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Doe v. Campos

September 23, 2009

JOHN DOE, PLAINTIFF,
v.
JULIO CAMPOS, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Dennis L. Beck United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER DISMISSING DEFENDANT BINDLER FROM ACTION (Doc. 23)

Order

Plaintiff John Doe*fn1 ("Plaintiff") is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff filed this action on March 23, 2009. On August 20, 2009, the Court issued an order finding that Plaintiff's amended complaint states cognizable claims against Defendants Campos, Acosta, Syed, Trinh, Tilton and Doe for violation of the Eighth Amendment, but does not state any claims against Defendant Bindler. The Court ordered Plaintiff to either file a second amended complaint or notify the Court of his willingness to proceed only on the claims found to be cognizable. On September 3, 2009, Plaintiff notified the Court that he does not wish to amend and is willing to proceed on the claims found cognizable. Based on Plaintiff's notice, this Order now issues.

I. Screening Requirement

The Court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners seeking relief against a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). The Court must dismiss a complaint or portion thereof if the prisoner has raised claims that are legally "frivolous or malicious," that fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or that seek monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1),(2). "Notwithstanding any filing fee, or any portion thereof, that may have been paid, the court shall dismiss the case at any time if the court determines that . . . the action or appeal . . . fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted." 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii).

"Rule 8(a)'s simplified pleading standard applies to all civil actions, with limited exceptions," none of which applies to section 1983 actions. Swierkiewicz v. Sorema N. A., 534 U.S. 506, 512 (2002); Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a). Pursuant to Rule 8(a), a complaint must contain "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief . . . ." Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a). "Such a statement must simply give the defendant fair notice of what the plaintiff's claim is and the grounds upon which it rests." Swierkiewicz, 534 U.S. at 512. However, "the liberal pleading standard . . . applies only to a plaintiff's factual allegations." Neitze v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 330 n.9 (1989). "[A] liberal interpretation of a civil rights complaint may not supply essential elements of the claim that were not initially pled." Bruns v. Nat'l Credit Union Admin., 122 F.3d 1251, 1257 (9th Cir. 1997) (quoting Ivey v. Bd. of Regents, 673 F.2d 266, 268 (9th Cir. 1982)).

II. Summary of Plaintiff's Complaint

Plaintiff is currently housed at Kern Valley State Prison ("KVSP"), where the events at issue in this action allegedly occurred. Plaintiff alleges a violation of the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

A. Defendant Campos

Plaintiff alleges that in November 2005, inmate Navarro threatened Plaintiff to "cooperate" with defendant Campos, a Licensed Vocational Nurse at K.V.S.P. Plaintiff alleges that inmate Navarro is a "shot-caller" and that Plaintiff understood Navarro's threats as an order to subject himself to sexual exploitation by defendant Campos or face serious danger. Plaintiff alleges that he was sexually assaulted by defendant Campos on a regular basis from November to approximately December 2005 or January 2006. Plaintiff alleges that in return, defendant Campos delivered drugs to inmate Navarro.

The Eighth Amendment protects prisoners from inhumane methods of punishment and from inhumane conditions of confinement. Morgan v. Morgensen, 465 F.3d 1041, 1045 (9th Cir. 2006). Extreme deprivations are required to make out a conditions of confinement claim, and only those deprivations denying the minimal civilized measure of life's necessities are sufficiently grave to form the basis of an Eighth Amendment violation. Hudson v. McMillian, 503 U.S. 1, 9, 112 S.Ct. 995 (1992) (citations and quotations omitted). In order to state a claim for violation of the Eighth Amendment, the plaintiff must allege facts sufficient to support a claim that prison officials knew of and disregarded a substantial risk of serious harm to the plaintiff. E.g., Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 847, 114 S.Ct. 1970 (1994); Frost v. Agnos, 152 F.3d 1124, 1128 (9th Cir. 1998).

The circumstances, nature, and duration of the deprivations are critical in determining whether the conditions complained of are grave enough to form the basis of a viable Eighth Amendment claim. Johnson v. Lewis, 217 F.3d 726, 731 (9th Cir. 2006)

Plaintiff's allegations that defendant Campos sexually abused Plaintiff are sufficient to state a claim against him for ...


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