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.

Wright v. Core Civic's Policy

United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Statesboro Division

March 22, 2017

WILLIE FRANK WRIGHT, JR., Plaintiff,
v.
CORE CIVIC'S POLICY, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER AND MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          R. STAN BAKER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Plaintiff, who is currently housed at Autry State Prison in Pelham, Georgia, filed a cause of action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 contesting certain conditions of his confinement at Jenkins Correctional Center in Millen, Georgia. (Doc. 1.) Concurrently, Plaintiff also filed a Motion for Leave to Proceed in Forma Pauperis and a Motion for Preliminary Injunction and Temporary Restraining Order. (Docs. 2, 3.) For the reasons which follow, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion for Leave to Proceed in Forma Pauperis. For these same reasons, I RECOMMEND that the Court DISMISS Plaintiff's Complaint without prejudice for Plaintiff's abuse of judicial process, DISMISS as moot Plaintiff's Motion for Preliminary Injunction and Temporary Restraining Order, DIRECT the Clerk of Court to CLOSE this case, and DENY Plaintiff leave to proceed in forma pauperis on appeal.

         BACKGROUND

         In his Complaint, Plaintiff asserts seven “gang bangers” assaulted him while Defendants Burke, Lawson, and Sapp failed to intervene on his behalf. (Doc. 1, p. 5.) Plaintiff contends that his face was swollen so badly as a result of this assault, he was taken to a local hospital for x- rays and a CAT scan, which revealed Plaintiff's nose was broken. Plaintiff also contends Defendant Marley, the doctor at the correctional facility, only gave him Motrin for his pain and refused to provide any treatment for Plaintiff's broken nose. (Id.) Plaintiff states his property was damaged, and Defendant Young would not pay for Plaintiff to have his legal materials replaced. (Id. at p. 6.) Plaintiff avers he has not had adequate access to the courts and that there was not an adequate law library at the Jenkins Correctional Center. Additionally, Plaintiff makes allegations concerning the general conditions at the Jenkins Correctional Center. (Id. at p. 8.)

         STANDARD OF REVIEW

         Plaintiff seeks to bring this action in forma pauperis under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1), the Court may authorize the filing of a civil lawsuit without the prepayment of fees if the plaintiff submits an affidavit that includes a statement of all of his assets and shows an inability to pay the filing fee and also includes a statement of the nature of the action which shows that he is entitled to redress. Even if the plaintiff proves indigence, the Court must dismiss the action if it is frivolous or malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2)(B)(i)-(ii). Additionally, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, the Court must review a complaint in which a prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity. Upon such screening, the Court must dismiss a complaint, or any portion thereof, that is frivolous or malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted or which seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b).

         When reviewing a Complaint on an application to proceed in forma pauperis, the Court is guided by the instructions for pleading contained in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 8 (“A pleading that states a claim for relief must contain [among other things] . . . a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.”); Fed.R.Civ.P. 10 (requiring that claims be set forth in numbered paragraphs, each limited to a single set of circumstances). Further, a claim is frivolous under Section 1915(e)(2)(B)(i) “if it is ‘without arguable merit either in law or fact.'” Napier v. Preslicka, 314 F.3d 528, 531 (11th Cir. 2002) (quoting Bilal v. Driver, 251 F.3d 1346, 1349 (11th Cir. 2001)).

         Whether a complaint fails to state a claim under Section 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) is governed by the same standard applicable to motions to dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). Thompson v. Rundle, 393 F.App'x 675, 678 (11th Cir. 2010). Under that standard, this Court must determine whether the complaint contains “sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). A plaintiff must assert “more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not” suffice. Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. Section 1915 also “accords judges not only the authority to dismiss a claim based on an indisputably meritless legal theory, but also the unusual power to pierce the veil of the complaint's factual allegations and dismiss those claims whose factual contentions are clearly baseless.” Bilal, 251 F.3d at 1349 (quoting Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 327 (1989)).

         In its analysis, the Court will abide by the long-standing principle that the pleadings of unrepresented parties are held to a less stringent standard than those drafted by attorneys and, therefore, must be liberally construed. Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972); Boxer X v. Harris, 437 F.3d 1107, 1110 (11th Cir. 2006) (“Pro se pleadings are held to a less stringent standard than pleadings drafted by attorneys.”) (emphasis omitted) (quoting Hughes v. Lott, 350 F.3d 1157, 1160 (11th Cir. 2003)). However, Plaintiff's unrepresented status will not excuse mistakes regarding procedural rules. McNeil v. United States, 508 U.S. 106, 113 (1993) (“We have never suggested that procedural rules in ordinary civil litigation should be interpreted so as to excuse mistakes by those who proceed without counsel.”).

