United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT WITH LEAVE TO AMEND (DOC.
JENNIFER L. THURSTON, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
asserts claims under the Eighth Amendment for deliberate
indifference based on his inability to obtain medical care
for his back condition while he was housed at CSP-Cor. Since
Plaintiff fails to state any cognizable claims, but may be
able to cure the defects in his pleading, the Complaint is
dismissed with leave to amend.
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,
malicious, 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);
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(i)-(iii). If an action is
dismissed on one of these three bases, a strike is imposed
per 28 U.S.C. § 1915(g). An inmate who has had three or
more prior actions or appeals dismissed as frivolous,
malicious, or for failure to state a claim upon which relief
may be granted, and has not alleged imminent danger of
serious physical injury does not qualify to proceed in
forma pauperis. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(g);
Richey v. Dahne, 807 F.3d 1201, 1208 (9th Cir.
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).
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 the color of state law. See West v.
Atkins, 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988); Ketchum v. Alameda
Cnty., 811 F.2d 1243, 1245 (9th Cir. 1987).
currently housed at Salinas Valley State Prison, Plaintiff
complains of acts that occurred while he was housed at
CSP-Cor. He names Dr. M. Mays, Dr. J. Wang, Dr. K. Kumar
(CMO), Warden D. Davey, and Does 1-5 and seeks monetary
damages for deliberate indifference to his serious medical
needs in violation of the Eighth Amendment.
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)
8(a)'s simplified pleading standard applies to all civil
actions, with limited exceptions, ” none of which
applies to section 1983 actions. Swierkiewicz v. Sorema
N. A., 534 U.S. 506, 512 (2002); Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 8(a).
A complaint must contain “a short and plain statement
of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief .
. . .” Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 8(a). “Such a statement
must simply give the defendant fair notice of what the
plaintiff's claim is and the grounds upon which it
rests.” Swierkiewicz, 534 U.S. at 512.
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), quoting
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 that is
plausible on its face.'” Iqbal, 556 U.S.
at 678, quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. Factual
allegations are accepted as true, but legal conclusions are
not. Iqbal. at 678; see also Moss v. U.S. Secret
Service, 572 F.3d 962, 969 (9th Cir. 2009);
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556-557.
“plaintiffs [now] face a higher burden of pleadings
facts . . ., ” Al-Kidd v. Ashcroft, 580 F.3d
949, 977 (9th Cir. 2009), the pleadings of pro se
prisoners are still construed liberally and are afforded the
benefit of any doubt. Blaisdell v. Frappiea, 729
F.3d 1237, 1241 (9th Cir. 2013); Hebbe v. Pliler,
627 F.3d 338, 342 (9th Cir. 2010). However, “the
liberal pleading standard . . . applies only to a
plaintiff's factual allegations, ” Neitze v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 330 n.9 (1989), “a liberal
interpretation of a civil rights complaint may not supply
essential elements of the claim that were not initially pled,
” Bruns v. Nat'l Credit Union Admin., 122
F.3d 1251, 1257 (9th Cir. 1997) quoting Ivey v. Bd. of
Regents, 673 F.2d 266, 268 (9th Cir. 1982), and 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). 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, 129 S.Ct. at 1949;
Moss, 572 F.3d at 969. Plaintiff must identify
specific facts supporting the existence of substantively
plausible claims for relief. Johnson v. City of
Shelby, __ U.S. __, __, 135 S.Ct. 346, 347 (2014) (per
curiam) (citation omitted).
chooses to file a first amended complaint, is should be
concise. He should merely state which of his constitutional
rights he feels were violated by each Defendant and what
happened. He need not and should not state catch-phrases that
amount to nothing more than legal conclusions.
state a claim using 42 U.S.C. § 1983 the complaint must
demonstrate an actual connection or link between the actions
of the defendants and the deprivation alleged to have been
suffered by Plaintiff. See Monell v. Department of Social
Services, 436 U.S. 658 (1978); Rizzo v. Goode,
423 U.S. 362 (1976). Section 1983 provides a mechanism to
vindicate violations of Plaintiff's constitutional or
other federal rights by persons acting under color of state
law. Nurre v. Whitehead, 580 F.3d 1087, 1092 (9th
Cir 2009); Long v. County of Los Angeles, 442 F.3d
1178, 1185 (9th Cir. 2006); Jones, 297 F.3d at 934.
“Section 1983 is not itself a source of substantive
rights, but merely provides a method for vindicating federal
rights elsewhere conferred.” Crowley v. Nevada ex
rel. Nevada Sec'y of State, 678 F.3d 730, 734 (9th
Cir. 2012) (citing Graham v. Connor, 490 U.S. 386,
393-94 (1989)) (internal quotation marks omitted). To
sufficiently demonstrate a state a link between each
defendant's actions or omissions and a violation of his
federal rights claim, Plaintiff must allege facts
demonstrating this. Lemire v. California Dep't of
Corr. and Rehab., 726 F.3d 1062, 1074-75 (9th Cir.
2013); Starr v. Baca, 652 F.3d 1202, 1205-08 (9th
Ninth Circuit has held that “[a] person
‘subjects' another to the deprivation of a
constitutional right, within the meaning of section 1983, if
he does an affirmative act, participates in another's
affirmative acts or omits to perform an act which he is
legally required to do that causes the deprivation of which
complaint is made.” Johnson v. Duffy, 588 F.2d
740, 743 (9th Cir. 1978). Under section 1983, Plaintiff must
demonstrate that each defendant personally participated in
the deprivation of his rights, Jones v. Williams,
297 F.3d 930, 934 (9th Cir. 2002), and must clearly show
which Defendant(s) he feels are responsible for each
violation of his constitutional rights and the factual basis
for each violation to put each Defendant on notice of
Plaintiff's claims against him or her. See Austin v.
Terhune, 367 F.3d 1167, 1171 (9th Cir. 2004).