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Ronald F. Martinez v. P. Tapia

May 24, 2012

RONALD F. MARTINEZ,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
P. TAPIA, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



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

ORDER DISMISSING PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT, WITH LEAVE TO AMEND, AMENDED COMPLAINT DUE WITHIN (ECF No. 1) THIRTY DAYS

/

Plaintiff Ronald Martinez ("Plaintiff") is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

Plaintiff initiated this action on December 21, 2011. (Compl., ECF No. 1.) His Complaint is now before the Court for screening. No other parties have appeared.

The Court finds that Plaintiff's Complaint fails to state a claim.

I. 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, ___ U.S. ___, ___, 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 that is plausible on its face.'" Iqbal, 129 S. Ct. at 1949 (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555). Facial plausibility demands more than the mere possibility that a defendant committed misconduct and, while factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusions are not. Id. at 1949-50.

II. SUMMARY OF PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT

Plaintiff is a state prisoner currently confined at Salinas State Prison. It appears that the events alleged in his Complaint occurred at California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison in Corcoran, California ("SATF"). Plaintiff brings this action under the First Amendment for illegal retaliation by the following individuals: 1) P. Tapia, correctional officer at SATF, 2) M. White, correctional officer at SATF, 3) R. Perez, correctional officer at SATF, and 4) M. Ramirez, correctional officer at SATF.

Plaintiff asks for a declaratory judgment, $20,000 in compensatory damages, $20,000 in punitive damages, trial by jury, and costs.

Plaintiff's allegations are as follows:

In January and February 2010, Defendants Tapia and White intentionally delayed, and thereby shortened, Plaintiff's limited law library sessions even though they knew he was litigious and needed all allotted time. (Compl. at 6.) Defendants Tapia and White sometimes made excuses for the delays, but according to Plaintiff these excuses were not credible because Defendants were able to escort inmates to medical appointments in a timely manner. (Id. at 7.) Plaintiff spoke with his Men's Advisory Council ("MAC") member regarding the delays. (Id. at 8.)) In addition, on numerous occasions Defendants Tapia and White, and sometimes Perez and Ramirez, eavesdropped on Plaintiff's 602 inmate interviews and/or proceedings in his Southern District cases. (Compl. at 7.)

On March 10, 2010, Plaintiff filed a staff misconduct 602 against Defendants Tapia and White based on their delaying his access to the law library. (Compl. at 10.) (Id.) Thereafter, Defendants White, Tapia, ...


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