
his life in danger by housing him with dangerous inmates. See Henson v. Soltas, Civil Action
No. RDB-14-3676 (D. Md.).
Summary judgment was granted for Defendants in Henson v. Puffenbarger, et al., Civil
Action No. RDB-15-3022, where Plaintiff accused Defendants Sgt. Janet Puffenbarger, C.O. II
Timothy Marchinke, C.O. II Dean Rounds, Jr., and C.O. II Cody Gilpin of verbally threatening
him with the use of racial epithets and also of using excessive force against him in August and
September of 2015.
Summary judgment was entered for Defendants Wexford Health Sources, Inc., and Lt.
Sawyer in regard to Plaintiff’s claim that Defendants denied him health care and continued to use
force to place him in cells with known violent criminals in order to cause him harm in retaliation
for his filing grievances and lawsuits. Henson v. Wexford, et al., Civil Action No. RDB-16-53
Other complaints raising bald conspiracy claims were dismissed sua sponte by the Court.
See Henson v. Wilt, et al., Civil Action No. RDB-14-3724 (D. Md.); Henson v. Friend et al.,
Civil Action No. RDB-14-3825 (D. Md.), and Henson v. Miller et al., Civil Action No. RDB-1528 (D. Md.). Plaintiff’s claims of a far reaching conspiracy have been investigated and found
unsubstantiated, resulting in the dismissal of the claims both administratively and judicially. See
e.g. Henson v. Likin, Civil Action No. RWT-11-2719 (D. Md.); Henson v. Miller, Civil Action
No. RWT-12-763 (D. Md.); Henson v. Lambert, Civil Action No. RWT-12-3271 (D. Md.);
Henson v. Smith, et al., Civil Action No. RWT-13-2266 (D.Md.); Henson v. Bishop, Civil Action
No. RDB-14-2131 (D. Md.) (dismissing for failure to exhaust administrative remedies but noting
affidavits of all correctional staff that they had not submitted false incident reports, encouraged
the submission of falsified medical reports, or instructed anyone to house Plaintiff with violent,
dangerous gang members.)
Where there has been a final judgment on the merits in a prior suit, an identity of the
cause of action in both the earlier and the later suit, and an identity of parties or their privies in
the two suits, res judicata is established. See Pension Ben. Guar. Corp. v. Beverley, 404 F.3d
243, 248 (4th Cir. 2005). The doctrine of res judicata precludes the assertion of a claim after a
judgment on the merits in a prior suit by parties on the same cause of action. See Meekins v.
United Transp. Union, 946 F.2d 1054, 1057 (4th Cir. 1991). In addition, “’[n]ot only does res
judicata bar claims that were raised and fully litigated, it prevents litigation of all grounds for, or
defenses to, recovery that were previously available to the parties, regardless of whether they
were asserted or determined in the prior proceeding.’” Id. (quoting Peugeot Motors of America,
Inc. v. Eastern Auto Distributors, Inc., 892 F.2d 355, 359 (4th Cir. 1989)). Plaintiff’s claims
regarding the 2011 assault as well as his claims of a vast conspiracy to cause him harm have
previously been investigated, found unsubstantiated, fully litigated, and dismissed. He shall not
be permitted to proceed as to those claims again, and his Complaint shall therefore be dismissed.
The complaint shall be dismissed under the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e). 2 See
Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989); see also Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 32
(1992); Cochran v. Morris, 73 F.3d 1310, 1315 (4th Cir. 1996); Nasim v. Warden, 64 F.3d 951,
954-55 (4th Cir. 1995). Plaintiff is reminded that under 28 U.S.C. ' 1915(g) he will not be
granted in forma pauperis status if he has Aon 3 or more prior occasions, while incarcerated or
detained in any facility, brought an action or appeal in a court of the United States that was
dismissed on the grounds that it is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief
may be granted, unless the prisoner is under imminent danger of serious physical injury.@
A separate order follows.
March 7, 2017
James K. Bredar
United States District Judge
In light of the dismissal, Plaintiff’s Motion to Appoint Counsel (ECF 4) shall be denied.
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