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Koch v. Young

United States District Court, E.D. California

April 23, 2017

ROLAND THOMAS KOCH, Plaintiff,
v.
IAN YOUNG, Defendant.

          ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT WITH LEAVE TO AMEND (ECF No. 1)

          Michael J. Seng UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         Plaintiff is a civil detainee proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. His complaint is before the Court for screening. (ECF No. 1.) He has declined Magistrate Judge jurisdiction. (ECF No. 6.) No other parties have appeared.

         I. Screening Requirement

         The in forma pauperis statute provides, “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 on which relief may be granted.” 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii).

         II. Pleading Standard

         Section 1983 “provides a cause of action for the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws of the United States.” Wilder v. Virginia Hosp. Ass'n, 496 U.S. 498, 508 (1990) (quoting 42 U.S.C. § 1983). Section 1983 is not itself a source of substantive rights, but merely provides a method for vindicating federal rights conferred elsewhere. Graham v. Connor, 490 U.S. 386, 393-94 (1989).

         To state a claim under § 1983, a plaintiff must allege two essential elements: (1) that a right secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States was violated and (2) that the alleged violation was committed by a person acting under color of state law. See West v. Atkins, 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988); Ketchum v. Alameda Cty., 811 F.2d 1243, 1245 (9th Cir. 1987).

         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)). Plaintiff must set forth “sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.” Id. Facial plausibility demands more than the mere possibility that a defendant committed misconduct and, while factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusions are not. Iqbal, at 677-78.

         III. Plaintiff's Allegations

         Plaintiff is detained at Coalinga State Hospital (“CSH”). He names Unit Supervisor Ian Young, presumably a CSH employee, as the sole defendant.

         Plaintiff's allegations may be summarized essentially as follows:

         On February 28, 2017, Defendant Young used “illegal physical force” when he “twisted” Plaintiff's arms behind Plaintiff's back. Plaintiff claims that Defendant Young transported Plaintiff to a room Plaintiff “did not want to be in, ” and that Defendant is “a threat” to Plaintiff. Plaintiff states that he told Defendant to call officers if he believed Plaintiff was breaking any rule by sitting on the floor and reading a book. Plaintiff claims he spoke to Defendant in a “calm, cool, collected conversational voice/tone.” Plaintiff makes no explicit mention of any physical injury in his complaint. Plaintiff also notes that a similar incident occurred between him and Defendant on July 26, 2014, but he provides no further details about that event.

         Plaintiff seeks injunctive relief, asking the Court to “remove” Defendant Young from having “access” to Plaintiff. Plaintiff also asks the Court to arrest Defendant Young, claiming that “the officers and administration here cannot or will not restrain him.”

         IV. ...


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