United States District Court, C.D. California, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER DISMISSING FIRST AMENDED
COMPLAINT WITH LEAVE TO AMEND
DOUGLAS F. McCORMICK, United States Magistrate Judge.
2016, Larry Gene Oswald, Jr. (“Plaintiff”), a
pretrial detainee at the West Valley Detention Center
(“WVDC”) in Rancho Cucamonga, California, filed
this pro se civil rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
See Dkt. 1 (“Complaint”). The Complaint
named Jeffery Haga, WVDC's Chief Medical Officer, as the
sole defendant in both his individual and official capacity.
See id. at 3. The Court granted Plaintiff's
request for leave to proceed in forma pauperis. See
Dkt. 4. After he was served, see Dkt. 22, Dr. Haga
moved to dismiss the Complaint. See Dkt. 26. Near
the same time, Plaintiff filed a Motion for Leave to File an
Amended Complaint, which was essentially a proposed First
Amended Complaint (“FAC”). See Dkt. 32.
The Court granted Plaintiff's motion and accepted the
proposed FAC as the operative complaint in the case.
See Dkt. 33.
accordance with 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2) and 1915A,
the Court must screen the FAC for purposes of determining
whether the action is frivolous or malicious; or fails to
state a claim on which relief might be granted; or seeks
monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such
names as defendants: (1) Dr. Haga, in his individual and
official capacity; (2) Dr. Wendalee Rivera Pacheco, in her
individual and official capacity; (3) the San Bernardino
County Sheriff's Department; and (4) various John and
Jane Does. See FAC at 3-4.
to the SAC, WVDC contracts with Arrowhead Medical Center in
Colton, California to provide medical services to its inmates
and detainees. See id. at 5.
has Hepatitis C and “other medical issues” that
Dr. Haga has been aware of since Plaintiff's booking at
WVDC on July 15, 2014, because Plaintiff told a nurse about
his “health issues” during intake. See
id. On August 2, 2014, Plaintiff signed a form to
release his medical records to WVDC medical staff and gave
them information for both of his treating doctors. See
id. On October 27, 2014, Plaintiff was seen by Dr. Haga
for lower back pain and sciatic pain. See id. Dr.
Haga did not recommend X-Rays, CT Scans, or MRIs. See
March 23, 2015, Plaintiff's liver was swollen. See
id. On April 3, 2015, a nurse told Plaintiff that
Hepatitis C treatment was not available at WVDC. See
id. at 6. On March 24, 2015, Plaintiff was seen by John
Doe of the medical staff who stated he would tell Dr. Haga to
refer Plaintiff to a G.I. specialist for possible Hepatitis C
treatment. See id. The referral was made on April
16, 2015. See id. Dr. Haga denied the referral on
April 21, 2015, despite knowing that Plaintiff suffered from
chronic Hepatitis C. See id. Plaintiff notes that
Dr. Haga requested and obtained blood reports showing that
Plaintiff had Hepatitis C. See id.
Pacheco has also treated Plaintiff during his detention and
prescribed medication to him, but she never referred him for
any therapy, X-Rays, or to a “back doctor” or
neurologist. See id.
also alleges that deputies were present in the exam room
during Plaintiff's medical examinations, which violates
“HEPA” and is embarrassing to Plaintiff. See
id. at 7.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
complaint may be dismissed as a matter of law for failure to
state a claim for two reasons: (1) lack of a cognizable legal
theory; or (2) insufficient facts under a cognizable legal
theory. Balistreri v. Pacifica Police Dep't, 901
F.2d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 1990). In determining whether the
complaint states a claim on which relief may be granted, its
allegations of material fact must be taken as true and
construed in the light most favorable to the plaintiff.
Love v. United States, 915 F.2d 1242, 1245 (9th Cir.
1989). Since Plaintiff is appearing pro se, the Court must
construe the allegations of the complaint liberally and must
afford Plaintiff the benefit of any doubt. See
Karim-Panahi v. Los Angeles Police Dep't, 839 F.2d
621, 623 (9th Cir. 1988). However, “the liberal
pleading standard . . . applies only to a plaintiff's
factual allegations.” Neitzke v. Williams, 490
U.S. 319, 330 n.9 (1989). ‘“[A] liberal
interpretation of a ...