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Gorbey v. Bennett

United States District Court, D. Maryland

June 27, 2019

MICHAEL OWLFEATHER GORBEY, Plaintiff,
v.
RICHARD D. BENNETTT, et al., Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          GEORGE L. RUSSELL, III UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         THIS MATTER is before the Court on Plaintiff Michael Owlfeather Gorbey's Complaint (ECF No. 1) and Motion for Leave to Proceed In Forma Pauperis (ECF No. 2). For the reasons set forth below, the Court will dismiss the Complaint because it fails to comply with the requirements of 28 U.S.C. § 1915(g) (2018) and does not pass 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e) (2018)'s screening provisions. The Court will also deny Gorbey's Motion For Leave to Proceed In Forma Pauperis.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Gorbey is a prisoner committed to the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) at the Federal Correctional Institution in Cumberland, Maryland (“FCI-Cumberland”). (Compl. at 1, ECF No. 1). In his Complaint, Gorbey brings seven “grounds” for relief, which the Court construes as claims. Gorbey's first claim asserts that all of the named Defendants have conspired to commit “false imprisonment leading to imminent danger” based on his continued assignment to the segregated housing unit (“SHU”) following a disciplinary hearing. (Id. at 2). Gorbey states that the hearing, which took place on March 20, 2019, did not result in an active sentence for disciplinary segregation, but he was nevertheless kept in segregation. (Id.). Defendant Captain Felix told Gorbey he was being held in the SHU for rescoring of his classification which would add three points to his “custody points.” (Id.). Gorbey alleges that the rescoring was done to “knowingly cause adverse effects to Gorbey's custody points that would otherwise score differently on the compound.” (Id. at 2-3).

         Related to the first claim, Gorbey's second claim is that his transfer to another prison as a result of his segregation confinement and related increase in custody points is unconstitutional. (Id. at 3-4). In this claim, Gorbey makes clear that he was convicted of the rule violation for possessing a controlled dangerous substance, K2. (Id. at 3). He asserts that the “[e]xcessive lighting and things and denial of treatment for (months more) seriously effecting his glaucoma” places him in imminent danger. (Id.). He states, “prisons cannot transfer inmates to punish them for complaining or to [impede] or moot lawsuits.” (Id. at 4).

         In his third claim, Gorbey alleges that the Disciplinary Hearing Officer (“DHO”), Mr. Huff, allowed Gorbey to sit in administrative segregation for seventy days in retaliation for Gorbey's request for a staff representative at his hearing and “then deliberately convicted Gorbey on a bogus 113 that is due to be expunged” for “multiple due process and equal protection violations.” (Id.). In Gorbey's view, his due process rights were violated because a staff member who “took significant part in the incident” also conducted the drug field test. (Id.). Gorbey contends that the testing procedure used in his case is unreliable and a second test to confirm the result was not conducted. (Id. at 5). Gorbey also alleges a violation of his equal protection rights because inmates who are charged with possession of suboxone or have a positive urine test receive automatic lab tests while those charged with possession of K2 do not. (Id.). He adds that BOP staff failed to protect evidence in his case and insists that his disciplinary conviction will ultimately be expunged. (Id.).

         Gorbey brings his fourth claim against Richard D. Bennett, District Judge for the United States District Court for the District of Maryland. (Id. at 6). Gorbey alleges that the Judge Bennett has been “colluding with” BOP staff in the cases he has filed with this Court seeking to challenge “point manipulations” and “transfers.” (Id.). Gorbey previously filed an emergency 28 U.S.C. § 2241 habeas corpus petition for an injunction in this Court. (Id.). Gorbey contends that Judge Bennett “impeded” his petition by dismissing it, requiring him to file another petition which Judge Bennett also dismissed. (Id.). Gorbey asserts that judicial immunity does not protect Judge Bennett in this case because his cases were not docketed and Judge Bennett was “colluding outside the court.” (Id. at 6-7). Gorbey concludes that the United States and the Administrative Offices for the Federal Judiciary are liable for Judge Bennett's actions. (Id. at 7).

         In his fifth claim, Gorbey pleads that Matthew Mellady, Regional Counsel for the BOP's Mid-Atlantic Region, has been denying Gorbey's tort claims against the BOP “for years now.” (Id. at 8). Gorbey explains that Mellady has been denying all of Gorbey's regional appeals, especially those for medical care. (Id.). These appeals include: denial of glaucoma treatment; denial of lower bunk status; denial of treatment for foot injury; denial of medical shoes; and exposure to black mold. (Id.). Gorbey states that Mellady's actions are keeping him in “imminent danger.” (Id.).

         Gorbey's sixth claim alleges that Mr. Taylor, who is the Trust Fund Supervisor for FCI-Cumberland, refused to complete court-ordered trust account statements. (Id.). Gorbey believes that Taylor has refused to do so in order to deliberately impede his access to courts while Gorbey is under imminent danger. (Id.). Gorbey does not expand upon the alleged imminent danger; rather, he simply concludes that all of his efforts to litigate claims concern matters of imminent danger. (Id.).

         In his seventh claim, Gorbey asserts that he has been denied proper medical care which “places him in imminent danger[ ].” (Id. at 9). Gorbey states that he was denied a lower bunk assignment, denied issuance of medical shoes, denied medical treatment for a foot injury, denied treatment for glaucoma, and has been exposed to black mold. (Id.).

         Gorbey seeks: $250, 000.00 from each Defendant; “all point manipulations removed;” an injunction against a transfer or in the alternative, an order to have him stay within the State of Maryland so he can complete his Maryland state-court remedies. (Id. at 9).

         On March 27, 2019, Gorbey filed the instant Complaint in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. (ECF No. 1). The case was transferred to this Court on May 23, 2019. (ECF Nos. 4, 5).

         II. DISCUSSION

         A. Stand ...


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