United States District Court, N.D. California
KEENAN G. WILKINS, Plaintiff,
DAVID O. LIVINGSTON, et al., Defendants.
DONATO United States District Judge
a state prisoner, proceeds with a pro se civil rights
complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Previously, while
multiple motions for summary judgment were fully briefed and
pending, plaintiff filed motions to amend and motions to
compel, though he had not first sought the discovery from
defendants. The Court vacated all pending motions and
permitted plaintiff an opportunity to file a third amended
complaint to contain all the claims he wished to pursue.
Plaintiff has filed a third amended complaint.
courts must engage in a preliminary screening of cases in
which prisoners seek redress from a governmental entity or
officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(a). In its review, the Court must identify any
cognizable claims, and dismiss any claims which are
frivolous, malicious, fail to state a claim upon which relief
may be granted, or seek monetary relief from a defendant who
is immune from such relief. Id. at 1915A(b)(1), (2).
Pro se pleadings must be liberally construed. Balistreri
v. Pacifica Police Dep't, 901 F.2d 696, 699 (9th
Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2) requires only “a short
and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is
entitled to relief.” Although a complaint “does
not need detailed factual allegations, . . . a
plaintiff's obligation to provide the ‘grounds'
of his ‘entitle[ment] to relief' requires more than
labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action will not do. . . . Factual
allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above
the speculative level.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (citations omitted). A
complaint must proffer “enough facts to state a claim
to relief that is plausible on its face.” Id.
at 570. The United States Supreme Court has explained the
“plausible on its face” standard of
Twombly: “While legal conclusions can provide
the framework of a complaint, they must be supported by
factual allegations. When there are well-pleaded factual
allegations, a court should assume their veracity and then
determine whether they plausibly give rise to an entitlement
to relief.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662,
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must
allege that: (1) a right secured by the Constitution or laws
of the United States was violated, and (2) the alleged
deprivation was committed by a person acting under the color
of state law. West v. Atkins, 487 U.S. 42, 48
allegations arise from his detention at Martinez Detention
Facility. Plaintiff was a convicted prisoner who was
transferred to Martinez Detention Facility. Plaintiff alleges
that his due process rights were violated in being placed in
Administrative Segregation (“Ad. Seg.”) and
retained there, the conditions in Ad. Seg. violated the
Eighth Amendment, his rights under the Equal Protection
Clause were violated, he was denied access to the courts, a
defendant retaliated against plaintiff due to his protected
conduct and there was a violation of his medical privacy
that are procedurally protected by the Due Process Clause may
arise from two sources; the Due Process Clause itself and
laws of the states. See Meachum v. Fano, 427 U.S.
215, 223-27 (1976). In the prison context, these interests
are generally ones pertaining to liberty. Changes in
conditions so severe as to affect the sentence imposed in an
unexpected manner implicate the Due Process Clause itself,
whether or not they are authorized by state law. See
Sandin v. Conner, 515 U.S. 472, 484 (1995) (citing
Vitek v. Jones, 445 U.S. 480, 493 (1980) (transfer
to mental hospital), and Washington v. Harper, 494
U.S. 210, 221-22 (1990) (involuntary administration of
that are authorized by state law and are less severe or more
closely related to the expected terms of confinement may also
amount to deprivations of a procedurally protected liberty
interest, provided that (1) state statutes or regulations
narrowly restrict the power of prison officials to impose the
deprivation, i.e., give the inmate a kind of right to avoid
it, and (2) the liberty in question is one of “real
substance.” See id. at 477-87. Generally,
“real substance” will be limited to freedom from
(1) a restraint that imposes “atypical and significant
hardship on the inmate in relation to the ordinary incidents
of prison life, ” id. at 484, or (2) state
action that “will inevitably affect the duration of [a]
sentence, ” id. at 487.
alleges that he was placed in Ad. Seg. for eight months for
unknown reasons without any due process and he was denied
participation in periodic reviews that retained him in Ad.
Seg. He also presents allegations that the deprivations while
in Ad. Seg. were atypical and significant hardships. This is
sufficient to state a due process claim against Livingston,
Vanderlind, Vannoy and Wilson.
of Confinement and Exercise
Constitution does not mandate comfortable prisons, but
neither does it permit inhumane ones. See Farmer v.
Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 832 (1994). The treatment a
prisoner receives in prison and the conditions under which he
is confined are subject to scrutiny under the Eighth
Amendment. See Helling v. McKinney, 509 U.S. 25, 31
(1993). The Eighth Amendment imposes duties on these
officials, who must provide all prisoners with the basic
necessities of life such as food, clothing, shelter,
sanitation, medical care and personal safety. See
Farmer, 511 U.S. at 832; DeShaney v. Winnebago Cnty.
Dep't of Soc. Servs., 489 U.S. 189, 199-200 (1989);
Hoptowit v. Ray, 682 F.2d 1237, 1246 (9th Cir.
1982). A prison official violates the Eighth Amendment when
two requirements are met: (1) the deprivation alleged must
be, objectively, sufficiently serious, Farmer, at
834 (citing Wilson v. Seiter, 501 U.S. 294, 298
(1991)), and (2) the prison official possesses a sufficiently
culpable state of mind, id. (citing Wilson,
501 U.S. at 297). Prisoners may be entitled to appropriate
materials to clean their cells depending on the overall
squalor of the institution. See Hoptowit v.
Spellman, 753 F.2d 779, 784 (9th Cir. 1985).
is one of the basic human necessities protected by the Eighth
Amendment. See LeMaire v. Maass, 12 F.3d 1444, 1457
(9th Cir. 1993); Toussaint v. Rushen, 553 F.Supp.
1365, 1380 (N.D. Cal. 1983), aff'd in part and
vacated in part, 722 F.2d 1490 (9th Cir. 1984). Some
form of regular exercise, including outdoor exercise,
“is extremely important to the psychological and
physical well-being” of prisoners. See Spain v.
Procunier, 600 F.2d 189, 199 (9th Cir. 1979).
officials therefore may not deprive prisoners of regular
exercise. See Toussaint v. McCarthy, 597 F.Supp.
1388, 1393 (N.D. Cal. 1984) aff'd in part and
rev'd in part, 801 F.2d 1080 (9th Cir. 1986).
Although the Ninth Circuit did not specify the “minimum
amount of weekly exercise that must be afforded to detainees
who spend the bulk of their time inside their cells, ”
the court held that ninety minutes per week of exercise,
which is the equivalent of slightly less than ...