Swenby, Travis et al v. Dunn County Human Services
ORDER dismissing complaint without prejudice pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 8. Amended complaint due 6/28/2013. Signed by District Judge William M. Conley on 6/4/2013. (elc),(ps)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF WISCONSIN
TRAVIS SWENBY and
DUNN COUNTY HUMAN SERVICES,
In this proposed civil action, plaintiffs Travis and Michelle Swenby are seeking leave
to proceed in forma pauperis under 28 U.S.C. § 1915.
Magistrate Judge Crocker has
determined that plaintiffs may proceed without prepayment of costs. The next step is to
screen the complaint to determine whether plaintiffs’ proposed action is (1) frivolous or
malicious, (2) fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted, or (3) seeks money
damages from a defendant who is immune from relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2).
Plaintiffs’ complaint will be dismissed without prejudice because the complaint does
not allege any facts. Instead, plaintiffs simply refer to 71 pages of documents, which appear
to be petitions and orders from the Dunn County Circuit Court about the custody of
plaintiffs’ minor daughters. Plaintiffs do not explain how these documents show their rights
Plaintiffs’ apparent attempt to incorporate these exhibits as their complaint does not
comply with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8, which states that a complaint must set forth a
short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief. This
means that "the complaint must describe the claim in sufficient detail to give the defendant
fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the grounds upon which it rests." EEOC v. Concentra
Health Services, Inc., 496 F.3d 773, 776 (7th Cir. 2007). Neither the court nor defendant are
required sift through plaintiffs’ exhibits to guess about the nature of plaintiffs’ claims.
Because the complaint does not comply with Rule 8, the court will dismiss it without
Plaintiffs will have until June 28, 2013, to file an amended complaint that complies
with Rule 8. Any amended complaint must contain short, plain statements of fact made in
numbered paragraphs, explaining what happened to make plaintiffs believe their rights were
violated, when it happened and who did it. In other words, plaintiffs should write their
complaint as if they are telling a story to someone who knows nothing about their situation.
Plaintiffs should include all of their allegations in the amended complaint, rather than simply
submitting documents or supplements. If plaintiffs do this, the court will take the amended
complaint under advisement for screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). If plaintiffs
fail to respond to this order by June 28, 2013, the case will be closed.
IT IS ORDERED that plaintiffs Travis and Michelle Swenby’s complaint is
DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE for failure to comply with Fed. R. Civ. P. 8. Plaintiffs
may have until June 28, 2013, to submit a proposed amended complaint. If plaintiffs submit
a revised complaint by that date, the court will take that complaint under advisement for
screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). If plaintiffs fail to respond by that date, then
the clerk of court is directed to close this case for plaintiffs’ failure to prosecute.
Entered this 4th day of June, 2013.
BY THE COURT:
WILLIAM M. CONLEY
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