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Caesar v. Beard

United States District Court, E.D. California

March 17, 2015

DANNY CAESAR, Plaintiff,
v.
JEFFREY BEARD, et al., Defendants.

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS TO DISMISS CASE, WITH PREJUDICE, FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM (Doc. 11.) OBJECTIONS, IF ANY, DUE WITHIN THIRTY DAYS

GARY S. AUSTIN, Magistrate Judge.

I. BACKGROUND

Danny Caesar ("Plaintiff") is a state prisoner proceeding pro se with this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff filed the Complaint commencing this action on October 28, 2013. (Doc. 1.)

The court screened the Complaint under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A and entered an order on March 17, 2014, dismissing the Complaint for failure to state a claim, with leave to amend. (Doc. 10.) On April 17, 2014, Plaintiff filed the First Amended Complaint, which is now before the court for screening. (Doc. 11.)

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 "frivolous 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). "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).

A complaint is required to 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, 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 "are 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 "sufficient 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 FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT

Plaintiff is presently incarcerated at Kern Valley State Prison (KVSP) in Delano, California, in the custody of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR), where the events at issue in the First Amended Complaint allegedly occurred. Plaintiff names as defendants Jeffrey Beard (Director, CDCR), Ms. Lopez (Chief Medical Officer-KVSP), Ismael Patel (Primary Care Physician-KVSP), and Kongara Nanditha (Primary Care Physician-KVSP) (collectively, "Defendants"). Defendants were employed by the CDCR at KVSP at the time of the events at issue. Plaintiff's factual allegations follow.

Plaintiff has suffered from a permanent degenerative medical condition known as "frostbite residuals, " since 1976. First Amended Complaint at 3 ¶IV. Since his initial injury, Plaintiff's medical condition has worsened. Plaintiff suffers pain during prolonged standing and walking, and he was issued a wheelchair at Pelican Bay State Prison.

Since his arrival at KVSP, Plaintiff's medical treatment has changed. Officials propose to take away his wheelchair and other ADA protections necessary for daily functioning. Dr. Patel denied Plaintiff access to a neurologist, the most qualified doctor to treat his condition, claiming he can diagnose Plaintiff's diseased nervous system better than a neurologist. Dr. Patel also denied Plaintiff the use of his wheelchair.

Plaintiff filed two inmate appeals against Dr. Patel, resulting in the denial of access to a neurologist and the use of a wheelchair by Director Jeffrey Beard.

Dr. Kongara requested and obtained the approval of Chief Medical Officer Lopez to take away Plaintiff's permanent chrono for a wheelchair and various other ADA protections. Defendants all acted with negligence ...


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