BAYLOR v. PHILADELPHIA PRISON SYSTEM et al

Filing 9

MEMORANDUM AND/OR OPINION. SIGNED BY HONORABLE EDMUND V. LUDWIG ON 8/11/10. 8/11/10 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED TO PRO SE PETITIONER AND E-MAILED. (jpd)

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT F O R THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA T R O Y BAYLOR v. P H IL A D E L P H IA PRISON SYSTEM, et al. : : : : : C IV IL ACTION N O . 10-cv-1468 MEMORANDUM L u d w ig , J. A u g u s t 11, 2010 T h is is a prisoner civil rights case, 42 U.S.C. 1983; jurisdiction is federal question, 2 8 U.S.C. 1331. The pro se complaint alleges that on September 19, 2009, plaintiff Troy B a y lo r reported to sick call to receive his medication. Complaint, section II. Defendant Judy S h a w is alleged to have given plaintiff the wrong medication at that time. Id. As a result, p la in tiff became ill. Id. Defendants Philadelphia Prison System and Warden Karen Bryant1 m o v e to dismiss plaintiff's claims against them.2 For the following reasons, the motion will Also named as a defendant is Judy Shaw. The docket reflects that plaintiff attempted to serve Shaw at the Philadelphia Industrial Correction Center, but the summons was returned unexecuted with a notation that Shaw was not a City employee. Docket no. 6. When considering a motion to dismiss under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6), the court must "`accept as true all allegations in the complaint and all reasonable inferences that can be drawn therefrom, and view them in the light most favorable to the non-moving party.'" Yellowbird Bus Co. v. Lexington Ins. Co., 2010 WL 2766987, at *3 (E.D. Pa., filed July 12, 2010), quoting DeBenedictis v. Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., 492 F.3d 209, 215 (3d Cir. 2007). The complaint must "put Defendants on notice of the essential elements of Plaintiff's cause of action and raise a right to relief above the speculative level." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). "A pleading that offers `labels and conclusions' or a `formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do.'" Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S. Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009), quoting Twombly. The complaint must contain "more than the-defendant-unlawfully-harmedme accusation." Id. There is a difference between alleging an entitlement to relief - which, by itself, is not sufficient - and showing, through factual allegations, that the entitlement exists. Iqbal, supra, at 1950. Only a complaint that includes the latter will survive a motion to dismiss. 2 1 b e granted. W ith respect to the Philadelphia Prison System, it is a municipal agency of the City o f Philadelphia and, as such, has no separate existence of its own and is not subject to suit. G riffith v. Philadelphia Prison Systems, 2001 WL 876804, at *1 n.1 (E.D. Pa., filed May 18, 2 0 0 1 ), quoting 53 P.S. 16257 ("all suits growing out of [PPS's] transactions . . .shall be in th e name of the City of Philadelphia."). Accordingly, all claims against the Philadelphia P r is o n System are dismissed. W ith respect to defendant Bryant, the complaint does not contain any allegations a g a i n s t her, but merely names her as a defendant. "A defendant in a civil rights action must h a v e personal involvement in the alleged wrongs; liability cannot be predicated solely on the o p era tio n of respondeat superior." Rode v. Dellarciprete, 845 F.2d 1195, 1207 (3d Cir. 1 1 9 5 ), citing Parratt v. Taylor, 452 U.S. 527, 537 (1981). Thus, the fact that defendant B ry a n t is employed in a supervisory capacity does not subject her to liability based solely on th e actions of others. To state a cognizable claim against Bryant, the complaint must allege fa c ts showing that she participated in violating plaintiff's rights, or directed others to violate th e m , or that she had actual knowledge of and acquiesced in the violation. Baker v. Monroe T w p ., 50 F.3d 1186, 1190-91 (3d Cir. 1995). It does not do so, and therefore, plaintiff's c la im s against her must be dismissed. B Y THE COURT: /s/ Edmund V. Ludwig Edmund V. Ludwig, J. 2

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