Ortiz v. Arnone
To prevail on a claim that a prison supervisor is legally responsible, an inmate must allege the prison supervisor: 1.) directly participated in the constitutional violation; 2.) failed to remedy a wrong, after he was informed: 3.) created a policy or custom that sanctioned conduct that amounted to a constitutional violation (or allowed the policy or custom to continue); 4.) was grossly negligent in supervising subordinates who committed a violation; or 5.) failed to act on information that indicated that unconstitutional acts were taking place. The plaintiff inmate, who is in prison at the Northern Correctional Center, alleged that Mark Frayne and Gerard Gagne denied his requests for mental health treatment. On Jan. 3, 2012, the plaintiff allegedly tied a sheet around his neck and attempted to commit suicide on the ladder to the upper bunk in his cell. Allegedly, Correction Officers Rutkowski and Amaral responded, to prevent the plaintiff's suicide attempt, and used excessive force. The plaintiff wrote a letter to a prison supervisor, Leo Arnone, to complain. The plaintiff filed a complaint, alleging deliberate indifference to a serious medical need, excessive use of force and that Arnone, as a prison supervisor, was legally responsible. Mere receipt of a letter is insufficient to result in supervisory legal responsibility, pursuant to the 2nd Circuit's 1997 decision, Sealey v. Giltner. The District Court dismissed claims against Arnone for supervisory legal responsibility. The plaintiff's complaint adequately alleged deliberate indifference to a serious mental health condition and excessive use of force, in response to the plaintiff's attempt to commit suicide. The court ordered the remaining defendants to file answers or motions to dismiss within 70 days.