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Archie Cranford v. Dawn Manion

March 15, 2011


The opinion of the court was delivered by: Michael J. Seng United States Magistrate Judge


(ECF No. 1)

Plaintiff Archie Cranford ("Plaintiff") is a civil detainee proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff consented to Magistrate Judge jurisdiction on August 15, 2008. (ECF No. 5.) No other parties have appeared. Plaintiff's original complaint is before the Court for screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A.


The in forma pauperis statute provides that "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 Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 127 S.Ct. 1955 (2007)), and courts "are not required to indulge unwarranted inferences," Doe I v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 572 F.3d 677, 681 (9th Cir. 2009) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted). While factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusion are not. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949.


Plaintiff's Complaint and its attachments total over one hundred pages none of which identify separate causes of action or identify the constitutional rights allegedly violated. Instead, Plaintiff provides sparse facts relating to random events involving a number of unrelated Defendants. He fails to provide any guidance as to what events occurred when or in what order. He provides no context for the events described. Nevertheless, the Court has attempted to piece together his essential allegations and identify potential constitutional violations. Having done so, the best the Court can tell is that Plaintiff's Complaint alleges the following:

Plaintiff is civilly committed to Coalinga State Hospital ("CSH") as a Sexually Violent Predator ("SVP"). On May 8, 2008, he was placed on "one-to-one"-meaning he had a staff member assigned to watch him at all times-based on his threats of self-harm. Two other patients in Plaintiff's dorm disliked the fact that Plaintiff had one-to-one staff supervision because that staff presence made it impossible for the prisoners to carry out illegal activities. They verbally threatened Plaintiff.

Plaintiff informed Defendant Sara Powers that he had been threatened. Powers contacted her unit supervisor, Letty Avila. Neither took any action. Plaintiff contends he should have been moved out of the dorms and into a single-man room.

At some point (it is not clear whether before or after Plaintiff talked with Defendant Powers), Defendant Deloris Teran was assigned to monitor Plaintiff. While Teran was responsible for Plaintiff, Plaintiff's two dorm-mates assaulted him. Plaintiff does not describe what occurred before, during or after this assault or whether it caused him any injuries.

At some point after the original assault, Defendant Alex was assigned to monitor Plaintiff and was supposed to step in as necessary to protect Plaintiff from violence. However, while Alex was across the room speaking with another staff member a patient (it is unclear whether this patient was also one of the perpetrators of the first assault) kicked Plaintiff in the knee and bruised his knee. Alex did nothing to stop the patient from kicking Plaintiff.

Defendants Mellony Ogle and Dawn Manion work in the law library at CSH. Plaintiff was supposed to get an hour every week in the law library. However, for a period of two months, every time Plaintiff went to the law library, Ogle asked him to leave after only thirty minutes. Plaintiff reported Ogle's behavior to Manion. Manion failed to correct it.

Defendant Lishbook was assigned to monitor Plaintiff at some point. Plaintiff was in severe pain due to a spinal injury so he laid on his bed. Lishbook falsely accused Plaintiff of masturbating in her presence and filed a "green sheet" against him. Plaintiff's unit team took away his pass level, meaning that Plaintiff was confined to the housing unit for some period of time.

Plaintiff also appears to allege that the medical care provided at CSH is deficient. He provides case law and the legal standard outlining CSH's obligation to provide adequate medical care, but fails to allege any facts about the care he received, ...

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