Wilson v. Hambrick, et al.

An inmate in Kentucky alleged an Eighth Amendment violation of her right to be free from cruel and unusual punishment because she is a nonsmoker housed in a smoke-filled environment with inadequate ventilation and that, as a result, she suffers from hypertension, sore throat, eye and skin irritation, headaches and coughing.  The district court dismissed her claim as being frivolous.  The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed and remanded her claim concerning the adverse health effects of exposure to ETS.  The court said that she “described to the warden the symptoms she was suffering due to ETS exposure, but the warden refused her request to be moved away from smokers.  These factual allegations, if true, would support an argument that the warden . . . was deliberately indifferent to Wilson’s reactions to tobacco smoke.  Accordingly, under Helling v. McKinney, the claim against warden Margaret Hambrick was not frivolous.”

7 F.3d 237, 8.4 TPLR 2.360, No.92-6129, (6th Cir. 1993).