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Spencer v. Clark

May 20, 2010

EDWARD B. SPENCER, PLAINTIFF,
v.
K. CLARK, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



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

ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM WITH LEAVE TO FILE AMENDED COMPLAINT WITHIN THIRTY DAYS (Doc. 1) RESPONSE DUE WITHIN 30 DAYS

Screening Order

I. Background

A. Procedural History

Plaintiff Edward B. Spencer ("Plaintiff") is a prisoner in the custody of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation ("CDCR"). Plaintiff is proceeding pro se in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff initially filed this action in Kings County Superior Court. On October 30, 2009, Defendant Ken Clark filed a notice of removal.*fn1

B. 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).

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)(2). Detailed factual allegations are not required, but "[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice." Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009) (citing Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007)). Plaintiff must set forth "sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to 'state a claim that is plausible on its face.'" Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949 (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555). While factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusions are not. Id.

II. Summary of Complaint

Plaintiff is currently incarcerated at California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility ("SATF") in Corcoran, California, where the events giving rise to this action occurred. Plaintiff names as Defendant Ken Clark, warden of SATF.

Plaintiff contends that Defendant Clark has a legal duty to address and respond to inmate appeals. (Pl.'s Compl. ¶ 1.) Plaintiff contends that Defendant Clark fails to comply with prison regulation as to the processing of inmate appeals. (Id.) Plaintiff lists some examples of inmate appeals that Defendant has failed to address. Plaintiff grieved the lack of an enlarged weekly copy of the menu for prisoners with vision problems, like Plaintiff. (Pl.'s Compl. ¶ 4.) On February 7, 2008, Defendant granted this appeal; however, the enlarged menu was done only once. (Id.)

On July 1, 2008, Plaintiff submitted an appeal requesting the location of his brother and other associates. (Pl.'s Compl. ¶ 5.) On July 23, Sgt. K. Turner denied the appeal at the informal level. (Id.) On August 12, 2008, Plaintiff submitted the appeal for informal response. (Id.) Between August 19 and September 4, Plaintiff requested current status of the inmate appeal.

(Id.) On September 9, 2008 and February 9, 2009, Plaintiff sent a duplicate appeal to the Defendant, which was screened out. (Id.) On March 1, 2009, C/O Archuleta denied Plaintiff's appeal at the informal level. (Id.) On March 17, 2009, Plaintiff requested a current status of his appeal, and received no response. (Id.) On April 6, 2009, Plaintiff forwarded his appeal to the Chief of the Inmate Appeals Branch. (Id.) On April 28, 2009, Plaintiff's appeal was screened out. (Id.)

On October 9, 2008, Plaintiff filed an appeal against LVN Howard and Mata for denying him medical care and being unprofessional. (Pl.'s Compl. ΒΆ 6.) This ...


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