Patterson v. Earls et al
OPINION MEMORANDUM AND ORDER IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiffs motion to proceed in forma pauperis [ECF No. 2] is GRANTED. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the plaintiff must pay an initial filing fee of $25 within thirty (30) days of the date of t his Order. Plaintiff is instructed to make his remittance payable to Clerk, United States District Court, and to include upon it: (1) his name; (2) his prison registration number; (3) the case number; and (4) that the remittance is for an original proceeding. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that this action is DISMISSED without prejudice. An Order of Dismissal will be filed forthwith.. Signed by District Judge Henry Edward Autrey on 11/14/16. (CLA)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
ALAN EARLS, et al.,
No. 4:16CV1750 HEA
OPINION, MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Plaintiff, a prisoner, seeks leave to proceed in forma pauperis in this civil action under 42
U.S.C. § 1983. Having reviewed plaintiff’s financial information, the Court assesses a partial
initial filing fee of $25, which is twenty percent of his average monthly deposit. See 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(b). Additionally, the complaint is dismissed under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e).
Standard of Review
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e), the Court is required to dismiss a complaint filed in forma
pauperis if it is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.
To state a claim for relief, a complaint must plead more than “legal conclusions” and
“[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action [that are] supported by mere
conclusory statements.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).
A plaintiff must
demonstrate a plausible claim for relief, which is more than a “mere possibility of misconduct.”
Id. at 679. “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.” Id. at 678. Determining whether a complaint states a plausible claim for relief is a
context-specific task that requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial experience and
common sense. Id. at 679.
When reviewing a complaint under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e), the Court accepts the well-pled
facts as true. Furthermore, the Court liberally construes the allegations.
Plaintiff brings this action against Alan Earls, Deputy Division Director, Division of
Adult Institutions; Troy Steele, Warden, Eastern Reception Diagnostic and Correctional Center
(ERDCC); and Douglas Prudden, Warden, Tipton Correctional Center (TCC).
While plaintiff was in custody at ERDCC, he had a seizure. He says a correctional
officer assaulted him while he was seizing. He was taken to the hospital. When he returned to
ERDCC he was placed in administrative segregation. He was written up for drug use and
assaulting prison staff.
He was ordered to submit a blood sample, and he refused. He complains that his blood
was taken involuntarily.
He was later transferred to TCC, where he had another seizure. He says he was not given
enough seizure medicine.
According to his exhibits, defendants only involvement was to deny his grievances.
“Liability under § 1983 requires a causal link to, and direct responsibility for, the alleged
deprivation of rights.” Madewell v. Roberts, 909 F.2d 1203, 1208 (8th Cir. 1990); see Ashcroft
v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 676 (2009) (“Because vicarious liability is inapplicable to Bivens and
§ 1983 suits, a plaintiff must plead that each Government-official defendant, through the
official’s own individual actions, has violated the Constitution.”); Camberos v. Branstad, 73
F.3d 174, 176 (8th Cir. 1995) (“a general responsibility for supervising the operations of a prison
is insufficient to establish the personal involvement required to support liability.”); George v.
Smith, 507 F. 3d 605, 609 (7th Cir. 2007) (“Only persons who cause or participate in the
[constitutional] violations are responsible.
Ruling against a prisoner on an administrative
complaint does not cause or contribute to the violation.”). As a result, the complaint fails to state
a claim upon which relief can be granted.
Additionally, plaintiff sues defendants in their official capacities. Naming a government
official in his or her official capacity is the equivalent of naming the government entity that
employs the official, in this case the State of Missouri. Will v. Michigan Dep=t of State Police,
491 U.S. 58, 71 (1989). “[N]either a State nor its officials acting in their official capacity are
>persons= under ' 1983.” Id. As a result, the complaint does not state a claim for this reason as
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff’s motion to proceed in forma pauperis [ECF
No. 2] is GRANTED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the plaintiff must pay an initial filing fee of $25
within thirty (30) days of the date of this Order. Plaintiff is instructed to make his remittance
payable to “Clerk, United States District Court,” and to include upon it: (1) his name; (2) his
prison registration number; (3) the case number; and (4) that the remittance is for an original
Prisoners must pay the full amount of the $350 filing fee. After payment of the initial partial
filing fee, the prisoner is required to make monthly payments of 20 percent of the preceding
month’s income credited to the prisoner’s account. The agency having custody of the prisoner
will deduct the payments and forward them to the Court each time the amount in the account
exceeds $10. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(2).
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that this action is DISMISSED without prejudice.
An Order of Dismissal will be filed forthwith.
Dated this 14th day of November, 2016
HENRY EDWARD AUTREY
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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