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Crawford v. Phipps

United States District Court, E.D. California

June 16, 2014

GARY LYN CRAWFORD, Plaintiff,
v.
OFFICER PHIPPS, et al., Defendants.

ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT, WITH LEAVE TO AMEND, FOR FAILURE TO STATE A COGNIZABLE CLAIM UPON WHICH RELIEF MAY BE GRANTED UNDER SECTION 1983 [ECF No. 1]

STANLEY A. BOONE, Magistrate Judge.

Plaintiff Gary Lyn Crawford is a pretrial detainee appearing pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

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 September 24, 2013, while Plaintiff was being transported to Court by the Stanislaus County jail personnel, officer Phipps made a sudden stop on the freeway causing motorist, Guiang, to rear-end the van. Plaintiff received a one and one-half inch laceration on his forehead. Officer Ruiz and Phipps observed the laceration on Plaintiff's forehead but left the scene. Upon Plaintiff's arrival to the Stanislaus County jail, Dr. Andrew Ho applied two butterfly sutures to the laceration. It took 32 days and a CT scan and MRI before Plaintiff was prescribed Vicodin and Neurotin for his neck pain.

III.

DISCUSSION

A. Deliberate Indifference to Serious Medical Need

As a pretrial detainee, Plaintiff is protected from conditions of confinement which amount to punishment. Bell v. Wolfish , 441 U.S. 520, 535-36, 99 S.Ct. 1861 (1979); Simmons v. Navajo County, Ariz ., 609 F.3d 1011, 1017-18 (9th Cir. 2010); Clouthier v. County of Contra Costa , 591 F.3d 1232, 1244 (9th Cir. 2010). While pretrial detainees' rights are protected under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, the standard for claims brought under the Eighth Amendment has long been used to analyze pretrial detainees' conditions ...


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