Broadus v. Corrections Corporation of America, Inc. et al

A state inmate filed a pro se action pursuant to 42 U.S.C.S. sec. 1983, alleging that the defendants, a company that operated a prison for the State of Oklahoma and employees who worked at the prison, violated his constitutional rights by subjecting him to environmental tobacco smoke.  A magistrate recommended that Broadus’ claims be dismissed without prejudice on the grounds that he failed to exhaust his administrative remedies before filing the lawsuit.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit affirmed, ruling that the “Prison Litigation Reform Act (‘PLRA’) states that ‘no action shall be brought with respect to prison conditions under section 1983…until such administrative remedies are exhausted..”  Noting that proper exhaustion of remedies in this case “would have entailed full compliance with the prison’s three-step grievance procedures,” the Court of Appeals also ruled that “there is no indication that he ever properly filed a written grievance regarding his alleged exposure to environmental tobacco smoke.”

2006 U.S. App. LEXIS 2042 (U.S.C.A. 10th Cir.).