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Simons v. Sundaram

United States District Court, E.D. California

March 15, 2017

MICHAEL SIMONS, Plaintiff,
v.
J. SUNDARAM, et al., Defendants.

          SCREENING ORDER ORDER DISMISSING FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM, WITH LEAVE TO AMEND THIRTY-DAY DEADLINE FOR PLAINTIFF TO FILE SECOND AMENDED COMPLAINT ORDER FOR CLERK TO SEND PLAINTIFF A CIVIL COMPLAINT FORM

          GARY S. AUSTIN, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         I. BACKGROUND

         Michael Simons (“Plaintiff”) is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis with this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff filed the Complaint commencing this action on January 26, 2015. (ECF No. 1.)

         On February 13, 2015, Plaintiff consented to Magistrate Judge jurisdiction in this action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c), and no other parties have made an appearance. (ECF No. 6.) Therefore, pursuant to Appendix A(k)(4) of the Local Rules of the Eastern District of California, the undersigned shall conduct any and all proceedings in the case until such time as reassignment to a District Judge is required. Local Rule Appendix A(k)(3).

         The court screened the Complaint and issued an order on November 25, 2015, finding that Plaintiff stated cognizable medical claims against defendants Sundaram and Ugueze, in violation of the Eighth Amendment. (ECF No. 10.) Plaintiff was granted thirty days in which to either: (1) file a First Amended Complaint; or (2) notify the Court that he is willing to proceed only with the claims found cognizable by the Court. (Id.)

         On December 31, 2015, Plaintiff filed both a First Amended Complaint and a notice that he is willing to proceed only with the cognizable claims. (ECF Nos. 11, 12.) On October 21, 2016, the court issued an order requesting clarification from Plaintiff whether (1) he intends to proceed only against defendants Sundaram and Ugueze on the medical claims found cognizable by the Court in the original Complaint filed on January 26, 2015 (ECF No. 1); or (2) he intends to proceed with the First Amended Complaint filed on December 21, 2015. (ECF No. 14.) On March 3, 2017, Plaintiff filed a response to the order, stating, “I would like to go forward with the case that includes Majid Rahimfar.” (ECF No. 19.) The First Amended Complaint names Majid Rahimfar as a defendant. Therefore, Plaintiff has clarified that he wishes to proceed with the First Amended Complaint which is now before the court for screening. (ECF No. 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 (2009) (citing Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (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). To state a viable claim, 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 678-79; Moss v. U.S. Secret Service, 572 F.3d 962, 969 (9th Cir. 2009). While factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusions are not. Id. The mere possibility of misconduct falls short of meeting this plausibility standard. Id.

         III. SUMMARY OF FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT

         Plaintiff is presently incarcerated at the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility (SATF) in Corcoran, California, where the events at issue allegedly occurred. Plaintiff names as defendants Dr. J. Sundaram (primary care physician), Dr. Majid Rahimifar (neurosurgeon), and Chief Medical Executive G. Ugueze (collectively, “Defendants”).

Plaintiff's allegations follow, in their entirety.
J. Sundaram failed to speed up the process and treat me urgently. When Rahimifar performed my surgery, he failed to see me in an urgent manner. J. Sundaram also failed to see my disposition (sic) on the surgeons, failing to do all within his power to treat me and get a second opinion within a timely manner. Rahimifar failed to see me after the surgery in any manner, and released. Also failed post-aftercare to see me to find out any complications I may have - and developed complicated malfunctions due to neglect. G. Ugueze failed to step in any way to speed up my medical process/emergency. He ignored all my pleas for help in the 602 appeals. Delaying my possible treatments in paralysis/vocal ...

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