United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Statesboro Division
ORDER AND MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND
STAN BAKER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
who is housed at Georgia State Prison in Reidsville, Georgia,
filed a Complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 to
contest certain conditions of his confinement. (Doc. 1.)
Concurrently, Plaintiff also filed a Motion for Leave to
Proceed in Forma Pauperis. (Doc. 2.) The Court
granted Plaintiff's Motion. (Doc. 4.) For the reasons
which follow, I RECOMMEND the Court
DISMISS Plaintiff's Complaint for
failure to state a claim and DIRECT the
Clerk of Court to CLOSE this case and enter
the appropriate judgment of dismissal. Additionally, I
RECOMMEND the Court DENY
Plaintiff leave to appeal in forma pauperis.
Complaint, Plaintiff alleges he asked a counselor why he was
moved out of a room with a member of one gang and placed in a
room with a member of another gang with whom he had
previously had issues “on the compound[.]” (Doc.
1, p. 5.) Plaintiff asserts, six days later, he informed
Defendant Mendez during breakfast he and his roommate were
“having some issue”, and Defendant Mendez told
Plaintiff he would tell Defendant Sharpe, the officer in
charge, when he had time. (Id.) Plaintiff avers he
was awakened around afternoon pill call due to his roommate
stabbing him with a homemade knife. Plaintiff states he began
beating on the door for help, at which time an officer and a
nurse came to Plaintiff's door. Plaintiff contends he
told the officer he had been stabbed, and, once the officer
saw all of the blood on Plaintiff, he called for assistance.
(Id.) While he was in medical, Plaintiff maintains
the doctor informed Defendants Mobley and Sharpe that
Plaintiff needed outside medical treatment due to the loss of
blood. (Id. at p. 6.)
seeks to bring this action in forma pauperis. 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, 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).
Court looks to the instructions for pleading contained in the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure when reviewing a Complaint
on an application to proceed in forma pauperis.
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)).
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)).
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
Dismissal for Failure to State a Claim and Respondeat
order to state a claim for relief under Section 1983, a
plaintiff must satisfy two elements. First, a plaintiff must
allege that an act or omission deprived him “of some
right, privilege, or immunity secured by the Constitution or
laws of the United States.” Hale v. Tallapoosa
Cty., 50 F.3d 1579, 1582 (11th Cir. 1995). Second, a
plaintiff must allege that the act or omission was committed
by “a person acting under color of state law.”
Id. Further, Section 1983 liability must be based on
something more than a defendant's supervisory position or
a theory of respondeat superior. Bryant v.
Jones, 575 F.3d 1281, 1299 (11th Cir. 2009); Braddy
v. Fla. Dep't of Labor & Emp't Sec., 133
F.3d 797, 801 (11th Cir. 1998).
supervisor may be liable only through personal participation
in the alleged constitutional violation or when there is a
causal connection between the supervisor's conduct and
the alleged violations. Id. at 802. “To state
a claim against a supervisory defendant, the plaintiff must
allege (1) the supervisor's personal involvement in the
violation of his constitutional rights, (2) the existence of
a custom or policy that resulted in deliberate indifference
to the plaintiff's constitutional rights, (3) facts
supporting an inference that the supervisor directed the
unlawful action or knowingly failed to prevent it, or (4) a
history of widespread abuse that put the supervisor on notice
of an alleged deprivation that he then failed to
correct.” Barr v. Gee, 437 F. App'x 865,
875 (11th Cir. 2011).
seeks to hold Defendants Williams and Bobbitt liable solely
based on their supervisory positions as Warden and Deputy
Warden at a penal institution. However, Plaintiff fails to
present any facts indicating there is a causal connection
between any actions of Defendants Williams and Bobbitt and
the alleged violation of Plaintiff's constitutional
rights. He does not allege Defendants Williams and Bobbitt
were personally involved in the conditions that he complains
of or that the conditions resulted from some custom or policy
Defendants Williams and Bobbitt promulgated or maintained.
Plaintiff also fails to plausibly allege that Defendants
Williams and Bobbitt directed the allegedly unlawful
conditions or ignored a widespread history of abuse in this
regard. In fact, Plaintiff fails to make any factual
allegations against Defendants Williams and Bobbitt, let
alone even conclusory allegations that ...