BRYAN E. RANSOM, Plaintiff,
CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS AND REHABILITATION, et al., Defendants.
FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS (1) FOR SERVICE OF COGNIZABLE MEDICAL INDIFFERENCE CLAIMS IN FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT AGAINST DEFENDANTS GREAVES, BONDOC, PUNT, MADINA, SWINGLE, NEUBARTH, COREA, DHAH, and (2) DISMISSING ALL OTHER INDIVIDUALLY NAMED DEFENDANTS
MICHAEL J. SENG, Magistrate Judge.
Plaintiff Bryan E. Ransom is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action filed pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The Court screened the complaint and ordered Plaintiff to either file an amended pleading or notify the Court of willingness to proceed only on his medical indifference claims. Plaintiff filed a FIRST amended complaint which is now before the Court for screening.
The Court has screened the FIRST amended complaint and, for the reasons set forth below, recommends that it be served on Defendants Greaves, Bondoc, Punt, Madina, Swingle, Neubarth, Corea and Dhah, and that all other individually named Defendants be dismissed from this action with prejudice.
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, malicious, " or 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).
II. PLEADING STANDARD
Section 1983 "provides a cause of action for the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws of the United States." Wilder v. Virginia Hosp. Ass'n , 496 U.S. 498, 508 (1990), quoting 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Section 1983 is not itself a source of substantive rights, but merely provides a method for vindicating federal rights conferred elsewhere. Graham v. Connor , 490 U.S. 386, 393-94 (1989).
To state a claim under § 1983, a plaintiff must allege two essential elements: (1) that a right secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States was violated and (2) that the alleged violation was committed by a person acting under the color of state law. See West v. Atkins , 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988); Ketchum v. Alameda Cnty. , 811 F.2d 1243, 1245 (9th Cir. 1987).
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 , 556 U.S. 662, 678 (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." Id . 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 667-68.
III. PLAINTIFF'S ALLEGATIONS
Plaintiff complains that, during 2004-2010, while incarcerated by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation ("CDCR") at California State Prison - Corcoran ("CSP") and High Desert State Prison ("HDSP"), his Hepatitis-C (Hep-C) condition was not properly diagnosed, treated and accommodated; he was transferred without due process and in retaliation for initiating civil rights litigation; and the prison diet caused him to develop other health problems. These actions violated his First, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment rights.
Plaintiff names as Defendants (1) Greaves, CSP Medical Doctor, (2) Bondoc, CSP Medical Doctor, (3) Neubarth, CSP Medical Doctor, (4) Corea, CSP Medical Doctor, (5) Wilson, CSP Medical Doctor, (6) Savage, CSP Medical Doctor, (7) Dhah, CSP Medical Doctor, (8) Junious, CSP Institutional Classification Committee ("ICC") member, (9) Morales, CSP ICC member, (10) Rangel, CSP ICC member, (11) Martinez, CSP ICC member, (12) Salkowitz, CSP ICC member, (13), Wortman, CSP VP of Education, (14) Neri, CSP library technician, (15) Madina, HDSP Medical Doctor, (16) Punt, HDSP Medical Doctor, (17) Swingle, HDSP Medical Doctor, (18) Hubbard, CDCR Departmental Review Board ("DRB") member, (19) Kane, CDCR DRB member, (20) Rodriquez, CDCR DRB member, (21) Hoglund, CDCR DRB member, (22) Arnold, CDCR DRB member, (23) Albritton, CDCR DRB member, (24) Does 1-35.
More specifically, Plaintiff alleges that:
Medical Defendants Greaves, Bondoc, Punt, Madina and Swingle delayed diagnosis and treatment of Plaintiff's Hep-C. Medical Defendants Neubarth, Corea and Dhah refused to effectively treat his related pain. These Defendants caused unnecessary pain and irreparable liver damage.
DRB Defendants Hubbard, Kane, Rodriquez, Hoglund, Arnold and Albritton, retaliated against him for his then pending civil rights litigation against other CDCR officials, by transferring him from CSP Security Housing Unit ("SHU") to HDSP general population. DRB Defendants did not allow Plaintiff "an opportunity to voice his views to the DRB regarding the indeterminate SHU term assessment." (ECF No. 20 at 17:17-20.)
ICC Defendants Junious, Morales, Rangel, Martinez and Salkowitz, who had recommended against placing Plaintiff in the general population due to safety concerns, failed to intervene in the transfer.
COR administrative Defendants Wortman and Neri did not provide Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") accommodation of Plaintiff's hand and wrist pain. They refused to help Plaintiff prosecute pending court cases and claimed Title 15 regulations did not require such assistance.
COR food service Defendants Does 25-35 provided Plaintiff with meals high in Trans Fat Acids ("TFA"), knowing such could cause Plaintiff to develop type II diabetes and hypertension. Plaintiff developed those conditions.
Plaintiff seeks monetary damages and appointment of counsel.
The undersigned recommends service of the medical indifference claims in the FIRST amended complaint against Defendants Greaves, Bondoc, Punt, Madina, Swingle, Neubarth, Corea and Dhah, and dismissal with prejudice of all other individually named Defendants, for the reasons stated below.
A. Deliberate ...