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Hadley v. Yates

September 25, 2009


The opinion of the court was delivered by: Craig M. Kellison United States Magistrate Judge


Plaintiff, a former state prisoner proceeding pro se, brings this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.*fn1 Pending before the court is plaintiff's amended complaint (Doc. 11).*fn2

The court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners seeking relief against a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). The court must dismiss a complaint or portion thereof if it: (1) is frivolous or malicious; (2) fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted; or (3) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1), (2). Moreover, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure require that complaints contain a ". . . short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2). This means that claims must be stated simply, concisely, and directly. See McHenry v. Renne, 84 F.3d 1172, 1177 (9th Cir. 1996) (referring to Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(e)(1)). These rules are satisfied if the complaint gives the defendant fair notice of the plaintiff's claim and the grounds upon which it rests. See Kimes v. Stone, 84 F.3d 1121, 1129 (9th Cir. 1996). Because plaintiff must allege with at least some degree of particularity overt acts by specific defendants which support the claims, vague and conclusory allegations fail to satisfy this standard.


Plaintiff names the following as defendants: Yates, Attlin, Tilton, and Flores.*fn3

Plaintiff alleges facts relating to: (1) replacement eyeglasses; (2) damage to his flat screen television; (3) confiscation of items from outside vendors; (4) denial of "first access" to wheelchair-accessible toilet, shower, and sink; and (5) a bill for Direct TV service; and (6) fraudulent police reports.

Replacement Eyeglasses

Plaintiff states that, while housed in "Chino State Prison," he was assaulted by another inmate and that his eyeglasses were destroyed in the incident.*fn4 According to plaintiff, he was provided medical treatment and "referrals" were written in order to obtain replacement eyeglasses at state expense. Plaintiff alleges that "the glasses or even a visit to an optometrist was denied." After plaintiff filed an inmate grievance, he was informed by the appeals coordinator that, regardless of the commitments made by staff at plaintiff's prior prison, replacement eyeglasses would not be provided at state expense because CDCR is not responsible for personal property destroyed by another inmate. Plaintiff states that the refusal to provide him glasses at state expense is in violation of California regulations, which consider eyeglasses to be a "health care appliance" and not personal property. According to plaintiff, he then filed a grievance concerning the glasses with defendant Attlin, who did not initially respond. Plaintiff later learned from defendant Attlin that his grievance had been denied.

Damage to Television

Plaintiff claims that in March 2009 he received a "special purchase package" which included a new flat screen television and headphones. According to plaintiff, prison officials refused to give plaintiff the antenna which came with the television and instructed him that he could plug the television directly into the cable outlet in the prison gym. Plaintiff claims that other inmates in the gym denied him access to a cable outlet. Plaintiff was told by the correctional officer on duty that access to the cable outlet was "first come first serve." Plaintiff adds that, "after several trys [sic]," he was allowed by other inmates to plug in his television "provided he could get someone to plug it up for him. . . ." Apparently, the cable outlets are high up on the wall and plaintiff, who is confined to a wheelchair, cannot reach the outlet. Plaintiff states that he filed an inmate grievance requesting that a cable outlet he can reach from his wheelchair be installed. Plaintiff claims that he was informed that his request would be granted and that a "planning person" would be brought in "to see how the wheelchair asessible [sic] cable outlet would be installed." Plaintiff states that, a few days later, "the Sgt. returned with defendant Attlin . . . [who] took it upon himself to twist the cable connected to my T.V. and damaged the hookup." Plaintiff states that the television will need to be replaced or repaired. According to plaintiff, he was told by defendant Attlin that he would no longer be allowed to use any cable outlet.

Confiscation of Items from Outside Vendors

Plaintiff complains generally about items received from outside vendors being confiscated on orders from defendants Yates and Attlin.

"First Access" to Wheelchair-Accessible Toilet, Shower, and Sink Plaintiff claims that defendant Attlin, "with the approval of defendant Yates," instructed all correctional officers in the prison gym that "ADA, DPW inmates" have no right of "first access" to the only wheelchair-accessible toilet, shower, or sink in the facility. According to plaintiff, he and other disabled ...

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