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Legare v. C. Cryer

United States District Court, E.D. California

November 19, 2019

C. CRYER, et al., Defendants.




         Plaintiff James Paul Legare (“Plaintiff”) is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this civil rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. On September 4, 2019, the Court screened Plaintiff's complaint and granted him leave to amend. (ECF No. 15.) Plaintiff's first amended complaint, filed on November 4, 2019, is currently before the Court for screening. (ECF No. 18.)

         I. Screening Requirement and Standard

         The 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. §§ 1915A(b).

         A 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).

         To 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.

         II. Allegations in Complaint

         Plaintiff is currently housed at the California Institution for Men in Chino, California. The events in the complaint are alleged to have occurred while Plaintiff was housed at the California Substance Abuse and Treatment Facility (“CSATF”) in Coalinga, California. Plaintiff names the following defendants: (1) C. Cryer, Chief Executive Officer; (2) S. Gates, Chief, Health Care Appeals Branch-Sacramento; and (3) Does 1 through 5, CSATF medical/health care providers.

         Plaintiff alleges: On July 2017, after Plaintiff had complained for months about groin pain, he was prescribed Oxcarbazepine (“Trileptal”) for pain management. Soon after taking Trileptal, Plaintiff began to suffer side effects, such as dizziness, sleeplessness, periodic blurred vision, confusion, thirst, fatigue and other negative effects.

         On August 1, 2017, Plaintiff submitted a CDCR 7362 request for medical services complaining about the serious side effects that Trileptal and requesting that a different pain medication be prescribed. Plaintiff contends that despite Defendant Cryer and Doe Defendants possessing knowledge of Plaintiff's side effects, they were indifferent to Plaintiff's suffering, taking no action to prevent the reported condition. Plaintiff claims that defendants violated departmental health care policies, which in turn caused Plaintiff to fall and injure himself.

         By August 15, 2017, Plaintiff claims that he could no longer endure the side effects and refused to take Trileptal. Plaintiff asserts that Defendant Cryer and Doe Defendants, despite knowing that Plaintiff stopped taking Trileptal, took no corrective action to prescribe him an alternate pain management medication. Plaintiff further asserts that this caused him to languish in 24/7 incessant groin pain that triggered falls to the ground resulting in physical injury. Plaintiff alleges that one Doe Defendant further injured Plaintiff by issuing him a negative CDCR 128B for exercising his right to refuse the medication causing life threatening side effects.

         On August 6, 2017, Plaintiff asserts that the Board of Parole Hearings negatively addressed the CDCR 128B record during Plaintiff's bid for freedom.

         From August 15, 2017 to September 17, 2017, Defendant Cryer and Doe Defendants failed to provide Plaintiff with care or pain management to relieve his groin pain. Plaintiff asserts that the groin pain caused him to fall hard to the ground, resulting in injury to his person and the ...

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