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Woodard v. Wang

United States District Court, E.D. California

March 20, 2017

DR. WANG, Defendant.


         Plaintiff Adrian Alexander Woodard is a state prisoner appearing pro se in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff has consented to magistrate jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c)(1).[1] Currently before the Court is Plaintiff's complaint, filed on July 28, 2016. (ECF No. 1.)



         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 on which relief may be granted, ” or that “seek[] monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief.” 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).

         A complaint must 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)). Moreover, Plaintiff must demonstrate that each defendant personally participated in the deprivation of Plaintiff's rights. Jones v. Williams, 297 F.3d 930, 934 (9th Cir. 2002).

         Prisoners proceeding pro se in civil rights actions are entitled to have their pleadings liberally construed and to have any doubt resolved in their favor. Wilhelm v. Rotman, 680 F.3d 1113, 1121 (9th Cir. 2012) (citations omitted). To survive screening, Plaintiff's claims must be facially plausible, which requires sufficient factual detail to allow the Court to reasonably infer that each named defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678-79; Moss v. U.S. Secret Service, 572 F.3d 962, 969 (9th Cir. 2009). The “sheer possibility that a defendant has acted unlawfully” is not sufficient, and “facts that are ‘merely consistent with' a defendant's liability” fall short of satisfying the plausibility standard. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678; Moss, 572 F.3d at 969.



         Plaintiff is a state inmate in the custody of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (“CDCR”) at the Corcoran State Prison (“CSP”), which is where the events at issue here occurred. Plaintiff names Dr. Wang, a doctor at CSP, as Defendant (“Defendant Wang”). Plaintiff alleges as follows: on September 11, 2015, Plaintiff fell down the stairs and twisted his right ankle during an adverse cell move.

         Plaintiff was seen by Nurse Serna at the facility medical clinic and a few hours later was escorted via wheelchair to the institutional hospital (“ACH”) and seen by Nurse E. Crawford. After consultation with Defendant Wang, it was determined that Plaintiff would be returned to his housing unit, he was administered Ibuprofen, and he was discharged.

         On September 12, 2015, Plaintiff returned to ACH for a follow-up with Defendant Wang, during which Plaintiff repetitiously complained about pain, loss of sleep, and gravid swelling. Defendant Wang stated, “[t]here is nothing I can do for you beside prescribe pain medication.” Plaintiff responded, “[t]he medicine is not relieving my pain.” Defendant Wang then said, “[g]rown man [sic] handle pain.” Plaintiff was ordered to leave and was returned back to his housing unit where he endured severe pain, excessive swelling, and loss of sleep. Plaintiff complained to medical staff, but was denied treatment due to Defendant Wang's orders.

         On September 13, 2015, Plaintiff was seen by R.N. Sparlin at ACH and Plaintiff expressed his pain and requested treatment for his ankle. Plaintiff asked to be sent to a hospital and stated that he had not slept in over 2 days and that the Ibuprofen was not relieving his pain and suffering. Plaintiff was sent back to his housing unit.

         On September 14, 2015, Plaintiff had x-rays taken at ACH and Dr. Shultz's report indicates that there was a comminuted fracture of the distal fibula. That same day, Plaintiff was sent to Mercy Hospital in Bakersfield for treatment. When Plaintiff arrived there, Plaintiff told Dr. Ahmed that the injury occurred on September 11, 2015.[2] Dr. Ahmed stated, “I wonder why it took so long to send you, because now the swelling is so bad I cannot set the bone.” Plaintiff replied, “I don't know.” Plaintiff was admitted to the hospital and received treatment for the excessive swelling and in the days that followed received a cast for his ankle.

         Plaintiff alleges an Eighth Amendment claim for deliberate indifference to serious medical needs against Defendant Wang. He also alleges a state law claim for a violation of Section 845.6 of the California Government Code against Defendant Wang. He further alleges that the failure to immediately treat his ankle condition has resulted in a permanent limp and chronic pain which seriously affect his activities in prison. ...

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