Hill v. Khodenko et al
DECISION AND ORDER: The New York State Attorney General's Office is hereby requested to produce the information specified above, to the extent that it can, regarding the identity of the defendant within thirty (30) days of the filing date of t his Decision and Order. The information should be sent to the Clerk of the Court for the Northern District of New York along with a copy of this Decision and Order, as well as to plaintiff at his address of record. Once this information is provided, the Clerk shall return this file to the Court for further review. Signed by Magistrate Judge Therese Wiley Dancks on 6/16/17. (served on plaintiff by regular mail; served on NYS AG's office with a copy of the complaint and the March Order by regular mail) (alh, )
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
NURSE KHODENKO, et. al.,
Plaintiff, pro se
Attica Correctional Facility
Attica, NY 14011
THÉRÈSE WILEY DANCKS
United States Magistrate Judge
DECISION AND ORDER
Plaintiff Desean Hill commenced this pro se action by filing a civil rights complaint
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 ("Section 1983") together with a motion for leave to proceed in
forma pauperis. Dkt. No. 1 ("Compl."); Dkt. No. 5 ("IFP Application"). The complaint
asserted claims arising, if at all, while plaintiff was confined in Shawangunk Correctional
Facility ("Shawangunk C.F."). See generally Compl. By Decision and Order of United States
District Judge Brenda K. Sannes filed March 23, 2017, plaintiff's IFP Application was granted
but following review of the complaint in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B) and 28
U.S.C. § 1915A(b), several claims and defendants were dismissed and defendant Nurse
Khodenko ("Khodenko") was directed to respond to the Fourteenth Am endment claim that
survived sua sponte review. Dkt. No. 8 (the "March Order").
On March 23, 2017, the Clerk of the Court issued a summons to Nurse Khodenko.
Dkt. No. 9. On March 29, 2017, the summons was returned with a letter from the New York
State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision ("DOCCS") indicating that
Khodenko was not an employee at Shawangunk C.F. Dkt. No. 10. On May 3, 2017, the
Clerk of the Court forwarded a letter to Deputy Counsel for DOCCS requesting assistance
with service of process. Dkt. No. 11. Counsel did not respond to the Clerk's
Although plaintiff's Fourteenth Amendment claim against Khodenko survived sua
sponte review, plaintiff was not able to provide the defendant's first name. To complicate
matters, plaintiff is no longer incarcerated at Shawangunk C.F. In light of the foregoing, the
Clerk of Court shall send a copy of the complaint, the March Order, and this Decision and
Order to the New York State Attorney General's Office. Pursuant to Valentin v. Dinkins, 121
F.3d 72 (2d. Cir. 1997) (per curiam), the Court requests that the New York State Attorney
General's Office attempt to ascertain the full name of the defendant.1 The Attorney General's
Office is also requested, to the extent that it is able to identify the defendant, to provide the
address where the defendant can currently be served. The Attorney General's Office need
not undertake to defend or indemnify these individuals at this juncture. This order merely
provides a means by which plaintiff may name and properly serve the defendant as
instructed by the Second Circuit in Valentin.
In Valentin, 121 F.3d at 75-75, the Second Circuit held that district courts must assist pro se
incarcerated litigants with their inquiry into the identities of unknown defendants.
WHEREFORE, it is hereby
The New York State Attorney General's Office is hereby requested to produce the
information specified above, to the extent that it can, regarding the identity of the defendant
within thirty (30) days of the filing date of this Decision and Order. The information should be
sent to the Clerk of the Court for the Northern District of New York along with a copy of this
Decision and Order, as well as to plaintiff at his address of record. Once this information is
provided, the Clerk shall return this file to the Court for further review.2
ORDERED that the Clerk serve a copy of this Decision and Order on the parties.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
June 16, 2017
At least three other District Courts in the Second Circuit request the assistance of the New York
State Attorney General in ascertaining the identity of defendants employed by the New York State Department of
Corrections and Community Supervision. See, e.g., Garraway v. Griffin, No. 12-CV-0924, 2013 WL 2105903, at
*4-5 (W.D.N.Y. May 8, 2013); Rushion v. Fuller, No. 13-CV-4277, 2013 WL 5406602, at *5 (E.D.N.Y. Sept. 25,
2013); and Woodward v. Perez, No. 12-CV-8671, 2014 WL 4276416, at *1 n.1 (S.D.N.Y. Aug. 29, 2014).
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