United States District Court, E.D. California
FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS REGARDING
DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO DISMISS (ECF NO. 92) FOURTEEN (14)
BARBARA A. McAULIFFE, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
William Thomas Coats (“Plaintiff”) is a state
prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma
pauperis in this civil rights action under 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. This action currently proceeds on
Plaintiff's first amended complaint against Defendants
Fairchild, Gundran, Gladden, Nguyen, and Convalecer for
deliberate indifference to serious medical needs in violation
of the Eighth Amendment and for state law claims of medical
negligence and medical malpractice.
December 6, 2018, Defendants filed the instant motion to
dismiss pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6).
By this motion, Defendants seek to dismiss this action on the
grounds that Plaintiff has failed to exhaust his
administrative remedies and has failed to state facts
sufficient to establish a cause of action against each of the
Defendants for deliberate indifference to serious medical
need, medical negligence, and medical malpractice. (ECF No.
92.) On December 26, 2018, Plaintiff opposed the motion. (ECF
No. 93.) Defendants filed a reply on January 3, 2019. (ECF
No. 94.) The motion is deemed submitted. Local Rule 230(1).
Motion to Dismiss Standard
motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6) tests the legal
sufficiency of a claim, and dismissal is proper if there is a
lack of a cognizable legal theory or the absence of
sufficient facts alleged under a cognizable legal theory.
Conservation Force v. Salazar, 646 F.3d 1240,
1241-42 (9th Cir. 2011) (quotation marks and citations
omitted). To survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must
contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state
a claim that is plausible on its face. Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (citing Bell
Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007))
(quotation marks omitted); Conservation Force, 646
F.3d at 1242; Moss v. U.S. Secret Serv., 572 F.3d
962, 969 (9th Cir. 2009). The Court must accept the well-pled
factual allegations as true and draw all reasonable
inferences in favor of the non-moving party. Daniels-Hall
v. Nat'l Educ. Ass'n, 629 F.3d 992, 998 (9th
Cir. 2010); Sanders v. Brown, 504 F.3d 903, 910 (9th
Cir. 2007); Huynh v. Chase Manhattan Bank, 465 F.3d
992, 996-97 (9th Cir. 2006). Further, prisoners proceeding
pro se in civil rights actions are entitled to have
their pleadings liberally construed and to have any doubt
resolved in their favor. Hebbe v. Pliler, 627 F.3d
338, 342 (9th Cir. 2010) (citations omitted).
Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies Standard
Statutory Exhaustion Requirement
1997e(a) of the Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1995
(“PLRA”) provides that “[n]o action shall
be brought with respect to prison conditions under [42 U.S.C.
§ 1983], or any other Federal law, by a prisoner
confined in any jail, prison, or other correctional facility
until such administrative remedies as are available are
exhausted.” 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(a). Prisoners are
required to exhaust the available administrative remedies
prior to filing suit. Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S. 199,
211 (2007); McKinney v. Carey, 311 F.3d 1198,
1199-1201 (9th Cir. 2002). Exhaustion is required regardless
of the relief sought by the prisoner and regardless of the
relief offered by the process, Booth v. Churner, 532
U.S. 731, 741 (2001), and the exhaustion requirement applies
to all prisoner suits relating to prison life, Porter v.
Nussle, 534 U.S. 516, 532 (2002).
properly exhaust administrative remedies prisoners
‘must complete the administrative review process in
accordance with the applicable procedural rules,' [
]-rules that are defined not by the PLRA, but by the prison
grievance process itself.” Jones, 549 U.S. at
218 (quoting Woodford v. Ngo, 548 U.S. 81, 88
(2006)). To provide adequate notice, the prisoner need only
provide the level of detail required by the prison's
regulations. Sapp v. Kimbrell, 623 F.3d 813, 824
(9th Cir. 2010) (citing Jones, 549 U.S. at 218).
may raise exhaustion deficiencies as an affirmative defense
under § 1997e(a) in either (1) a motion to dismiss
pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) or (2) a motion for summary
judgment under Rule 56. Albino v. Baca, 747 F.3d
1162, 1168-69 (9th Cir. 2014). However, motions to dismiss
under Rule 12(b)(6) are only appropriate “in those rare
cases where a failure to exhaust is clear from the face of
the complaint.” Id. at 1169.
Court concludes that Plaintiff has failed to exhaust
available remedies, the proper remedy is dismissal without
prejudice of the portions of the complaint barred by §
1997e(a). See Jones, 549 U.S. at 223-24; Lira v.
Herrera, 427 F.3d 1164, 1175-76 (9th Cir. 2005).
Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation