United States District Court, M.D. Tennessee, Nashville Division
RONNIE T. BAKER, Plaintiff,
DAVIDSON COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE, et al., Defendants.
WAVERLY D. CRENSHAW, JR. CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
T. Baker, an inmate currently confined at the Davidson County
Sheriff's Office in Nashville, Tennessee, filed this
pro se civil rights complaint under 42 U.S.C. §
1983 against the Davidson County Sheriff's Office, Ruby
Joyner, and Beth Gentry. Plaintiff has also filed an
application to proceed in forma pauperis (Doc. No.
2) and a motion to appoint counsel (Doc. No. 4).
Application to Proceed as a Pauper
prisoner bringing a civil action may be permitted to file
suit without prepaying the filing fee. 28 U.S.C. §
1915(a). Because it appears from Plaintiff's in forma
pauperis application that he lacks sufficient financial
resources from which to pay the full filing fee in advance,
Plaintiff's application (Doc. No. 2) will be granted.
Plaintiff nonetheless remains responsible for paying the full
filing fee. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1). Plaintiff will
therefore be assessed the full $350.00 filing fee, to be paid
as directed in the accompanying Order.
Motion to Appoint Counsel
stated below, this action will be dismissed because
Plaintiff's allegations fail to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted. Accordingly, Plaintiff's motion to
appoint counsel (Doc. No. 4) will be denied as moot.
Court is required to conduct an initial review and dismiss
the complaint if it is frivolous or malicious, fails to state
a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary
relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915A, 1915(e)(2)(B); 42 U.S.C. §
1997e(c)(1). The Court must construe a pro se
plaintiff's complaint liberally, United States v.
Smotherman, 838 F.3d 736 (6th Cir. 2016) (citing
Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007)), and
accept the plaintiff's factual allegations as true unless
they are entirely without credibility. See Thomas v.
Eby, 481 F.3d 434, 437 (6th Cir. 2007) (citing
Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 33 (1992)).
alleges that on June 20, 2017, Jesse Miles-a fellow inmate at
the Davidson County Sheriff's Office
(“DCSO”)-punched Plaintiff in his left eye and
otherwise physically attacked him during recreation time.
(Doc. No. 1 at 5.) Plaintiff and Miles were subsequently
designated “incompatible” to prevent further
confrontation. (Id.) After the attack, Miles
threatened to harm Plaintiff “every time” they
crossed paths. (Id.) DCSO correctional officers
heard Miles's threats. (Id.) On December 20,
2017, Miles “severely attacked” Plaintiff in the
segregation unit while Plaintiff had restraints on his feet,
belly, and wrists. (Id.)
Standard of Review
determine whether a prisoner's complaint “fails to
state a claim on which relief may be granted” under 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915A and 1915(e)(2)(B), the Court
applies the same standard as under Rule 12(b)(6) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Hill v. Lappin,
630 F.3d 468, 470-71 (6th Cir. 2010). The Court therefore
accepts “all well-pleaded allegations in the complaint
as true, [and] ‘consider[s] the factual allegations in
[the] complaint to determine if they plausibly suggest an
entitlement to relief.'” Williams v.
Curtin, 631 F.3d 380, 383 (6th Cir. 2011) (quoting
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 681 (2009)). An
assumption of truth does not, however, extend to allegations
that consist of legal conclusions or “‘naked
assertion[s]' devoid of ‘further factual
enhancement.'” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678
(quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544,
557 (2007)). A pro se pleading must be liberally
construed and “held to less stringent standards than
formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.”
Erickson, 551 U.S. at 94 (citing Estelle v.
Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976)).
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must
set forth facts that, when construed favorably, establish (1)
the deprivation of a right secured by the Constitution or
laws of the United States (2) caused by a person acting under
the color of state law.” Dominguez v. Corr. Med.
Servs., 555 F.3d 543, 549 ...