New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

WILLIAMS v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2002-015-229, Claim No. 105109, Motion No. M-64396


Synopsis


Court has no jurisdiction to adjudicate claim based exclusively on alleged violation of claimant's right guaranteed by 8th Amendment to U.S. Constitution.

Case Information

UID:
2002-015-229
Claimant(s):
LAMONT L. WILLIAMS
Claimant short name:
WILLIAMS
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
105109
Motion number(s):
M-64396
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
FRANCIS T. COLLINS
Claimant's attorney:
Lamont L. Williams, Pro SeNo Appearance
Defendant's attorney:
Honorable Eliot Spitzer, Attorney General
By: G. Lawrence Dillon, EsquireAssistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
March 6, 2002
City:
Saratoga Springs
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

The State's motion to dismiss the claim on the grounds that the Court lacks jurisdiction to entertain a claim based exclusively on the alleged violation of claimant's rights guaranteed under the Eighth Amendment[1] to the United States Constitution is granted. This motion was unopposed. The claim seeks to recover for pain, suffering and mental anguish allegedly resulting from the method of restraint used to secure claimant during an inter-facility bus transfer on August 7, 2001. Claimant alleges that he "was forced to sit still while a extra set of cuffs attached to my ankle cuff and waist chain that had me in a position that you would hog tie a deer." Claimant further alleges that DOCS personnel ignored his complaints during the three and one-half hour transfer from Mid-State Correctional Facility to Downstate Correctional Facility thus violating his rights under the First and Eighth Amendments to the United States Constitution for the reason of "talking to myself that resulted in excessive force on my person by the officers."

The defendant has moved for dismissal of the claim on the grounds that it states a claim exclusively based on an alleged violation of the United States Constitution which is not justiciable in the New York State Court of Claims.

It is well established that claims alleging violations of an individual's rights under the United States Constitution are not subject to adjudication in the Court of Claims (Brown v State of New York, 89 NY2d 172, 184; Zulu v State of New York, ____ Misc 2d ____, 2001 WL 880833 (NY Ct Cl) Ferrer v State of New York, 172 Misc 2d 1, 5). Nor is the State a "person" amenable to suit under 42 USC § 1983 (Ferrick v State of New York, 198 AD2d 822; Thomas, Matter of, v New York Temporary State Comm. on Regulation of Lobbying, 83 AD2d 723, affd, 56 NY2d 656) Accordingly, claimant's attempt to predicate liability against the State upon an alleged violation of the First and Eighth Amendments to the United States Constitution is unavailing.

The instant claim is, accordingly, dismissed.


March 6, 2002
Saratoga Springs, New York

HON. FRANCIS T. COLLINS
Judge of the Court of Claims


The Court considered the following papers:

1. Notice of motion dated November 28, 2001;

2. Affirmation of G. Lawrence Dillon dated November 28, 2001 with exhibits;


[1]The claim appears to assert a claim under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution as well as under the Eighth Amendment. This fact does not change the decision herein.