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Franklin v. Lewis

United States District Court, N.D. California

August 28, 2014

JEFFREY FRANKLIN, Plaintiff,
v.
G. D. LEWIS, et al., Defendants.

ORDER SCREENING COMPLAINT PURSUANT TO 28 U.S.C. § 1915A; AND SETTING BRIEFING SCHEDULE

YVONNE GONZALEZ ROGERS, District Judge.

Plaintiff, a state prisoner currently incarcerated at the California Correctional Institution, filed this action as a civil action in the Del Norte County Superior Court, Case No. CVUJ13-1181, alleging constitutional violations that occurred during his previous incarceration at Pelican Bay State Prison ("PBSP") from 2011 through 2012. He seeks monetary damages.

Defendants, who are represented by the State Attorney General's Office, [1] removed the action to this Court pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1441(b). The Court has previously grant their request to screen the complaint under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Therefore, the Court now conducts its initial review of the complaint, and directs the parties to abide by the briefing schedule outlined below.

DISCUSSION

I. Standard of Review

A federal court must engage in a preliminary screening of any case in which a prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). The court must identify any cognizable claims, and dismiss any claims which are frivolous, malicious, fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seek monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. See 28 U.S.C. §1915A(b)(1), (2).

To state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must allege two elements: (1) that a right secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States was violated and (2) that the violation was committed by a person acting under the color of state law. See West v. Atkins, 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988).

II. Federal Legal Claims

In his complaint, Plaintiff alleges multiple incidents involving various PBSP prison officials, who are named as Defendants in this action. Specifically, the Court finds that Plaintiff has alleged the following cognizable claims against the following named Defendants:

(1) a violation of the First Amendment based on Plaintiff's allegations that Defendants, on various occasions:

(a) improperly failed to deliver his "privileged" incoming and outgoing mail "on or about the 30th day of September 2011 and on or about the 5th day of October 2011 up to and including the 26th day of July 2012"; and

(b) participated in "a series of events that led to their witholding [sic], seizing, [and] storing [his] privileged correspondences of September 30, 2011 and October 5, 2011";

(2) similar violations of the First Amendment against those Defendants who reviewed Plaintiff's prison grievances and/or 602 inmate appeals and did not remedy the aforementioned First Amendment violations; and

(3) a retaliation claim against Defendants for retaliating against Plaintiff for filing prison grievances relating to the aforementioned First ...


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