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Hancock v. Leong

United States District Court, E.D. California

April 9, 2014

JAMES HANCOCK, Plaintiff,
v.
A. LEONG, et al., Defendants.

ORDER DISMISSING CERTAIN DEFENDANTS FROM ACTION FOR FAILURE TO STATE A COGNIZABLE CLAIM FOR RELIEF [ECF No. 7]

STANLEY A. BOONE, Magistrate Judge.

Plaintiff James Hancock is appearing pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c), Plaintiff consented to the jurisdiction of the United States Magistrate Judge on March 25, 2013. Local Rule 302.

On January 14, 2014, the Court screened Plaintiff's initial complaint and granted Plaintiff the option of either filing an amended complaint or willingness to proceed only on the claims found to be cognizable.

Now pending before the Court is Plaintiff's first amended complaint, filed February 18, 2014. (ECF No. 7.)

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 "fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted, " or that "seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief." 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).

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 demonstrate that each named defendant personally participated in the deprivation of his rights. Iqbal , 556 U.S. at 676-677; Simmons v. Navajo County, Ariz. , 609 F.3d 1011, 1020-1021 (9th Cir. 2010).

Prisoners proceeding pro se in civil rights actions are still entitled to have their pleadings liberally construed and to have any doubt resolved in their favor, but the pleading standard is now higher, Wilhelm v. Rotman , 680 F.3d 1113, 1121 (9th Cir. 2012) (citations omitted), and to survive screening, Plaintiff's claims must be facially plausible, which requires sufficient factual detail to allow the Court to reasonably infer that each named defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged. Iqbal , 556 U.S. at 678-79; Moss v. U.S. Secret Serv. , 572 F.3d 962, 969 (9th Cir. 2009). The "sheer possibility that a defendant has acted unlawfully" is not sufficient, and "facts that are merely consistent with' a defendant's liability" falls short of satisfying the plausibility standard. Iqbal , 556 U.S. at 678; Moss , 572 F.3d at 969.

II.

COMPLAINT ALLEGATIONS

On April 15, 2011, Plaintiff was confined and deprived of his liberty while in the custody of North Kern State Prison (NKSP). At no time prior to this date did Plaintiff suffer from any back, spine, or other injuries which would require medical designation, including permanent wheelchair status.

On April 15, 2011, at approximately 1030 hours, Plaintiff strained or injured his back while jogging on the prison's exercise yard. Plaintiff sought medical assistance from Registered Nurse (RN) Sagisi who informed Plaintiff that would speak with the doctor to arrange a medical appointment at the clinic to discuss possible treatments with the doctor. Plaintiff then returned to his cell to lie down as instructed by RN Sagisi.

On April 16, 2011, Plaintiff discovered that to even attempt to move caused him extreme pain in his back area, and any movement caused excruciating pain. At approximately 1000 hours, because of his pain, Plaintiff requested his cellmate to inform Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) Parker, who was dispensing medication in the housing unit, to inform Parker of his condition. Parker stated that "[n]o medication will be ordered for ...


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