Lane v. Bullock County Correctional Facility, et al
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER directing as follows: (1) The 25 Motion to Dismiss the Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint is GRANTED and all federal and state claims against the Bullock County Correctional Facility, Limestone Correctional Facili ty, and the Alabama Department of Corrections are DISMISSED, and they are DISMISSED as party Defendants; (2) Any fictitious parties referred to in the First Amended Complaint are also DISMISSED. Signed by Honorable Judge W. Harold Albritton, III on 8/21/13. (scn, )
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
LORI LANE, as the Administratrix for the
Estate of Edward Allen Lane, III,
BULLOCK COUNTY CORRECTIONAL
FACILITY, et al.,
) CIVIL ACTION NO. 2:13-cv-280-WHA
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
I. FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
This case is before the court on a Motion to Dismiss the Plaintiff=s First Amended
Complaint (Doc. #25) filed by the Alabama Department of Corrections (AADOC@), the Bullock
County Correctional Facility, and the Limestone Correctional Facility (collectively Athe
On April 23, 2013, Plaintiff Lori Lane filed a Complaint (Doc. #1) as Administratrix of
the Estate of Edward Allen Lane, III. The Defendants moved to dismiss all claims against them
based on sovereign immunity under the Eleventh Amendment and failure to state a claim under
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). The court did not have enough information to
determine whether the suit should be dismissed, and, finding both the Complaint and Motion to
An Answer (Doc. #29) to the First Amended Complaint was filed by Defendants
Corizon Health, Inc. f/k/a Correctional Medical Services, Inc., Tahir Siddiq, M.D., and
Dismiss to be deficient, struck the Complaint, denied the Motion to Dismiss as moot, and
allowed the Plaintiff to file an Amended Complaint. (Doc. #20).
The Plaintiff filed a First Amended Complaint on July 15, 2013, and the instant Motion
to Dismiss was filed in response. One point of uncertainty in the original Complaint was
whether the Limestone Correctional and Bullock County Correctional Facilities are state or
The Plaintiff now acknowledges that they are state entities. (Doc. #30 at p.1,
For reasons to be discussed, the Motion to Dismiss is due to be GRANTED.
II. MOTION TO DISMISS STANDARD
In analyzing a motion to dismiss, the court accepts the plaintiff=s factual allegations as
true, Hishon v. King & Spalding, 467 U.S. 69, 73 (1984), and construes the complaint in the
plaintiff=s favor, Duke v. Cleland, 5 F.3d 1399, 1402 (11th Cir. 1993). In analyzing the
sufficiency of pleading, the court is guided by a two-prong approach: one, the court is not bound
to accept conclusory statements of the elements of a cause of action and, two, where there are
well-pleaded factual allegations, a court should assume their veracity and then determine
whether they plausibly give rise to entitlement to relief. See Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662,
678-79 (2009). A[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.@ Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (citation
To survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint need not contain Adetailed factual
allegations,@ but instead the complaint must contain Aonly enough facts to state a claim to relief
that is plausible on its face.@ Id. at 555, 570.
The factual allegations Amust be enough to
raise a right to relief above the speculative level.@ Id. at 555.
The Plaintiff has attempted to allege a policy or custom as a basis for liability against the
state entity Defendants. The policy or custom theory relied on by the Plaintiff applies to local,
not state, governments. See, e.g., Monell v. Dep't of Social Servs., 436 U.S. 658, 694 (1978).
A[I]n the absence of consent a suit in which the State or one of its agencies or departments
is named as the defendant is proscribed by the Eleventh Amendment.@ Pennhurst State Sch. &
Hosp. v. Halderman, 465 U.S. 89, 100 (1984).
Alabama has not waived its Eleventh
Amendment immunity, and Congress has not abrogated Alabama's immunity in section 1983
cases. See Carr v. City of Florence, 916 F.2d 1521, 1525 (11th Cir.1990) (citations omitted).
Therefore, the claims against the Alabama Department of Corrections, Bullock County
Correctional Facility, and Limestone Correctional Facility, which are claims against a State and
two of its agencies, are due to be DISMISSED. See, e.g., Jones v. Allen, No. 2:09cv597-MHT,
2012 WL 4378108, at *6 (M.D. Ala. Sept. 7, 2012) (dismissing claims considered to be against
Bullock County Correctional Facility on the basis of Eleventh Amendment immunity); McMiller
v. Smith, No. 5:10cv3255-CLS-JEO, 2012 WL 3150074, at *4 (N.D. Ala. July 3, 2012)
(dismissing claims considered to be against Limestone Correctional Facility on the basis of
Eleventh Amendment immunity).
The Defendants have also moved to dismiss state law claims against them on the basis of
sovereign immunity, and to dismiss fictitious Defendants.2 The Plaintiff has not responded to
the Defendants= immunity arguments regarding the state law claims or argument regarding the
Although the caption of the First Amended Complaint does not contain fictitious
parties, the Plaintiff references such parties in the body of the First Amended Complaint.
propriety of the fictitious defendants. The Plaintiff having voiced no grounds in opposition to
dismissal, the state law claims against the State of Alabama, Bullock County Correctional
Facility, and Limestone Correctional Facility, and any fictitious defendants, are due to be
For the reasons discussed, it is hereby ORDERED as follows:
1. The Motion to Dismiss the Plaintiff=s First Amended Complaint (Doc. #25) is
GRANTED and all federal and state claims against the Bullock County Correctional Facility,
Limestone Correctional Facility, and the Alabama Department of Corrections are DISMISSED,
and they are DISMISSED as party Defendants.
2. Any fictitious parties referred to in the First Amended Complaint are also
DONE this 21st day of August, 2013.
/s/ W. Harold Albritton
W. HAROLD ALBRITTON
SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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