Bruton v. Napa State Hospital

Filing 4

ORDER OF DISMISSAL WITH LEAVE TO AMEND. Signed by Judge William Alsup on 12/20/12. (Attachments: # 1 Certificate/Proof of Service)(dt, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 12/21/2012)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 8 9 No. C 12-5561 WHA (PR) DAVID BRUTON, 10 ORDER OF DISMISSAL WITH LEAVE TO AMEND vs. For the Northern District of California United States District Court Plaintiff, 11 12 NAPA STATE HOSPITAL, 13 Defendant. / 14 15 INTRODUCTION 16 This is a civil rights case brought pro se by a state prisoner incarcerated at the Napa 17 State Hospital (“NSH”) under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He sues NSH for monetary damages for 18 allegedly violating his civil rights there. He has been granted leave to proceed in forma 19 pauperis in a separate order. For the reasons discussed below, the case is DISMISSED WITH 20 LEAVE TO AMEND. 21 DISCUSSION 22 A. STANDARD OF REVIEW 23 Federal courts must engage in a preliminary screening of cases in which prisoners seek 24 redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. 25 1915A(a). In its review the court must identify any cognizable claims, and dismiss any claims 26 which are frivolous, malicious, fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seek 27 monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. Id. at 1915A(b)(1),(2). 28 Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2) requires only "a short and plain statement of the 1 statement need only '"give the defendant fair notice of what the . . . . claim is and the grounds 4 upon which it rests."'" Erickson v. Pardus, 127 S. Ct. 2197, 2200 (2007) (citations omitted). 5 Although in order to state a claim a complaint “does not need detailed factual allegations, . . . a 6 plaintiff's obligation to provide the 'grounds of his 'entitle[ment] to relief' requires more than 7 labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not 8 do. . . . Factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative 9 level." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 127 S. Ct. 1955, 1964-65 (2007) (citations omitted). A 10 complaint must proffer "enough facts to state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face." Id. 11 For the Northern District of California claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." "Specific facts are not necessary; the 3 United States District Court 2 at 1974. Pro se pleadings must be liberally construed. Balistreri v. Pacifica Police Dep't, 901 12 F.2d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 1990). 13 To state a claim under 42 U.S.C. 1983, a plaintiff must allege two essential elements: 14 (1) that a right secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States was violated, and (2) 15 that the violation was committed by a person acting under the color of state law. West v. Atkins, 16 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988). 17 B. LEGAL CLAIMS 18 Plaintiff alleges that he suffers from schizophrenic disorder and alcoholism, and that 19 NSH is violating his civil rights and his rights under the Rehabilitation Act. NSH, as a state 20 agency, is generally immune under the Eleventh Amendment from claims for money damages. 21 Brown v. Cal. Dep't of Corrs., 554 F.3d 747, 752 (9th Cir. 2009). Claims under the 22 Rehabilitation Act, however, are not barred by the Eleventh Amendment. See Douglas v. 23 California Dept. of Youth Authority, 271 F.3d 812, 819 (9th Cir.), amended, 271 F.3d 910 (9th 24 Cir. 2001). Although plaintiff’s Rehabilitation Act claims are not barred by the Eleventh 25 Amendment, he has not stated any claims with sufficient particularity. He does not explain how 26 NSH is violating his rights other than to make the general statement “a lot of ethics laws” are 27 “being abused” (Compl. 3). Under Rule 8 and Iqbal, in order to adequately notify defendant of 28 his claims, plaintiff must allege facts explaining what rights under the Rehabilitation Act are 2 1 being violated, as well as when, how and by whom they were violated. He will be given leave 2 to amend to attempt to do so. 3 CONCLUSION 4 For the foregoing reasons, 5 1. The complaint is DISMISSED with leave to amend, as indicated above, within 30 days 6 from the date of this order. The amended complaint must include the caption and civil case 7 number used in this order (No. C 12-5561 WHA (PR)) and the words AMENDED 8 COMPLAINT on the first page. Because an amended complaint completely replaces the 9 original complaint, plaintiff must include in it all the claims he wishes to present. See Ferdik v. Bonzelet, 963 F.2d 1258, 1262 (9th Cir. 1992). He may not incorporate material from the 11 For the Northern District of California United States District Court 10 original complaint by reference. Failure to amend within the designated time and in accordance 12 with this order will result in the dismissal of this case. 13 2. It is the plaintiff's responsibility to prosecute this case. Plaintiff must keep the court 14 informed of any change of address by filing with the clerk a separate paper headed “Notice of 15 Change of Address.” Papers intended to be filed in this case should be addressed to the clerk 16 and not to the undersigned. Plaintiff also must comply with the court's orders in a timely 17 fashion. Failure to do so may result in the dismissal of this action for failure to prosecute 18 pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(b). 19 IT IS SO ORDERED. 20 21 Dated: December 20 , 2012. 22 WILLIAM ALSUP UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 23 24 25 26 27 28 G:\PRO-SE\WHA\CR.12\BRUTON5561.LTA.wpd 3

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