Iatonda Taylor, 44, is serving a life sentence at the Bellamy Creek Correctional Facility for killing his brother, Moise Taylor, 36, with a butcher knife in Grand Rapids, MI, in 2006. Naturally, Taylor wants to serve his remaining years in custody as comfortably as possible. Maybe this would be the reason he filed a lawsuit when the prison ran out of waffles, a popular breakfast item on the menu.
The lawsuit was filed against Aramark, the prison’s former food service provider. According to the Grand Rapids Press, Taylor’s complaint stemmed from the prison serving peanut butter and jelly sandwiches when waffles ran out, one morning. Furthermore, leftover peach cobbler was served instead of the announced desert, banana pudding and, and “reconstituted scrambled eggs” were served when grilled cheese sandwiches ran out. It is Taylor’s claim that the undesired food selections left him vulnerable to bodily harm due to rioting that never happened. The Grand Rapids Press reports:
Taylor said the near-riot happened May 2, when Aramark ran out of waffles before everyone had been served. Instead, they got a couple of slices of bread and peanut butter and jelly. Prisoners became agitated and threatened they would not move if more waffles weren’t brought to the prison from a nearby store.
Taylor said he started to leave the line, but other prisoners told him he would be a “sell-out” if he left. Prison officers threatened inmates with handcuffs and segregation, and after additional officers arrived, they did handcuff and remove some prisoners.
Taylor was not among them, and he was not disciplined. But he said he now lives in constant fear of a riot.
U.S. District Judge Paul Maloney in Kalamazoo, who presided over the proceedings, dismissed Taylor’s case, stating that he did not prove that his constitutional rights were violated. He also tossed out a claim that inmates were “deprived of essential, nutritious food. The meals were adequate to sustain normal health.”