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David W. Fraire v. Solano County Jail Detention Facility

February 10, 2011

DAVID W. FRAIRE, PLAINTIFF,
v.
SOLANO COUNTY JAIL DETENTION FACILITY, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



ORDER

Plaintiff is a county prisoner proceeding without counsel in an action brought under 42 U.S.C. 1983. In addition to filing a complaint, plaintiff has filed an application to proceed in forma pauperis. This proceeding was referred to this court by Local Rule 302 pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 636(b)(1) and is before the undersigned pursuant to plaintiff's consent. See E.D. Cal. Local Rules, Appx. A, at (k)(4).

I. Request to Proceed In Forma Pauperis

Plaintiff has requested leave to proceedin forma pauperis pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1915. Dckt. No. 2. Plaintiff's application makes the showing required by 28 U.S.C. 1915(a)(1) and (2). Accordingly, by separate order, the court directs the agency having custody of plaintiff to collect and forward the appropriate monthly payments for the filing fee as set forth in 28 U.S.C. 1915(b)(1) and (2).

II. Screening Order

Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1915A, the court shall review "a complaint in a civil action in which a prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity." 28 U.S.C. 1915A(a). "On review, the court shall identify cognizable claims or dismiss the complaint, or any portion of the complaint, if the complaint (1) is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted; or (2) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief." Id. 1915A(b).

A district court must construe a pro se pleading "liberally" to determine if it states a claim and, prior to dismissal, tell a plaintiff of deficiencies in his complaint and give plaintiff an opportunity to cure them. See Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1130-31 (9th Cir. 2000). While detailed factual allegations are not required, "[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 Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007)). Plaintiff must set forth "sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to 'state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'" Id. (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570).

A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged. The plausibility standard is not akin to a "probability requirement," but it asks for more than a sheer possibility that a defendant has acted unlawfully. Where a complaint pleads facts that are merely consistent with a defendant's liability, it stops short of the line between possibility and plausibility of entitlement to relief.

Id. (citations and quotation marks omitted). Although legal conclusions can provide the framework of a complaint, they must be supported by factual allegations, and are not entitled to the assumption of truth. Id. at 1950.

The Civil Rights Act under which this action was filed provides: Every person who, under color of [state law] . . . subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States . . . to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution . . . shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress . . . .

42 U.S.C. 1983. An individual defendant is not liable on a civil rights claim unless the facts establish the defendant's personal involvement in the constitutional deprivation or a causal connection between the defendant's wrongful conduct and the alleged constitutional deprivation. See Hansen v. Black, 885 F.2d 642, 646 (9th Cir. 1989); Johnson v. Duffy, 588 F.2d 740, 743-44 (9th Cir. 1978)

The court has reviewed plaintiff's complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1915A and finds it does not state a cognizable claim. Plaintiff alleges the following:

(It is noted and logged that I David W. Fraire have a keep away from Southern Hispanic Inmates.) On 8-21-2010 a facility breach of security was committed by deputy sheriff Gilligan and Redoble while they were working the control tower (4 Max I) they popped my cell door open during Southern-Hispanic dayroom recreation time causing/staging a gladiator episode (combat) during this coarse [sic] they placed me in imminent danger of serious physical injury. This incodent [sic] occurred [sic] in B-module, max security 4th floor. Do [sic] to being forced by staff to defend myself I was handcuffed and placed in [] (the hole) with a total los[s] of all priviledges [sic] - no T.V. - no phone, no commisary [sic], no visits, no razors to shave - for up to 30 days. Lt. Marsh is facility commander. My grievance was routed to Sgt. Cameron. Sgt. Orgensen is the [] officer who responded to my grievance stating that my behavior will not be tolerated. Deputy Martinez brought me back my griev[ance] and stated that my grievance is ungrievable. Deputy Sheriff Pereda classified me to punishment[,] los[s] of all priviledges [sic] - 10 to 30 days. . . . (cruel and unusual punishment and the right to grieve the government).

Compl. IV. To the extent plaintiff wishes to state a claim for violation of his Eighth Amendment rights, the court notes that 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 (1992). 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 (1994); Frost v. Agnos, 152 F.3d 1124, 1128 (9th Cir. 1998).

Plaintiff's allegations fail under these standards, as plaintiff claims only that defendants Gilligan and Redoble opened plaintiff's cell door during Southern Hispanic dayroom recreation time. While plaintiff concludes that the purpose of opening his cell door was to stage a "gladiator episode," his mere allegation that he had a "keep away" order from Southern Hispanics is not sufficient to state a plausible claim that ...


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