         DISCUSSION

         I. Dismissal for Abuse of Judicial Process

         The Complaint form directly asks Plaintiff whether he has “brought any lawsuits in federal court while incarcerated in any institution[ ]” prior to his current filing. (Doc. 1, p. 2 (emphasis supplied).) Plaintiff marked this question and the subsequent questions regarding previous lawsuits with a large “X” and wrote “NA” on the top of this page. (Id.) Additionally, Plaintiff marked through the page of the Complaint form asking whether Plaintiff had been permitted to proceed in forma pauperis and whether any of those suits were dismissed as being frivolous or malicious or failing to state a claim. (Id. at p. 3.) However, a search of Plaintiff's litigation history reveals that he filed several lawsuits in federal court prior to the execution of his present Complaint on February 13, 2017: 1) Wright v. McGrief, 5:16-cv-00134-CAR-MSH (M.D. Ga. June 29, 2016), ECF No. 7 (dismissing complaint as barred by 28 U.S.C. § 1915(g)); 2) Wright v. Massey, 5:11-cv-491-MTT (M.D. Ga. Dec. 28, 2011), ECF No. 6 (dismissing complaint for failing to state a claim); 3) Wright v. Waller, 5:10-cv-254-MTT (M.D. Ga. Aug. 23, 2011), ECF No. 31 (dismissing complaint based on failure to exhaust administrative remedies); 4) Wright v. Shelton, 5:10-cv-246-MTT (M.D. Ga. July 16, 2010), ECF No. 4 (dismissing complaint as frivolous); and 5) Wright v. Ray, 1:01-cv-01052-CAM (N.D.Ga. Apr. 20, 2001), ECF No. 1.[1]

         As previously stated, Section 1915 requires a court to dismiss a prisoner's action if, at any time, the court determines that it is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim, or seeks relief from an immune defendant. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B). Significantly, “[a] finding that the plaintiff engaged in bad faith litigiousness or manipulative tactics warrants dismissal” under Section 1915. Redmon v. Lake Cty. Sheriff's Office, 414 F.App'x 221, 225 (11th Cir. 2011) (alteration in original) (quoting Attwood v. Singletary, 105 F.3d 610, 613 (11th Cir. 1997)). In addition, Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 11(c) permits a court to impose sanctions, including dismissal, for “knowingly fil[ing] a pleading that contains false contentions.” Id. at 225-26 (citing Fed.R.Civ.P. 11(c)). Again, although pro se pleadings are to be construed liberally, “a plaintiff's pro se status will not excuse mistakes regarding procedural rules.” Id. at 226.

         Relying on this authority, the Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit has consistently upheld the dismissal of cases where a pro se prisoner plaintiff has failed to disclose his previous lawsuits as required on the face of the Section 1983 complaint form. See, e.g., Redmon, 414 F.App'x at 226 (pro se prisoner's nondisclosure of prior litigation in Section 1983 complaint amounted to abuse of judicial process resulting in sanction of dismissal); Shelton v. Rohrs, 406 F.App'x 340, 341 (11th Cir. 2010) (same); Young v. Sec'y Fla. for Dep't of Corr., 380 F.App'x 939, 941 (11th Cir. 2010) (same); Hood v. Tompkins, 197 F.App'x 818, 819 (11th Cir. 2006) (same). Even where the prisoner has later provided an explanation for his lack of candor, the Court has generally rejected the proffered reason as unpersuasive. See, e.g., Redmon, 414 F.App'x at 226 (“The district court did not abuse its discretion in concluding that Plaintiff's explanation for his failure to disclose the Colorado lawsuit-that he misunderstood the form- did not excuse the misrepresentation and that dismissal was a proper sanction.”); Shelton, 406 F.App'x at 341 (“Even if [the plaintiff] did not have access to his materials, he would have known that he filed multiple previous lawsuits.”); Young, 380 F.App'x at 941 (finding that not having documents concerning prior litigation and not being able to pay for copies of same did not absolve prisoner ...


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.