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Charles Stewart v. J. Tilton

October 17, 2011

CHARLES STEWART,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
J. TILTON, ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sheila K. Oberto United States Magistrate Judge

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS RECOMMENDING MOTION FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL BE DENIED AND ACTION BE DISMISSED FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM UNDER SECTION 1983 (Docs. 17-19)

THIRTY-DAY OBJECTION PERIOD

Findings and Recommendations Following Screening of Amended Complaint

I. Background

Plaintiff Charles Stewart, a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis, filed this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 on June 3, 2010. On May 18, 2011, the Court dismissed Plaintiff's complaint, with leave to amend, for failure to state a claim.

On August 3, 2011, August 15, 2011, and August 22, 2011, Plaintiff filed three documents. In light of Plaintiff's pro se status and the contents of the filings, the Court finds that it is in the interest of justice to make an exception and view the filings of August 3 and August 22 together as the amended complaint.*fn1 The filing of August 15 seeks the appointment of counsel, and it will be addressed after the merits of Plaintiff's claims are evaluated.

II. Screening Requirement and Standard

The Court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners seeking relief against a governmental entity or an 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, ___ U.S. ___, ___, 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 conclusions are not. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949.

To state a claim, Plaintiff must demonstrate that each defendantpersonally participated in the deprivation of his rights. Id. at 1949. This requires the presentation of factual allegations sufficient to state a plausible claim for relief. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949-50; Moss v. U.S. Secret Service, 572 F.3d 962, 969 (9th Cir. 2009). The mere possibility of misconduct falls short of meeting this plausibility standard. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949-50; Moss, 572 F.3d at 969.

III. Plaintiff's Claims

A. Summary of Allegations

Plaintiff, who is currently incarcerated at California State Prison-Corcoran, brings this action against California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Secretary J. Tilton, California Correctional Institution (CCI) Warden J. Sullivan, and California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility (SATF) Warden K. Allison for violation of his rights under the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

Plaintiff's claims arise from two events. The Court summarized the bases for Plaintiff's claims in its ...


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