United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER DIRECTING CLERK OF COURT TO RANDOMLY ASSIGN
DISTRICT JUDGE FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIOS REGARDING
DISMISSAL OF ACTION (ECF NO. 12)
BARBARA A. MCAULIFFE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Melvin Ward (“Plaintiff”) is a state prisoner
proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights
action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. On May 5, 2019, the Court
screened Plaintiff's complaint and granted him leave to
amend. (ECF No. 11.) Plaintiff's first amended complaint,
filed on June 6, 2019, is currently before the Court for
screening. (ECF No. 12.)
Screening Requirement and Standard
Court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners
seeking relief against a governmental entity and/or against
an officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(a). Plaintiff's complaint, or any portion
thereof, is subject to dismissal if it is frivolous or
malicious, if it fails to state a claim upon which relief may
be granted, or if it seeks monetary relief from a defendant
who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. §§
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)).
While a plaintiff's allegations are taken as true, 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).
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 (quotation marks omitted); Moss v. U.S. Secret
Serv., 572 F.3d 962, 969 (9th Cir. 2009). The sheer
possibility that a defendant acted unlawfully is not
sufficient, and mere consistency with liability falls short
of satisfying the plausibility standard. Iqbal, 556
U.S. at 678 (quotation marks omitted); Moss, 572
F.3d at 969.
is currently housed at the California Medical Facility in
Vacaville, California. The events in the complaint are
alleged to have occurred while Plaintiff was housed at Avenal
State Prison. Plaintiff names the following defendants: (1)
Lieutenant B. Summers; (2) Sergeant C. Brown: (3) Lieutenant
M. Contreras; (4) Lieutenant R. P. Murgallis; and (5)
Psychologist Mary Crawley.
alleges that at March 11, 2010, he engaged in a therapy
session with Dr. Crawley. Dr. Crawley was keeping notes as
Plaintiff spoke. At the end of the session, Dr. Crawley gave
no indication that Plaintiff had said anything harmful or
threatening to anyone. Plaintiff was allowed to go back to
his housing unit without mention until March 12, 2010.
March 12, 2010, Plaintiff was taken to Ad-Seg for an alleged
threat to Sergeant J. Lucas. According to Dr. Crawley's
documentation, she had issued several duty-to-warn chronos on
March 12, 2010. One of the chronos referenced the notes she
was taking while in the session with Plaintiff, but the other
document did not. The documents were not given to Plaintiff
by the disciplinary administrator. He had to obtain them
through a medical request. Plaintiff learned that Dr. Crawley
was not participating in the disciplinary write-up. Instead,
Sergeant Brown, whom Plaintiff had never met, wrote Plaintiff
a disciplinary 115. Sergeant Brown did so through a
“confidential informancy.” (ECF No. 12 at 4.)
did not receive the incident report, which allegedly was
fabricated by Lieutenant Contreras, who interviewed Dr.
Crawley and J. Lucas. When Plaintiff attended his first
disciplinary hearing, which was heard by Lieutenant
Murgallis, all charges were to be dropped because Plaintiff
did not have the incident report, duty-to-warn chrono or
reporting employee. Plaintiff began screaming until they took
him out and Lieutenant Murgallis found Plaintiff guilty in
appealed, and the matter was reissued and reheard. By this
time, Plaintiff had all the paperwork needed to stop
Lieutenant Summers from finding him guilty. Plaintiff
produced the notes of the therapy session, which had no
threat in them. However, Lieutenant Summers still found
Plaintiff guilty out of spite.
further alleges that Sergeant Brown knew he did not have the
authority to report the confidential information and that it
was up to Dr. Crawley to report the inmate and write him up
will all the evidence. All Dr. Crawley had done was her duty
to warn. Lieutenant Contreras was put in a position to write
the incident report, to which he showed no viable evidence.
He only had statements from one person that Plaintiff said
nothing to and one person who accused Plaintiff of a crime
with no corroboration. Lieutenant Murgallis reportedly failed
to drop the false charges after Plaintiff identified the
reasons for dismissal. Plaintiff further contends that
Lieutenant Summers had proof that there was no corroboration
in Dr. Crawley's statements.
relief, Plaintiff would like compensation for the years that
he had ...