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Beaulieu v. New Hampshire Governor

United States District Court, D. New Hampshire

August 30, 2018

Christopher Beaulieu a/k/a Crystal Beaulieu [1]
v.
New Hampshire Governor et al.

          Christopher Beaulieu, a/k/a Crystal Beaulieu, pro se Anthony Galdieri, Esq. Laura E. B. Lombardi, Esq.

          ORDER

          Joseph A. DiClerico, Jr. United States District Judge.

         Christopher “Crystal” Beaulieu, who is proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis, filed motions for preliminary injunctive relief, challenging certain conditions of her confinement at the New Hampshire State Prison for Men. The defendants have objected. Beaulieu also moved to withdraw her requests for preliminary injunctive relief, and then filed a motion to disregard the motion to withdraw. The defendants objected to the motion to disregard. In addition, Beaulieu has moved to amend her complaint, and the defendants objected.

         The defendants move for reconsideration of the court's order granting in part and denying in part their motion to dismiss. Beaulieu did not file a response to the motion for reconsideration. Beaulieu has filed a series of motions seeking copies of filings and exhibits and extensions of time.

         Background

         As was explained in the order granting in part and denying in part the defendants' motion to dismiss, Beaulieu is a transsexual inmate who has been incarcerated at the New Hampshire State Prison for Men since January 6, 2011. Although born a male, she identifies as female, which is reflected in her clothing, makeup, and hair style. She began hormone treatment in October of 2015.

         Because of her transsexual status, Beaulieu alleges that she is particularly at risk in the prison environment. She also alleges that she has mental health issues and that the prison staff is aware of those issues. Beaulieu's allegations reflect her tumultuous history at the prison, including allegations of sexual assaults and disciplinary measures imposed on multiple occasions.

         On preliminary review, the magistrate judge ordered service of thirteen claims. Report and Recommendation, doc. no. 16 (Nov. 30, 2017), approved, Order, doc. no. 21 (Jan. 2, 2018). The defendants moved to dismiss most of the claims, and Beaulieu objected. The court granted the motion in part. Doc. no. 54. The claims that remain in the case are as follows:

         2. SHU Sgt. Stefan Czak and Corrections Officer (“CO”) Eric Turner committed the state law tort of negligence, by housing Beaulieu with inmate Shawn Cook in March 2015, knowing that Beaulieu was at particular risk of sexual victimization and that Cook had a history of sexual assault.

         3. Defendants Capt. Michael Edmark and Lt. Scott Marshall, knowing that Beaulieu suffers from mental health problems, violated Beaulieu's Eighth Amendment rights, and committed the state law tort of negligence by housing Beaulieu in a cell below inmate Cook on May 20, 2015, while the investigation of Beaulieu's sexual assault claim against Cook was ongoing, and knowingly allowing Cook to harass and threaten Beaulieu, thus creating a substantial risk to Beaulieu's mental health.

         4. An unnamed NHSP corrections officer, identified in the R&R as John Doe #1, on May 27, 2016, violated Beaulieu's Eighth Amendment rights, and committed the state law tort of negligence, by putting Beaulieu in a cell with an inmate who the officer knew or should have known was a member of a gang with which Beaulieu had prior difficulties, thus placing Beaulieu at a substantial risk of serious harm.

         5(a). CO Christopher Brownlie, CO Young, and CO Dominic Salce committed the state law tort of negligence, by placing Beaulieu at a substantial risk of serious harm from other inmates, in that:

a. CO Christopher Brownlie told another inmate that Beaulieu was a “rat”.

         5(b & c). CO Christopher Brownlie, CO Young, and CO Dominic Salce violated Beaulieu's Eighth Amendment rights, and committed the state law tort of negligence, by placing Beaulieu at a substantial risk of serious harm from other inmates, in that:

b. CO Young told inmates that Beaulieu was a “rat” and a “skinner, ” and
c. CO Dominic Salce yelled, where all of the inmates on Beaulieu's tier could hear him, that Beaulieu had requested statement forms, which Salce knew would cause other inmates to think Beaulieu is a “rat.”

         6. Warden Zenk, Maj. Jon Fouts, Capt. Boynton, Lt. Paul Carroll, Sgt. Gary Lydick, Sgt. Jeremiah Totten, Cpl. Stone, and Cpl. Pat Wright, knowing that Beaulieu suffers from mental health problems, committed the state law tort of negligence, by allowing Brownlie to work in proximity to, and interact with, Beaulieu during the investigation of Beaulieu's sexual assault accusation against Brownlie, and allowing Brownlie to harass Beaulieu, thus creating a substantial risk of serious harm to Beaulieu's mental health.

         7. Sgt. Lydick, Lt. Carroll, and Capt. Edmark committed the state law tort of negligence, in that, knowing that CO David Dionne had previously used excessive force on Beaulieu and harassed Beaulieu, and knowing that Beaulieu suffers from mental health problems, those defendants allowed Dionne after July 28, 2016, to continue to work in proximity to Beaulieu, thus creating a substantial risk of serious harm to Beaulieu's mental health.

         8. On July 6, 2017, Sgt. Totten, CO Jason Caruso and Lt. Marshall committed the state law tort of negligence by denying Beaulieu's request to see a mental health worker when Beaulieu told the officers she was actively suicidal and instead told Beaulieu to “just kill [her]self, ” and by laughing at and provoking Beaulieu, thus creating a substantial risk of serious harm to Beaulieu's mental health.

         9. In retaliation for Beaulieu's First Amendment activities including her filing of a complaint against CO Brownlie, accusing that officer of sexually assaulting her, as well as Beaulieu's oral and written grievances, and lawsuits filed against other DOC staff members:

a. An unnamed officer, identified in the R&R as John Doe #2, charged Beaulieu with a disciplinary violation for disrespecting CO Chandonnet, when Beaulieu objected to Chandonnet's actions that Beaulieu considered to be sexual assault;
b. Sgt. Pelletier, CO John Aulis, Lt. Andrew Newcomb, and CO Timothy Miller, Capt. Masse, Cpl. Paz, and CO Lamontagne, charged Beaulieu with multiple disciplinary infractions;
c. Unnamed officers, identified in the R&R as the “Keep Away John Does, ” instituted a “Keep Away” directive preventing Beaulieu and her boyrfriend, Steven Newcombe, from having any type of contact with one another.
d. On May 11, 2017, Sgt. Lydick inflicted unnecessary force on Beaulieu, causing her severe pain;
e. Cpl. Wright told Beaulieu to kill herself;
f. CO Young told other inmates that Beaulieu is a “rat” and a “skinner”; and
g. On July 6, 2017, Beaulieu was subjected to unprovoked excessive force, tazed, kicked, and placed in a restraint chair by Sgt. Totten, CO Caruso, Lt. Carroll, Capt. Edmark, and Lydick.

         10. On an unspecified date in 2016, CO G. Nimorowski, while escorting Beaulieu between areas of the prison while Beaulieu was handcuffed, violated Beaulieu's Eighth Amendment right not to be subjected to excessive force maliciously or sadistically applied, in that Nimorwski, without provocation, pulled and twisted Beaulieu's arm, and then, when Beaulieu told Nimorowski that he was hurting her, Nimorowski forcefully pushed her handcuffs toward her elbows, causing her pain;

         11. On December 5, 2016, Sgt. Totten, while escorting Beaulieu between areas of the prison, after Beaulieu said she refused to live on a particular tier in SHU and then stated that she was suicidal, violated Beaulieu's Eighth Amendment right not to be subjected to excessive force maliciously or sadistically applied, in that:

a. Sgt. Totten slammed Beaulieu's head against the window, and held her against the ...

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