United States District Court, E.D. California
BRIAN C. APPLEGATE, Plaintiff,
SAID, M.D., et al., Defendants.
ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF’S MOTION FOR INJUNCTIVE
RELIEF AND CONSOLIDATION AND GRANTING PLAINTIFF’S
MOTION FOR A COPY OF THE COMPLAINT (DOCS. 6, 8)
JENNIFER L. THURSTON, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
C. Applegate, filed a motion requesting a temporary
restraining order and/or preliminary injunction seeking to
compel prison officials and medical staff to provide him with
various forms of medical treatment and for this action to be
consolidated with a case he previously filed in this Court.
(Doc. 8.) Approximately two weeks before that, Plaintiff
filed a motion seeking a copy of the complaint, sans
exhibits, as he was unable to keep one at the time he
submitted it for filing. (Doc. 6.) For the reasons discussed
below, Plaintiff’s request for a temporary restraining
order/injunctive relief is DENIED, his request for
consolidation is DENIED, and his request for copies of the
Complaint is GRANTED.
plaintiff seeking a preliminary injunction must establish
that he is likely to succeed on the merits, that he is likely
to suffer irreparable harm in the absence of preliminary
relief, that the balance of equities tips in his favor, and
that an injunction is in the public interest."
Winter v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc.,
555 U.S. 7, 20 (2008) (citations omitted). “A
preliminary injunction is an extraordinary remedy never
awarded as a matter of right. In each case, courts must
balance the competing claims of injury and must consider the
effect on each party of the granting or withholding of the
requested relief. In exercising their sound discretion,
courts of equity should pay particular regard for the public
consequences in employing the extraordinary remedy of
injunction." Id., at 24 (citations and
quotations omitted). An injunction may only be awarded upon a
clear showing that the plaintiff is entitled to such relief.
Id., at 22.
for prospective relief are further limited by 18 U.S.C. Â§
3626 (a)(1)(A) of the Prison Litigation Reform Act, which
requires that the Court find the “relief [sought] is
narrowly drawn, extends no further necessary to correct the
violation of the Federal right, and is the least intrusive
means necessary to correct the violation of the Federal
inmate seeking an injunction on the ground that there is a
contemporary violation of a nature likely to continue, must
adequately plead such a violation; . . ." Farmer v.
Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 845-46 (1994) (citations and
quotations omitted). It is subsequent to screening, such as
in efforts to survive summary judgment, that a plaintiff
“must come forward with evidence from which it can be
inferred that the defendant-officials were at the time suit
was filed, and are at the time of summary judgment, knowingly
and unreasonably disregarding an objectively intolerable risk
of harm, and that they will continue to do so; and finally to
establish eligibility for an injunction, the inmate must
demonstrate the continuance of that disregard during the
remainder of the litigation and into the future."
Id., at 845-46. However, at the pleading stage, the
Court is not in a position to determine questions of a
claim's merits which require submission of evidence as
opposed to merely determining whether a claim has been
stated. Barrett v. Belleque, 544 F.3d 1060 (9th Cir.
Complaint is in line for screening. At this point, the Court
has not ascertained that he has stated any cognizable claims,
let alone that he is entitled to the relief he requests.
However, even after screening, assuming that Plaintiff states
at least one cognizable claim, his request for a temporary
restraining order/injunctive relief cannot be adequately
addressed until evidence is submitted. Thus, his request must
be denied at this time.
same motion, Plaintiff states that he consents to
consolidation of this action with Applegate v. Koker, et
al., Case No. 1:15-cv-01054-MJS (PC). Plaintiff
indicates that the actions involve “similar state actor
misconduct” and “similar underlying medical
ailments” from which Plaintiff suffers and for which he
is seeking treatment. (Doc. 8.) However, the actions differ
because in this action he names different defendants and he
claims the acts occurred at a different state prison.
Rule of Civil Procedure 42(a) provides that "[i]f
actions before the court involve a common question of law or
fact, " the court may consolidate the actions. District
courts have broad discretion to grant or deny consolidation.
Pierce v. Cnty. of Orange, 526 F.3d 1190, 1203 (9th
Cir. 2008); see also In re Adams Apples, Inc., 829
F.2d 1484, 1487 (9th Cir. 1987). In considering whether to
consolidate cases, the court "weighs the interest of
judicial convenience against the potential for delay,
confusion and prejudice caused by consolidation."
S.W. Marine Inc. v. Triple A Mach. Shop, 720 F.Supp.
805, 807 (N.D. Cal. 1989).
instance, the only common thread between Plaintiff’s
cases is his underlying medical condition. The actions do not
share commonality of defendant actors, location, nor factual
allegations. While both actions, presumably involve
allegations of deliberate indifference to Plaintiff’s
medical needs under the Eighth Amendment, this is not enough
to warrant consolidation. Further, the defendants in
Plaintiff’s other case have filed a motion for summary
judgment based on Plaintiff’s alleged failure to
exhaust available administrative remedies prior to filing
suit, while this action has yet to be screened. Procedurally,
consolidation is not feasible. Plaintiff provides no basis
upon which to find a benefit to consolidation of his two
actions and the Court finds none. Thus, consolidation of this
case with 1:15-cv-01054-MJS is properly denied.
Copies of Pleading
Plaintiff’s other motion, he requests a copy of the
Complaint he filed in this action, but not the voluminous
exhibits attached thereto -- i.e. only the first 26 pages of
Doc. 1. (Doc. 6.)
asserts that he was unable to keep a copy for his records due
to fear of retaliation. Though it is not the Court’s
practice to provide free copies of filings by a party, the
Court will make an exception this one time. In the
future, if Plaintiff wants a copy of a documents from the