BRADSHAW et al v. STATE OF INDIANA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE et al
Entry Dismissing Amended Complaint and Directing Entry of Final Judgment (copies mailed) Signed by Judge William T. Lawrence on 4/26/2017.(JDC)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF INDIANA
STATE OF INDIANA DEPARTMENT OF
DELAWARE COUNTY SHERIFF’S
Case No. 1:17-cv-00754-WTL-MPB
Entry Dismissing Amended Complaint and Directing Entry of Final Judgment
District courts have an obligation under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B) to screen complaints
before service on the defendants, and must dismiss the complaint if it is frivolous or malicious,
fails to state a claim for relief, or seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from
such relief. Dismissal under the in forma pauperis statute is an exercise of the Court’s discretion.
Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 34 (1992). In determining whether the complaint states a claim,
the Court applies the same standard as when addressing a motion to dismiss under Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). See Lagerstrom v. Kingston, 463 F.3d 621, 624 (7th Cir. 2006). To
survive dismissal under federal pleading standards,
[the] complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state a
claim to relief that is plausible on its face. 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). Thus, a “plaintiff must do better than putting a few
words on paper that, in the hands of an imaginative reader, might suggest that something has
happened to her that might be redressed by the law.” Swanson v. Citibank, N.A., 614 F.3d 400, 403
(7th Cir. 2010) (emphasis in original).
Pro se complaints such as that filed by the plaintiffs are construed liberally and held to a
less stringent standard than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers. Obriecht v. Raemisch, 517 F.3d
489, 491 n.2 (7th Cir. 2008).
The plaintiffs’ original complaint alleging state law claims was dismissed for lack of
jurisdiction and the plaintiffs were given an opportunity to file an amended complaint.
In the amended complaint, plaintiffs Donald Bradshaw and Patricia Bradshaw once again
sue the State of Indiana Department of Revenue, Experian, Transunion, Equifax, and the Delaware
County Sheriff’s Department. Their claims are purportedly brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
To state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must allege the violation of a right
secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States and must show that the alleged deprivation
was committed by a person acting under color of state law. West v. Atkins, 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988).
The amended complaint alleges that the defendants have violated their unalienable rights to life,
liberty, and happiness. Dist. Attorney's Office for Third Judicial Dist. v. Osborne, 557 U.S. 52, 93
(2009) (citing Declaration of Independence ¶ 2 (holding it self-evident that “all men are ...
endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,” among which are “Life, Liberty, and
the pursuit of Happiness”)).
No factual allegations have been alleged which suggest that the defendants took any
specific action against the plaintiff in violation of the plaintiffs’ federally secured rights. The
amended complaint states:
In other words, the amended complaint lacks facial plausibility because there is no factual content
upon which the court can draw a reasonable inference that any defendant is liable for any
misconduct. Accordingly, the amended complaint must be dismissed because it fails to allege that
the plaintiffs were deprived of a federally secured right by a state actor as required to state a claim
under § 1983.
The amended complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted and is
dismissed. Judgment consistent with this Entry shall now issue.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Hon. William T. Lawrence, Judge
United States District Court
Southern District of Indiana
6771 N. County Road 600 W
Gaston, IN 47342
6771 N. County Road 600 West
Gaston, IN 47342
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