United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Augusta Division
MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND
K. EPPS, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
a pretrial detainee at Laurens County Jail in Dublin,
Georgia, brought the above-captioned case pursuant to 42
U.S.C. § 1983, concerning events allegedly occurring at
Burke County Jail (“BCJ”) in Waynesboro, Georgia.
Because he is proceeding in forma pauperis
(“IFP”), Plaintiff's complaint must be
screened to protect potential defendants. Phillips v.
Mashburn, 746 F.2d 782, 785 (11th Cir. 1984);
Al-Amin v. Donald, 165 Fed.Appx. 733, 736 (11th Cir.
2006) (per curiam).
SCREENING OF THE COMPLAINT
names as Defendants: (1) Major John H. Bush; (2) Captain
Cassandra Haynes; (3) Major Chester V. Huffman; (4) Sergeant
Williams; (5) Burke County Sheriff's Department; and (6)
Jail Administrators. (Doc. no. 1, pp. 1-2.) Taking all of
Plaintiff's factual allegations as true, as the Court
must for purposes of the present screening, the facts are as
unknown date, whiled detained at BCJ, an officer called for
Plaintiff, and Plaintiff went to the front of BCJ to talk
with that officer. (Doc. no 1-3, p. 1.) Plaintiff believed he
was being called because his attorney came to talk about
Plaintiff's court appearance the following day.
(Id.) However, Plaintiff was being transferred to
Jefferson County Jail (“JCJ”) in Louisville,
Georgia. (Id.) Plaintiff did not learn he was being
transferred until after being escorted to the front of BCJ
and talking with the shift sergeant. (Id.) Officers
then placed Plaintiff in a holding cell. (Id.)
begged the shift sergeant to return to his cell and get his
stuff, which included legal mail, personal items, money, and
other confidential information. (Id.) These
materials were important to Plaintiff because it included
information about Plaintiff working with the government on
drug deals and figuring out who were gang members.
(Id.) However, the shift sergeant refused to allow
Plaintiff to return to his cell, and Plaintiff was
transferred to JCJ. (Id.)
couple of days after being transferred to JCJ,
Plaintiff's cousin called Plaintiff and told him another
detainee found Plaintiff's letters to the government and
his personal belongings, such as his bank account pin number
and $170. (Id.) This inmate told Plaintiff's
cousin he let everyone at BCJ know about Plaintiff's
involvement with the government. (Id.) Gang members
thanked the inmate who stole Plaintiff's belonging,
stating they would kill Plaintiff. (Id.) Plaintiff
alleges this should not have happened and is exactly why he
asked the shift sergeant to return to his cell.
a month after the call from his cousin, Brad Mitchell went to
Plaintiff's mother's home and told her he was just
released from BCJ. (Id. at 1-2.) Mr. Mitchell went
on to say someone named Dale Sherman had Plaintiff's pin
number and showed everybody the messages Plaintiff was
relaying to the government, his lawyer, and the probation
office. (Id. at 2.) Mr. Mitchell also stated Mr.
Sherman and other detainees wanted to kill Plaintiff.
(Id.) Plaintiff alleges BCJ's handling of his
materials was improper and violated his Fourth and Fourteenth
Amendment rights and article seven of the universal
declaration of human rights. (Id.) By not handling
his materials properly, BCJ has placed Plaintiff and his
family in danger. (Id.)
mother spoke with Captain Haynes, Major Bush, Major Huffman,
and others. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges they mailed $170
by way of check, but Plaintiff has not received it.
(Id.) While talking to Plaintiff's mother over
the phone, Major Bush laughed at her, and Major Huffman
stated he could not help. (Id.) Plaintiff's only
alleged injuries are mental stress. (Doc. no. 1, p. 5.) For
relief, Plaintiff requests $300, 000 to move his family,
placement in witness protection, his name changed, and Burke
County Sheriff's Department to pay for his court costs.
Legal Standard for Screening
complaint or any portion thereof may be dismissed if it is
frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted, or if it seeks monetary relief from a
defendant who is immune to such relief. See 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2)(B) and 1915A(b). A claim is
frivolous if it “lacks an arguable basis either in law
or in fact.” Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S.
319, 327 (1989). “Failure to state a claim under §
1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) is governed by the same standard as
dismissal for failure to state a claim under Fed.R.Civ.P.
12(b)(6).” Wilkerson v. H & S, Inc., 366
Fed.Appx. 49, 51 (11th Cir. 2010) (citing Mitchell v.
Farcass, 112 F.3d 1483, 1490 (11th Cir. 1997)).
avoid dismissal for failure to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted, the allegations in the complaint must
“state a claim for relief that is plausible on its
face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
544, 570 (2007). “A claim has facial plausibility when
the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to
draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal,556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). That is,
“[f]actual allegations must be enough to raise a right
to relief above the speculative level.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. While Rule 8(a) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure does not require detailed
factual allegations, “it demands more than an
unadorned, the defendant unlawfully-harmed-me
accusation.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. A
complaint is insufficient if it “offers ‘labels
and conclusions' or ‘a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action, '” or if it
“tenders ‘naked assertions' devoid of
‘further factual ...