United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER AND FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
ALLISON CLAIRE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
a state prisoner proceeding pro se, seeks relief pursuant to
42 U.S.C. § 1983 and state law and has requested leave
to proceed in forma pauperis pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
1915. This proceeding was referred to this court by Local
Rule 302 pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1).
Application to Proceed In Forma Pauperis
has submitted a declaration that makes the showing required
by 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a). ECF No. 2. However, the court
will not assess a filing fee at this time. Instead, the
undersigned will recommend summary dismissal of the
Statutory Screening of Prisoner Complaints
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. §
“is [legally] frivolous where it lacks an arguable
basis either in law or in fact.” Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989); Franklin v.
Murphy, 745 F.2d 1221, 1227-28 (9th Cir. 1984).
“[A] judge may dismiss [in forma pauperis] claims which
are based on indisputably meritless legal theories or whose
factual contentions are clearly baseless.” Jackson
v. Arizona, 885 F.2d 639, 640 (9th Cir. 1989) (citation
and internal quotations omitted), superseded by statute
on other grounds as stated in Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d
1122, 1130 (9th Cir. 2000); Neitzke, 490 U.S. at
327. The critical inquiry is whether a constitutional claim,
however inartfully pleaded, has an arguable legal and factual
Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2) requires only ‘a short
and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is
entitled to relief, ’ in order to ‘give the
defendant fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the
grounds upon which it rests.’” Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (alteration
in original) (quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41,
47 (1957)). However, in order to survive dismissal for
failure to state a claim, a complaint must contain more than
“a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of
action;” it must contain factual allegations sufficient
“to raise a right to relief above the speculative
level.” Id. (citations omitted). “[T]he
pleading must contain something more . . . than . . . a
statement of facts that merely creates a suspicion [of] a
legally cognizable right of action.” Id.
(alteration in original) (quoting 5 Charles Alan Wright &
Arthur R. Miller, Federal Practice and Procedure
' 1216 (3d ed. 2004)).
complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as
true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on
its face.’” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S.
662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp., 550 U.S.
at 570). “A claim has facial plausibility when the
plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to
draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the misconduct alleged.” Id. (citing
Bell Atl. Corp., 550 U.S. at 556). In reviewing a
complaint under this standard, the court must accept as true
the allegations of the complaint in question, Hospital
Bldg. Co. v. Rex Hosp. Trs., 425 U.S. 738, 740 (1976),
as well as construe the pleading in the light most favorable
to the plaintiff and resolve all doubts in the
plaintiff’s favor, Jenkins v. McKeithen, 395
U.S. 411, 421 (1969).
upon the contents of a letter dated May 16, 2016, plaintiff
alleges that his privacy rights have been violated as the
result of the theft of an unencrypted, password-protected
laptop from the personal vehicle of a California Correctional
Health Care Services (CCHCS) employee on February 25, 2016.
ECF No. 1 at 3-4, 6. The notification stated as follows:
We do not know if any sensitive information was contained in
the laptop. To the extent any sensitive information may have
been contained in the laptop, we do not know if the
information included any of your information. If your
information was included, the nature of the information may
have included confidential medical, mental health, and
custodial information. To the extent any sensitive
information may have been contained in the laptop, we
estimate that it would have been limited to information
related to your custody and care, if any, between 1996 and
Id. at 6.
alleges that this potential breach violated his rights under
California’s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act
(CMIA), Cal. Civ. Code §§ 56 et seq., and
California Health and Safety Code § 1280.15 and
constituted a violation of his Fourth Amendment privacy
rights. Id. at 3-4. Plaintiff names only CCHCS and
the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
(CDCR) as defendants. Id. at 2. Plaintiff seeks $25,
000 in damages. Id. at 7. Plaintiff avers that no
prison administrative remedy was “available” to
him to grieve this matter because it occurred outside the
prison. Id. at 3-4; se ...