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Dixon v. Corrections Department

filed*fn*: March 2, 1992.

DANIEL STEVE DIXON, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
CORRECTIONS DEPARTMENT, STATE OF CALIFORNIA; ROBERT BORG, WARDEN, ET AL.; DEBORAH ABLIN, M.D., INDIVIDUALLY AND IN HER OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS AN EMPLOYEE OF THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.



Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California. Edward J. Garcia, District Judge, Presiding. D.C. No. CV-90-00026-EJG

Before: Canby, Norris, and Leavy, Circuit Judges.

MEMORANDUM

Daniel Steve Dixon, a California state prisoner, appeals pro se and in forma pauperis the district court's order dismissing his 42 U.S.C. § 1983 civil rights action pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim for which relief can be granted.*fn1 Dixon contends the defendants violated his civil rights because they (1) were deliberately indifferent to his medical needs; (2) exposed him to dangerous work conditions; and (3) retaliated against him in his work assignment for asserting his right to medical attention. We have jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1291. We review de novo, Swift v. Lewis, 901 F.2d 730, 732 (9th Cir. 1990), and affirm.

I

Deliberate Indifference to Medical Needs

A. Failure to Diagnose and Treat Injuries

Dixon contends that defendants Ablin, Neubert, and Murphy were deliberately indifferent because they failed to diagnose and treat the injuries Dixon suffered when he fell. This contention lacks merit.

The fact that the defendants failed to treat Dixon's injuries cannot alone support a deliberate indifference claim. Because Dixon has not alleged any other act or failure to act by the defendants which evidences the alleged deliberate indifference, the district court correctly dismissed Dixon's claims against them. See Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 104-06 (1976); Broughton v. Cutter Labs., 622 F.2d 458, 460 (9th Cir. 1981) (per curiam).

B. Delay in Providing Proper Treatment

Dixon contends defendant Borg was deliberately indifferent because Borg denied and unreasonably delayed Dixon's access to proper medical treatment. Dixon alleged, however, that his requests for treatment by nonprison doctors were denied by prison staff members, not Borg. Although he also alleged that Borg failed to investigate his medical problems, he did not allege that Borg knew further investigation was necessary. Because Dixon's allegations do not show that Borg either participated in or directed any alleged constitutional violation or that Borg knew of a violation and failed to prevent it, the district court properly dismissed the claim of deliberate indifference against Borg. See Taylor v. List, 880 F.2d 1040, 1045 (9th Cir. 1989).

Dixon contends that defendants Lima, Textor, and Reagan were deliberately indifferent because they delayed his proper medical treatment. He alleged the delay in treatment caused him additional harm in the form of pain and his subsequent "blackout" due to heart problems. Nevertheless, Dixon's allegations do not show that these defendants knew of his injuries. Thus, even accepting Dixon's allegations as true, he has not stated a deliberate indifference claim against these defendants. See Hunt v. Dental Dep't, 865 F.2d 198, 200 (9th Cir. 1989) (prison officials were aware plaintiff was suffering from severe pain and bleeding gums caused by loss of dentures); Shapley v. Nevada Bd. of State Prison Comm'rs, 766 F.2d 404, 407 (9th Cir. 1985) (per curiam) (officials knew plaintiff required knee surgery; delay resulted in permanent impairment).

II

Exposure to Dangerous Work Conditions

Dixon contends that defendant Borg and a "John Doe" defendant violated his civil rights by exposing him to dangerous work conditions. He alleged that these defendants failed to maintain the grill gate he had been holding on to, and which broke, when he ...


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