Hill v. Snyder, No. 15-2607 (7th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Hill, an Indiana inmate, sued prison staff under 42 U.S.C. 1983, alleging that they had violated the Eighth Amendment by failing to protect him from inmates who threw feces at him on four occasions in 2011-2012. The district court granted summary judgment for defendants on the ground that Hill had not exhausted administrative remedies as required by the Prison Litigation Reform Act, 42 U.S.C. 1997e(a). Hill claimed that prison staff had prevented him from filing formal grievances. For the first two incidents, they had improperly refused to process grievance forms. For the third and fourth incidents, they prevented him from filing formal grievances. His counselor refused to give him a grievance form after the third incident, and after the fourth incident, defendant Snyder demanded to know its exact time. Hill is now time-barred by the prison’s grievance policy from further pursuing administrative remedies. The Seventh Circuit concluded that summary judgment was improper for three of the incidents. Evidence of refusals to give Hill an available form was sufficient to permit a finding that Hill was prevented from grieving these incidents. The administrative remedies were not available to him. He was not required to hunt for a form from others.