United States District Court, N.D. California
ORDER OF SERVICE
William Alsup United States District Judge
a California prisoner at Pelican Bay State Prison, filed this
civil rights case under 42 U.S.C. 1983 against officials at
Salinas Valley State Prison (“SVSP”), where
plaintiff was formerly housed. He is granted leave to proceed
in forma pauperis in a separate order. For the reasons
discussed below, the complaint is ordered served upon
Standard of Review
courts must engage in a preliminary screening of cases in
which prisoners seek redress from a governmental entity or
officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C.
1915A(a). In its review the court must identify any
cognizable claims, and dismiss any claims which are
frivolous, malicious, fail to state a claim upon which relief
may be granted, or seek monetary relief from a defendant who
is immune from such relief. Id. at 1915A(b)(1), (2).
Pro se pleadings must be liberally construed. Balistreri
v. Pacifica Police Dep't, 901 F.2d 696, 699 (9th
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." "Specific facts are not
necessary; the statement need only '"give the
defendant fair notice of what the . . . . claim is and the
grounds upon which it rests."'" Erickson v.
Pardus, 127 S.Ct. 2197, 2200 (2007) (citations omitted).
Although in order to state a claim a complaint “does
not need detailed factual allegations, . . . a
plaintiff's obligation to provide the 'grounds of his
'entitle[ment] to relief' requires more than labels
and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements
of a cause of action will not do. . . . Factual allegations
must be enough to raise a right to relief above the
speculative level." Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 1964-65 (2007) (citations
omitted). A complaint must proffer "enough facts to
state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face."
Id. at 1974.
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. 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 deprivation was committed by a person
acting under the color of state law. West v. Atkins,
487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988).
claims that defendant Aboytes searched his cell without a
slip and accused him of being involved in a riot. Aboytes
issued him a “Rules Violation Report” that
included a term of five months in administrative segregation.
Defendant Salazar conducted the disciplinary hearing at which
he told plaintiff to plead guilty to the charges of
participating in a riot and would not allow him to call a
witness. Defendant Walker and Binkele reviewed the consequent
placement of plaintiff in administrative segregation and
upheld it. Defendant Burgh extended his administrative
segregation stay. Defendant Hatton denied his administrative
grievance complaining about administrative segregation. At
the final level of administrative review, prison officials
ordered plaintiff's Rules Violations Report to be
reissued and reheard because of due process violations. At
the rehearing plaintiff was found not guilty of violating
prison rules and he was returned to ordinary housing. He
spent approximately one year in administrative segregation.
then filed administrative grievances complaining about lost
wages and his transfer to another prison away from his
family. Defendants Burgh, Hatton, Lee and Voong denied
grievances seeking request for transfer.
claims that there was no evidence that he participated in a
riot, and that defendants were retaliating against him for
filing administrative grievances when he was at Corcoran
State Prison. When liberally construed, his complaint states
cognizable claims against defendants Aboytes, Hatton, Burgh,
Walker, Binkele and Salazar for the violation of his right to
due process insofar as he was placed in segregation for a
lengthy period without adequate procedural protections or
evidentiary support, and for a violation of his First
Amendment rights insofar as he was segregated in retaliation
for filing administrative grievances.
allegations against Defendants Burgh, Hatton, Lee and Voong
for denying his grievances regarding a transfer and lost
wages do not state a cognizable claim for relief because the
denial of an administrative grievance does not implicate his
constitutional rights. See Ramirez v. Galaza, 334
F.3d 850, 860 (9th Cir. 2003) (there is no constitutional
right to a prison administrative appeal or grievance system).
only allegation against defendant Grounds is that as the
Warden of SVSP he is “legally responsible” for
the actions of the other prison officials who violated
plaintiff's constitutional rights. See Taylor v.
List, 880 F.2d 1040, 1045 ...