Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Freeman v. Kernan

United States District Court, E.D. California

July 15, 2019

TRAVON LEON FREEMAN, Plaintiff,
v.
SCOTT KERNAN, et al., Defendant.

          ORDER AND FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

          ALLISON CLAIRE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Plaintiff is a state prisoner proceeding pro se with a civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

         I. Three Strikes Analysis

         Plaintiff seeks leave to proceed in forma pauperis under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a). ECF No. 2. The Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (PLRA) permits any court of the United States to authorize the commencement and prosecution of any suit without prepayment of fees by a person who submits an affidavit indicating that the person is unable to pay such fees. However,

[i]n no event shall a prisoner bring a civil action or appeal a judgement in a civil action or proceeding under this section if the prisoner has, on 3 or more occasions, while incarcerated or detained in any facility, brought an action or appeal in a court of the United States that was dismissed on the grounds that it is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, unless the prisoner is under imminent danger of serious physical injury.

28 U.S.C. § 1915(g).

         The plain language of the statute makes clear that a prisoner is precluded from bringing a civil action or an appeal in forma pauperis if the prisoner has brought three frivolous actions and/or appeals (or any combination thereof totaling three). Rodriguez v. Cook, 169 F.3d 1176, 1178 (9th Cir. 1999). “[Section] 1915(g) should be used to deny a prisoner's [in forma pauperis] status only when, after careful evaluation of the order dismissing an action, and other relevant information, the district court determines that the action was dismissed because it was frivolous, malicious or failed to state a claim.” Andrews v. King, 398 F.3d 1113, 1121 (9th Cir. 2005). “[W]hen a district court disposes of an in forma pauperis complaint ‘on the grounds that [the claim] is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted,' such a complaint is ‘dismissed' for purposes of § 1915(g) even if the district court styles such dismissal as denial of the prisoner's application to file the action without prepayment of the full filing fee.” O'Neal v. Price, 531 F.3d 1146, 1153 (9th Cir. 2008) (second alteration in original). Dismissal also counts as a strike under § 1915(g) “when (1) a district court dismisses a complaint on the ground that it fails to state a claim, (2) the court grants leave to amend, and (3) the plaintiff then fails to file an amended complaint” regardless of whether the case was dismissed with or without prejudice. Harris v. Mangum, 863 F.3d 1133, 1142-43 (9th Cir. 2017).

         Inspection of other cases filed by plaintiff in this court has led to the identification of at least three cases brought by plaintiff that qualify as strikes. The court takes judicial notice of the following lawsuits filed by plaintiff:[1]

1. Freeman v. Adams, E.D. Cal. No. 1:09-cv-2129 SKO (complaint dismissed with leave to amend for failure to state a claim, case dismissed on April 18, 2011, for failure state a claim after plaintiff failed to file an amended complaint);
2. Freeman v. Hynse, E.D. Cal. No. 1:09-cv-2146 GBC (complaint dismissed with leave to amend for failure to state a claim, case dismissed on January 13, 2012, for failure state a claim after plaintiff failed to file an amended complaint);
3. Freeman v. Julious, E.D. Cal. No. 1:09-cv-2245 DLB (case dismissed for failure to state a claim on May 6, 2011).

         All of the preceding cases were dismissed well in advance of the October 22, 2017 filing of the instant action, [2] and none of the strikes have been overturned. Therefore, this court finds that plaintiff is precluded from proceeding in forma pauperis unless he is “under imminent danger of serious physical injury.” 28 U.S.C. § 1915(g). To satisfy the exception, plaintiff must have alleged facts that demonstrate that he was “under imminent danger of serious physical injury” at the time of filing the complaint. Andrews v. Cervantes, 493 F.3d 1047, 1053 (9th Cir. 2007) (“[I]t is the circumstances at the time of the filing of the complaint that matters for purposes of the ‘imminent danger' exception to § 1915(g).”); see also, Abdul-Akbar v. McKelvie, 239 F.3d 307, 312-14 (3rd Cir. 2001); Medberry v. Butler, 185 F.3d 1189, 1192-93 (11th Cir. 1999); Ashley v. Dilworth, 147 F.3d 715, 717 (8th Cir. 1998); Banos v. O'Guin, 144 F.3d 883, 885 (5th Cir. 1998).

         The complaint alleges that from May 26 through June 25, 2017, during the month of Ramadan, plaintiff's meals were regularly incomplete, raw, and uncooked, leading plaintiff to go on a hunger strike from July 8 to 31, 2017. ECF No. 1 at 5, 7. As a result, plaintiff went 37 days without receiving a 2, 500-calorie diet, causing him to become lightheaded and weak and drastically lose weight. Id. at 5. When he tried to file an administrative appeal at the end of his hunger strike, it was rejected because of the hunger strike. Id. at 8. The complaint was not filed until October 22, 2017. Accordingly, these allegations do not demonstrate an imminent risk of serious physical injury at the time of filing, and the undersigned will therefore recommend that plaintiff be required to pay the filing fee in full or have the complaint dismissed.

         II. Plain Language Summary of this Order for ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.