Price v. Sabbeen et al

Filing 4

ORDER OF DISMISSAL; GRANTING LEAVE TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS. Signed by Judge Jeffrey S. White on 7/8/2024. (kkp, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 7/8/2024)Any non-CM/ECF Participants have been served by First Class Mail to the addresses of record listed on the Notice of Electronic Filing (NEF)

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1 2 3 4 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 5 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 6 7 MARCUS A. PRICE, Plaintiff, 8 v. 9 10 SABBEEN, et al., Defendants. 11 United States District Court Northern District of California Case No. 24-cv-02379-JSW ORDER OF DISMISSAL; GRANTING LEAVE TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS (ECF No. 3.) INTRODUCTION 12 Plaintiff, proceeding pro se, filed this civil rights case under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against 13 14 doctors at Napa State Hospital (“NSH”), where he has been involuntarily committed. He is 15 granted leave to proceed in forma pauperis (“IFP”) due to a lack of funds. For the reasons 16 discussed below, the complaint is dismissed for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be 17 granted. ANALYSIS 18 19 20 A. STANDARD OF REVIEW When a plaintiff is proceeding IFP, as in this case, "the court shall dismiss the case at any 21 time if the court determines that (A) the allegation of poverty is untrue; or (B) the action or appeal 22 (i) is frivolous or malicious; (ii) fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted; or (iii) seeks 23 monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief." 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). 24 Pro se pleadings must be liberally construed. Balistreri v. Pacifica Police Dep't, 901 F.2d 696, 25 699 (9th Cir. 1990). 26 Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2) requires only "a short and plain statement of the 27 claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." "Specific facts are not necessary; the 28 statement need only '"give the defendant fair notice of what the . . . . claim is and the grounds upon 1 which it rests."'" Erickson v. Pardus, 127 S. Ct. 2197, 2200 (2007) (citations omitted). Although 2 in order to state a claim a complaint “does not need detailed factual allegations, . . . a plaintiff's 3 obligation to provide the 'grounds of his 'entitle[ment] to relief' requires more than labels and 4 conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do. . . . 5 Factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level." Bell 6 Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 127 S. Ct. 1955, 1964-65 (2007) (citations omitted). A complaint 7 must proffer "enough facts to state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face." Id. at 1974. To state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must allege two essential elements: (1) 8 United States District Court Northern District of California 9 that a right secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States was violated, and (2) that the 10 alleged deprivation was committed by a person acting under the color of state law. West v. Atkins, 11 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988). 12 B. 13 LEGAL CLAIMS Plaintiff Price has been involuntarily committed at NSH since in 2019 based upon a 14 finding of not guilty of criminal charges by reason of insanity. Defendants, psychiatrists, have 15 treated him with the antipsychotic medicine Clozapine. He complains that Defendants have 16 denied his requests to discontinue this medication due to its adverse side effects. Plaintiff’s 17 allegations do not state a cognizable claim for relief because a disagreement between him and 18 Defendants, who are doctors, about whether it is medically proper to treat him with Clozapine 19 despite the side effects does not amount to deliberate difference, an element of an Eighth 20 Amendment claim. See Franklin v. Oregon, 662 F.2d 1337, 1344 (9th Cir. 1981) (“A difference 21 of opinion between a prisoner-patient and prison medical authorities regarding treatment does not 22 give rise to a § 1983 claim.”); cf. Toguchi v. Chung, 391 F.3d 1051, 1058 (9th Cir. 2004) (a 23 difference of opinion between medical professionals as to the need to pursue one course of 24 treatment over another is insufficient, as a matter of law, to establish deliberate indifference). 25 Even when the complaint is liberally construed, Plaintiff does not allege facts that plausibly show 26 any Defendants violated his Eighth Amendment rights. 27 // 28 // 2 1 CONCLUSION 2 3 4 5 6 For the reasons set out above, Plaintiff’s claims are DISMISSED for failure to state a cognizable claim for relief. The Clerk shall enter judgment and close the file. IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: July 8, 2024 7 8 JEFFREY S. WHITE United States District Judge 9 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3

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