ANDERSON v. CAMDEN COUNTY JAIL
OPINION FILED. Signed by Chief Judge Jerome B. Simandle on 11/16/16. (js)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY
HONORABLE JEROME B. SIMANDLE
No. 16-cv-06204 (JBS-AMD)
CAMDEN COUNTY JAIL,
Tonya Anderson, Plaintiff Pro Se
30 Haddon Ave Apt. 16C
Collingswood, NJ 08108
SIMANDLE, Chief District Judge:
Before the Court is an amended civil rights complaint
submitted by Plaintiff Tonya Anderson against the Camden County
Jail (“CCJ”). Amended Complaint, Docket Entry 5.
The Court dismissed Plaintiff’s original complaint for
failure to state a claim pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)
as the sole named defendant, CCJ, was not a “state actor” within
the meaning of 42 U.S.C. § 1983. See Opinion, Docket Entry 3 ¶
5. The Court granted leave to amend in order to allow Plaintiff
to name specific state actors who were personally involved in
the alleged unconstitutional conditions of confinement. Id. ¶ 6.
The Court further advised Plaintiff that an amended
complaint would have to allege “sufficient factual matter” to
show that her claim was facially plausible. Fowler v. UPMS
Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210 (3d Cir. 2009) (citation omitted).
Specifically, the complaint would have to plead sufficient facts
supporting a reasonable inference that the conditions of
Plaintiff’s confinement either violated the cruel and unusual
provision of the Eighth Amendment or the Due Process Clause of
the Fourteenth Amendment. Opinion ¶¶ 7-9.
The amended complaint does not address the
deficiencies noted by the Court. It does not name responsible
persons, nor does it provide sufficient facts for the Court to
reasonably infer that either amendment has been violated as it
merely repeats the original allegation that Plaintiff slept in
an overcrowded cell. Amended Complaint § III. As previously
noted, the mere fact that an individual is lodged temporarily in
a cell with more persons than its intended design does not rise
to the level of a constitutional violation. See Rhodes v.
Chapman, 452 U.S. 337, 348–50 (1981); Carson v. Mulvihill, 488
F. App'x 554, 560 (3d Cir. 2012) (“[M]ere double-bunking does
not constitute punishment, because there is no ‘one man, one
cell principle lurking in the Due Process Clause of the Fifth
Amendment.’” (quoting Bell v. Wolfish, 441 U.S. 520, 542
(1979)); Hubbard v. Taylor, 538 F.3d 229, 233 (3d Cir. 2008)
(noting due process analysis requires courts to consider whether
the totality of the conditions “cause inmates to endure such
genuine privations and hardship over an extended period of time,
that the adverse conditions become excessive in relation to the
purposes assigned to them.”). The amended complaint must
therefore be dismissed for failure to state a claim.
Generally, “plaintiffs who file complaints subject to
dismissal under [§ 1915] should receive leave to amend unless
amendment would be inequitable or futile.” Grayson v. Mayview
State Hosp., 293 F.3d 103, 114 (3d Cir. 2002). This Court denies
further leave to amend as the amended complaint is barred by the
statute of limitations, which is governed by New Jersey's twoyear limitations period for personal injury.1 See Wilson v.
Garcia, 471 U.S. 261, 276 (1985); Dique v. N.J. State Police,
603 F.3d 181, 185 (3d Cir. 2010). The accrual date of a § 1983
action is determined by federal law, however. Wallace v. Kato,
549 U.S. 384, 388 (2007); Montanez v. Sec'y Pa. Dep't of Corr.,
773 F.3d 472, 480 (3d Cir. 2014).
The amended complaint indicates Plaintiff was confined
in the CCJ in 1986, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1999-2000, 2001, and 2003.
The allegedly unconstitutional conditions of confinement at CCCF
“Although the running of the statute of limitations is
ordinarily an affirmative defense, where that defense is obvious
from the face of the complaint and no development of the record
is necessary, a court may dismiss a time-barred complaint sua
sponte under § 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) for failure to
state a claim.” Ostuni v. Wa Wa's Mart, 532 F. App’x 110, 111–12
(3d Cir. 2013) (per curiam).
would have been immediately apparent to Plaintiff at the time of
her detention; therefore, the statute of limitations for
Plaintiff’s claims expired in 2005, at the latest. The complaint
will be dismissed with prejudice, and the Court will deny leave
to amend as there are no grounds for equitable tolling of the
statute of limitations.2 Ostuni v. Wa Wa's Mart, 532 F. App’x
110, 112 (3d Cir. 2013) (per curiam) (affirming dismissal with
prejudice due to expiration of statute of limitations); Grayson,
293 F.3d 103, 114 (3d Cir. 2002) (holding leave to amend should
generally be granted unless “leave to amend unless amendment
would be inequitable or futile”).
For the reasons stated above, the complaint is
dismissed with prejudice for failure to state a claim.
An appropriate order follows.
November 16, 2016
s/ Jerome B. Simandle
JEROME B. SIMANDLE
Chief U.S. District Judge
Equitable tolling “is only appropriate ‘(1) where the defendant
has actively misled the plaintiff respecting the plaintiff's
cause of action; (2) where the plaintiff in some extraordinary
way has been prevented from asserting his or her rights; or (3)
where the plaintiff has timely asserted his or her rights
mistakenly in the wrong forum.’” Omar v. Blackman, 590 F. App’x
162, 166 (3d Cir. 2014) (quoting Santos ex rel. Beato v. United
States, 559 F.3d 189, 197 (3d Cir. 2009)).
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