Easterling v. Thurmer, No. 17-1581 (7th Cir. 2018)Annotate this Case
Easterling, a Wisconsin inmate with convictions for sexually assaulting a minor and armed robbery, sued correctional officials under 42 U.S.C. 1983, contending that they violated his constitutional rights to due process and freedom of association by denying him visits with his daughter in 2004 and 2013. Easterling, having inquired about visitation in 2013, was told that he would first have to complete a sex offender program that was not then available. Instead of filing a formal request, Easterling filed suit. The court dismissed the claims based on 2004 as time‐barred. With respect to the claims based on 2013, it entered summary judgment for the defendants, concluding that other defenses blocked that claim. The Seventh Circuit affirmed. The claims arising out of actions taken in 2004 were barred by the six-year statute of limitations. The remaining defendants permissibly denied him visits in 2013 because he did not use the correct procedure to request them. Easterling’s “information requests” in 2013 were not formal “denials” of visitation; the warden Haines and the probation officer were not liable for violating Easterling’s rights.