Bradford v. Albercook et al
ORDER Granting 16 Motion for More Definite Statement - Signed by Magistrate Judge Mona K. Majzoub. (LBar)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN
DANIEL L. BRADFORD,
CIVIL ACTION NO. 16-cv-12214
DISTRICT JUDGE TERRENCE G. BERG
CAREN ALBERCOOK, et al.,
MAGISTRATE JUDGE MONA K. MAJZOUB
OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANTS’
MOTION FOR MORE DEFINITE STATEMENT 
Plaintiff Daniel L. Bradford filed this pro se civil rights action on June 15, 2016, pursuant
to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, alleging that Defendants Caren Albercook, Connie Ives, James Richardson,1
and Eric Walton denied him adequate medical care in violation of his Eighth Amendment rights.
(Docket no. 1.) This matter is before the Court on a Motion for More Definite Statement filed by
the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC) Defendants: Connie Ives, James Richardson,
and Eric Walton.2 (Docket no. 16.) Plaintiff has not responded to the Motion, and the time for
response has passed. This action has been referred to the undersigned for all pretrial purposes.
(Docket no. 18.) The Court has reviewed the pleadings and dispenses with oral argument
pursuant to Eastern District of Michigan Local Rule 7.1(f). The Court is now ready to rule
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A).
Plaintiff named “J. Richardson” as a defendant in the Complaint, who has since been identified as James
Richardson. (See docket nos. 1, 15.)
Also pending before the Court are Defendant Caren Albercook’s Motion to Dismiss (docket no. 17) and Plaintiff’s
Motion in Opposition of Summary Judgment (docket no. 20), which the Court will address separately in a report and
With regard to substance, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure only require that a
complaint include “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to
relief.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2). Nevertheless, a party may file a motion for a more definite
statement if the complaint is still “so vague or ambiguous that the [responding] party cannot
reasonably prepare a response.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(e). The MDOC Defendants request that the
Court order Plaintiff to file an amended complaint or a brief that provides a more definite
statement because the Complaint is so vague and ambiguous that responding to it would require
a large amount of guesswork and speculation. (Docket no. 16.)
The statement of facts in Plaintiff’s Complaint consists entirely of the following factual
“Inadequate medical care by Dr. Albercook.”
“Bias and prejudicial actions by RN Connie Ives who is Health Unit Manager.”
“C/O J. Richardson taking medical accommendation [sic] papers w/no penalogical
justification and acting in bias and racist behavior.”
“Eric Walton (R.U.M.) knows policy mandates medical details be honored yet allows
staff & himself to violate the policy.”
(Docket no. 1 at 3.) Plaintiff then sets forth the following claims:
“Eight[h] Amendment right to have adequate medical care and to not be subjected to any
increased risk of a permanent impairment or the development of a serious disease by the
defendants[’] acts or omissions.”
“Right to be treated humanly [sic] and equally regardless of race or status.”
The Court agrees with Defendants that the Complaint, as written, is so vague and
ambiguous that Defendants could not possibly frame a meaningful responsive pleading. The
Complaint is substantially devoid of factual allegations and fails to inform the Court or
Defendants of how or when they denied Plaintiff adequate medical care or otherwise violated his
rights. Essentially, the Complaint fails to provide Defendants with sufficient notice of the claims
against which they must defend. The Court acknowledges that Plaintiff sets forth several factual
allegations and claims against Defendants in his Motion in Opposition of Summary Judgment
that provide some detail regarding the allegations in the Complaint.
(See docket no. 20.)
However, it was procedurally improper for Plaintiff to make those allegations for the first time in
a Motion in Opposition of Summary Judgment; such allegations would be properly pled in an
amended complaint. The Court will, therefore, grant the MDOC Defendants’ Motion for More
Definite Statement (docket no. 16) and will order Plaintiff to file an amended complaint that
complies with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, specifically Rule 8(a), within thirty (30)
days of this Opinion and Order. The Amended Complaint must clearly and sufficiently explain
what each defendant allegedly did to violate Plaintiff’s constitutional or statutory rights and how
each defendant is involved with each claim. Failure to comply with this Order may result in
sanctions, including dismissal of Plaintiff’s claims.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
NOTICE TO THE PARTIES
Pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(a), the parties have a period of fourteen days from the date
of this Order within which to file any written appeal to the District Judge as may be permissible
under 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1).
Dated: January 23, 2017
s/ Mona K. Majzoub
MONA K. MAJZOUB
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
PROOF OF SERVICE
I hereby certify that a copy of this Opinion and Order was served upon Plaintiff and
counsel of record on this date.
Dated: January 23, 2017
s/ Lisa C. Bartlett
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