New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

MADISON v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2001-005-542, Claim No. 101655, Motion No. M-64122


Claimant's motion for leave to amend/supplement his claim is denied.

Case Information

Claimant short name:
Footnote (claimant name) :

Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
Motion number(s):
Cross-motion number(s):

Claimant's attorney:
Diallo Rafik Madison,Pro Se
Defendant's attorney:
Eliot Spitzer, Attorney GeneralBy: Timothy P. Mulvey, Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
November 16, 2001

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)


On October 17, 2001, the following papers, numbered 1 to 5, were read on motion by Claimant for an order allowing him to amend/supplement his claim:

1, 2 Notice of Motion and Affidavit Annexed
  1. Opposing Affirmation
4, 5 Filed Papers: Claim, Answer

Upon the foregoing papers, this motion is denied.

In this motion Claimant seeks to amend/supplement his claim herein, filed on December 22, 1999, specifically seeking to add "constitutional torts for the failure of a state employee's to fulfill a state constitutional duty . . . and to add damages, as well as to add the cruel and unusual punishment provision in Article I, §5 of the new york constitution, exempt Art.16" (sic).

The filed claim relates to an incident occurring on or about October 30, 1999, at the Auburn Correctional Facility in which Claimant was allegedly assaulted and injured by a fellow inmate, purportedly wielding several weapons, in the main yard. Claimant argues that the proposed supplemental claims, raising constitutional issues of due process, and cruel and unusual punishment evolve from the same underlying incident, and "supports Court of claims jurisdiction over this matter rather that require separate adjudications of Federal court under 42 USC § 1981 of the very same case" (sic).

The amended/supplemental pleadings which Claimant seeks permission to file are appended to his moving papers and allege as First Cause of Action, inter alia, negligence by employees of the Defendant in breaching the duty of care of the Claimant and to keep him free from assault and in failing to maintain a safe recreation area; a Second Cause of Action alleging negligent training of correction officers; a Third Cause of Action alleging that Claimant was subjected to cruel and unusual punishment, citing De La Rosa v State of New York, 173 Misc 2d 1007; a Fourth Cause of Action for the denial of equal protection, and a Fifth Cause of Action which seems to allege negligent security measures.

The Defendant's opposition argues that the motion seeks to add superfluous causes of action contending that the alleged negligence constituted cruel and unusual punishment, and a violation of Claimant's due process rights purportedly under the state constitution. There is no support whatsoever in Claimant's moving papers that addresses the alleged due process violations, other than the mere reference thereto. Claimant has failed to articulate what due process right was supposedly violated. With respect to allegations of cruel and unusual punishment, case law suggests that no constitutional remedy exists when Claimant's "constitutional tort allegations may be analogized to an existing common-law tort[s] for which there are adequate alternate remedies" (Augat v State of New York, 244 AD2d 835, 837, lv denied 91 NY2d 814; see also, Remley v State of New York, 174 Misc 2d 523). Here the injuries alleged could be redressed by a common law cause of action sounding in negligence (Remley, id.). Claimant alleges no cause of action that is not otherwise cognizable under the common law, and as such no viable allegation under the State Constitution may survive (Brown v State of New York, 89 NY2d 172; Remley v State of New York, supra). To the extent that Claimant alleges a cause of action under the federal constitution, whether premised upon 42 USC § 1983 (1981), this court has no jurisdiction over such allegations (see, Zagarella v State of New York, 149 AD2d 503).

The motion is denied.

November 16, 2001
Rochester, New York
Judge of the Court of Claims