United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Tacoma
ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE OR AMEND THE COMPLAINT
Theresa L. Fricke United States Magistrate Judge
This matter is before the Court on plaintiff’s filing
of a proposed civil rights complaint. Dkt. 1. In light of the
deficiencies in the complaint discussed herein, however, the
undersigned will not direct service of the complaint at this
time. Plaintiff, though, will be provided the opportunity by
March 9, 2018 to show cause why the
complaint should not be dismissed or to file an amended
is incarcerated at the Washington State Penitentiary. He sues
Tim Trasher. Dkt. 1. He asserts that defendant violated
his rights under the Fourth and Eighth Amendments. Dkt. 1, p.
3. He requests damages and injunctive relief. Dkt. 1, p. 7.
Court is required to screen complaints brought by prisoners
seeking relief against a governmental entity or officer or
employee of a governmental entity. See 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(a). The Court must dismiss a complaint or
portion thereof if it: (1) is frivolous or malicious; (2)
fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted; or
(3) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from
such relief. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1), (2).
The fact that a prisoner pays the filing fee is no barrier to
a court, when dismissing the case as frivolous, directing
that the dismissal count as a strike under 28 U.S.C. §
1915(g). Belanus v. Clark, 796 F.3d 1021, 1028 (9th
8(a)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
“requires a complaint to include a short and plain
statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled
to relief, in order to give the defendant fair notice of what
the claim is and the grounds upon which it rests.”
Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 554 (2007)
(citing Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41 (1957)). To
avoid dismissal for failure to state a claim, a plaintiff
must include more than “naked assertions,”
“labels and conclusions” or “a formulaic
recitation of the elements of a cause of action.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555-557. A claim upon which the
court can grant relief has facial plausibility; 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.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
Court declines to serve Mr. Griffin’s complaint because
it contains fatal deficiencies that, if not addressed, will
lead to a recommendation of dismissal of the entire action
for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be
granted. 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2)(b)(ii),
complaint is brought under § 1983. To state a claim
under § 1983, a plaintiff must allege facts showing (1)
the conduct about which he complains was committed by a
person acting under the color of state law; and (2) the
conduct deprived him of a federal constitutional or statutory
right. Wood v. Ostrander, 879 F.2d 583, 587 (9th
Cir. 1989). In addition, to state a valid § 1983 claim,
a plaintiff must allege that he suffered a specific injury as
a result of the conduct of a particular defendant, and he
must allege an affirmative link between the injury and the
conduct of that defendant. Rizzo v. Goode, 423 U.S.
362, 371-72, 377 (1976).
person named as a defendant was a supervisory official,
plaintiff must either state that the defendant personally
participated in the constitutional deprivation (and tell the
Court the five things listed above), or plaintiff must state,
if he can do so in good faith, that the defendant was aware
of the similar widespread abuses, but with deliberate
indifference to plaintiff’s constitutional rights,
failed to take action to prevent further harm to plaintiff
and also state facts to support this claim. See Monell v.
New York City Department of Social Services, 436 U.S.
658, 691 (1978).
plaintiff appears to allege a number of acts and omissions
that prison staff committed on April 7 and April 8, 2017 and
that could amount to constitutional violations, including:
placing him overnight in a holding cell during winter with a
single blanket and the door open; videotaping him
masturbating; assaulting him through his cell door; and
improperly strip searching him.
these fact allegations are unclear and fail to make any
connections regarding which defendants allegedly committed
certain acts or omitted to act, what connection the act or
omission has to any particular constitutional deprivation or
harm, and when those alleged acts or omissions occurred.
While plaintiff names only Tim Trasher as a defendant, his
complaint contains allegations that seem to raise claims
against other prison staff whom the plaintiff alleges were
also involved in the alleged violations. See Dkt. 1,
pp. 4-7. The allegations contain only three references to
Trasher, and none alleges a facially plausible claim that he
caused a violation of plaintiff’s constitutional
rights. Dkt. 1, pp. 4-6.
Court cannot reasonably discharge its screening
responsibility under § 1915A until plaintiff complies
with the pleading requirements set forth in Rule 8. Plaintiff
must therefore provide a “short and plain statement of
the claim,” stating how specific acts or omissions by