United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Tacoma
W. CHRISTEL UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
William James Mathew Wallace II, proceeding pro se
and in forma pauperis, filed this civil rights
complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Having
reviewed and screened Plaintiff's Complaint under 28
U.S.C. § 1915A, the Court declines to serve
Plaintiff's Complaint but provides Plaintiff leave to
file an amended pleading by June 16, 2019 to cure the
deficiencies identified herein. The Court also denies
Plaintiff's Motion for Appointment of Counsel (Dkt. 15)
and Motion for Subpoena (Dkt. 16).
who is incarcerated at the Los Angeles County Men's
Central Jail, alleges Defendants Naphcare Medical
(“Naphcare”) and Pierce County Jail Sheriff's
Department acted with deliberate indifference to his serious
medical needs in violation of the Eighth Amendment and the
Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). Dkt. 13.
Plaintiff alleges in 2017 he was arrested and confined at the
Pierce County Jail (“the Jail”). Dkt. 13 at 2-3;
14 at 2. Plaintiff alleges he had broken his leg prior to his
arrest and was under the care of an orthopedic surgeon at the
time. Id. Plaintiff alleges upon his placement in
the Jail, he did not receive any accommodations for his leg
and was housed on an upper bunk. Id. Plaintiff
alleges he requested medical attention for three weeks but
was not seen by the Jail's contracted medical provider,
Defendant Naphcare. Id. After the three-week wait,
Plaintiff alleges an x-ray was taken and a cast was put on leg.
Id. Plaintiff alleges the individual who put on the
cast stated she didn't know what she was doing and her
co-worker assisted her with the “help of a picture
book.” Dkt. 14 at 2. Plaintiff alleges he was given
crutches and moved to the Jail's medical unit.
Id. Plaintiff alleges during his time in the medical
unit, he was given incorrect medications and confused with
another prisoner. Id. Plaintiff alleges he went to
the medical clinic for a check-up and the splint was
replaced. Dkt. 14. at 2.
alleges four weeks later another x-ray was taken.
Id. Plaintiff alleges the x-ray technician told him
his leg was still broken, and it was a complicated break.
Id. Two days later, Plaintiff alleges he saw a
doctor for the first time, who told Plaintiff his leg was no
longer broken. Dkt. 13 at 3-4; 14 at 2. Plaintiff alleges the
doctor removed Plaintiff's cast and took the crutches.
Dkt. 13 at 4; Dkt. 14 at 2. Plaintiff also alleges he fell in
the medical unit and hit his head when he attempted to put
weight on his leg. Dkt. 14 at 2. Plaintiff alleges medical
was called, and his vitals were checked. Id.
alleges he was moved from the medical unit into general
population at the Jail, placed on an upper bunk, unable to
walk, and in severe pain. Dkt. 14 at 2. Plaintiff alleges for
the next six weeks he was ignored and only provided a muscle
rub for his leg. Id. Plaintiff alleges the entire
time he was housed at the Jail he was without access to ADA
compliant showers or cells and no accommodations were made.
Id. at 3.
alleges he has now seen two orthopedic surgeons who have
determined Plaintiff has a non-union of his medial malleolus
of the left tibia, and both surgeons stated this is because
of the delay in proper treatment. Id. at 3.
Plaintiff alleges he will never be able to walk normally
again and without pain. Id. Plaintiff alleges he has
been approved to have corrective surgery which will entail a
bone graft and screws to re-attach his bones. Id.
Plaintiff alleges he now uses a wheelchair for mobility.
Plaintiff was transferred from the Jail to the Department of
Corrections (“DOC”) he alleges he was sent
without any medical records, transported improperly, and
forced to walk. Dkt. 13 at 4.
seeks $1 billion dollars in damages. Dkt. 13 at 5.
the Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1995, the Court is
required to screen complaints brought by prisoners seeking
relief against a governmental entity or officer or employee
of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). The
Court must “dismiss the complaint, or any portion of
the complaint, if the complaint: (1) is frivolous, malicious,
or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted;
or (2) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune
from such relief.” Id. at (b); 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(2); see Barren v. Harrington, 152
F.3d 1193 (9th Cir. 1998).
Section 1983 Claims
order to state a claim for relief under 42 U.S.C. §
1983, a plaintiff must sufficiently allege that: (1) he
suffered a violation of rights protected by the Constitution
or created by federal statute, and (2) the violation was
proximately caused by a person acting under color of state
law. See Crumpton v. Gates, 947 F.2d 1418, 1420 (9th
Cir. 1991). The first step in a § 1983 claim is
therefore to identify the specific constitutional right
allegedly infringed. Albright v. Oliver, 510 U.S.
266, 271 (1994). To satisfy the second step, a plaintiff must
allege facts showing how individually named defendants
caused, or personally participated in causing, the harm
alleged in the complaint. See Arnold v. IBM, 637
F.2d 1350, 1355 (9th Cir. 1981).
alleges Defendants violated his rights under the Eighth
Amendment when he was denied medical treatment for his broken
leg and received incorrect medication. Dkts. 13, 14. Based on
the allegations in the Complaint, Plaintiff was not
incarcerated following a formal adjudication of guilt at the
time of the alleged violations. Dkts. 13, 14. As such,
conditions of confinement imposed on him are governed by the
Fourteenth Amendment Due Process Clause. Bell v.
Wolfish, 441 U.S. 520, 535 n. 16 (1979); Frost v.
Agnos, 152 F.3d 1124, 1128 (9th Cir. 1998).
“Because pretrial detainees' rights under the
Fourteenth Amendment are comparable to prisoners' ...