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Anthoney Lynch v. Warden of Pleasant Valley State Prison

April 22, 2013

ANTHONEY LYNCH,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
WARDEN OF PLEASANT VALLEY STATE PRISON, ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gary S. Austin United States Magistrate Judge

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS, RECOMMENDING THAT THIS CASE BE DISMISSED, WITH PREJUDICE, FOR FAIILURE TO STATE A CLAIM UPON WHICH RELIEF MAY BE GRANTED (Doc. 38.) OBJECTIONS, IF ANY, DUE IN THIRTY DAYS

I. BACKGROUND

Anthoney Lynch ("Plaintiff") is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis with this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. On December 2, 2009, Plaintiff filed the Complaint commencing this action. (Doc. 1.) On April 14, 2011, the Court dismissed the Complaint for failure to state a claim, with leave to amend. (Doc. 13.) On October 12, 2011, Plaintiff and two co-plaintiffs, Sterling Thibodeaux and Willie Jones, filed the First Amended Complaint. (Doc. 22.) On May 1, 2012, the Court severed the claims of the three plaintiffs and dismissed the First Amended Complaint for failure to state a claim, with leave for the three plaintiffs to each file a Second Amended Complaint in their own cases. (Doc. 28.) Plaintiff now proceeds as the sole plaintiff in this action. On October 15, 2012, Plaintiff filed the Second Amended Complaint, which is now before the Court for screening. (Doc. 38.)

II. 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 Afrivolous 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). ANotwithstanding 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 is required to contain Aa 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 A[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice.@ Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009) (citing Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 127 S.Ct. 1955 (2007)). While a plaintiff=s allegations are taken as true, courts Aare 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). Plaintiff must set forth Asufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to >state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.=@ Iqbal 556 U.S. at 678. While factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusions are not. Id.

To state a viable claim for relief, Plaintiff must set forth sufficient factual allegations to state a plausible claim for relief. Id. at 678-79; 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. Id.

III. SUMMARY OF SECOND AMENDED COMPLAINT

Plaintiff is presently incarcerated at California State Prison-Los Angeles County in Lancaster, California. The events at issue in the Second Amended Complaint occurred at Pleasant Valley State Prison (PVSP) in Coalinga, California, when Plaintiff was incarcerated there. Plaintiff names as defendants Gail Lewis (Warden, PVSP), Doe #1 (Assistant Warden, PVSP), Doe #2 (Chief Medical Officer, PVSP), Doe #3 (Regional Medical Director, PVSP), Doe #4 (Secretary of Corrections, PVSP), and the City of Coalinga. Plaintiff factual allegations follow.

Plaintiff was transferred to PVSP in March 2000. Defendants knew, sometime before his arrival, about the outbreak of the disease known as Valley Fever among inmates and staff at PVSP where the disease was prevalent, yet they continued to house inmates, including Plaintiff, without telling them they were being exposed to Valley Fever, and failed to monitor their health. Plaintiff was at PVSP for three years and his health was never monitored for Valley Fever. Plaintiff's lack of knowledge that he was being exposed to Valley Fever impeded him from filing an inmate grievance or § 1983 complaint about these conditions of his confinement. Plaintiff contracted Valley Fever upon his arrival at PVSP. Due to the delay in his diagnosis and treatment, Plaintiff suffered multiple surgeries, unnecessary pain, mental suffering, headaches, joint pain, chest pain, loss of appetite, and months of hospitalization.

Plaintiff requests monetary damages as relief.

IV. PLAINTIFF'S CLAIMS

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 ...


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