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Franklin v. Quality Correctional Health Care

United States District Court, W.D. Tennessee, Eastern Division

December 10, 2019

ERIC GLENN FRANKLIN, Plaintiff,
v.
QUALITY CORRECTIONAL HEALTH CARE, Defendant.

          ORDER TO MODIFY THE DOCKET, DISMISSING COMPLAINT, GRANTING LEAVE TO AMEND AND DENYING MOTION TO SUBPOENA

          JAMES D. TODD UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         On September 24, 2019, Plaintiff Eric Glenn Franklin, who at the time of filing was incarcerated at the Madison County Criminal Justice Complex (CJC) in Jackson, Tennessee, filed a pro se complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Quality Correctional Health Care and a motion to proceed in forma pauperis. (ECF Nos. 1 & 2.) After Franklin filed the necessary documents, the Court issued an order granting leave to proceed in forma pauperis and assessing the civil filing fee pursuant to the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA), 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(a)-(b). (ECF No. 9.)

         On November 4, 2019, the Clerk docketed a letter from the Madison County Sheriff's Office stating that Franklin had been released to the Henderson County Jail on October 27, 2019. (ECF No. 10.) The order granting leave to proceed in forma pauperis and assessing the filing fee was returned undeliverable on November 18, 2019. (ECF No. 11.) However, on November 22, 2019, the Clerk docketed a letter in Franklin's other pending case in this Court, the envelope for which shows he has been released from custody and includes his new address. See Franklin v. Criminal Justice Center, et al., No. 19-1186-JDT-cgc, ECF No. 11.[1]

         Franklin alleges that “[t]he Medical Staff” has handled his medications “on a dirty flap that has had food trays on, milk and tea spilt on it[, ]” and rusty water and mold on it. (ECF No. 1 at PageID 2.) He alleges the staff gives him medication meant for other inmates and have given him shots for his diabetes through the flap, which he alleges “is totally unsanitary.” (Id.) Franklin alleges he has submitted sick-call requests to see the doctor, but “all they do is tell me that I am on the list.” (Id.) Franklin alleges he has not yet seen a doctor “about any of this.” (Id.)

         Franklin wants his diabetes shots given in a “sanitary[, ] clean environment where there is no black mold or unclean sanitation”; his medication “to be properly checked before they pass them out, [and] to advise us of any med changes”; an adequate grievance procedure “where they respond back in a timely fashion”; and $1.5 million in compensatory damages. (Id. at PageID 3.)

         The Court is required to screen prisoner complaints and to dismiss any complaint, or any portion thereof, 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.

28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b); see also 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).

         In assessing whether the complaint in this case states a claim on which relief may be granted, the standards under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), as stated in Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 677-79 (2009), and in Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-57 (2007), are applied. Hill v. Lappin, 630 F.3d 468, 470-71 (6th Cir. 2010). The Court accepts the complaint's “well-pleaded” factual allegations as true and then determines whether the allegations “plausibly suggest an entitlement to relief.'” Williams v. Curtin, 631 F.3d 380, 383 (6th Cir. 2011) (quoting Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 681). Conclusory allegations “are not entitled to the assumption of truth, ” and legal conclusions “must be supported by factual allegations.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679. Although a complaint need only contain “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief, ” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2), Rule 8 nevertheless requires factual allegations to make a “‘showing,' rather than a blanket assertion, of entitlement to relief.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555 n.3.

         “Pro se complaints are to be held ‘to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers,' and should therefore be liberally construed.” Williams, 631 F.3d at 383 (quoting Martin v. Overton, 391 F.3d 710, 712 (6th Cir. 2004)). Pro se litigants, however, are not exempt from the requirements of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Wells v. Brown, 891 F.2d 591, 594 (6th Cir. 1989); see also Brown v. Matauszak, 415 Fed.Appx. 608, 612, 613 (6th Cir. Jan. 31, 2011) (affirming dismissal of pro se complaint for failure to comply with “unique pleading requirements” and stating “a court cannot ‘create a claim which [a plaintiff] has not spelled out in his pleading'” (quoting Clark v. Nat'l Travelers Life Ins. Co., 518 F.2d 1167, 1169 (6th Cir. 1975))).

         Franklin filed his complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, which provides:

Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory or the District of Columbia, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress . . . .

         To state a claim under § 1983, a plaintiff must allege two elements: (1) a deprivation of rights secured by the “Constitution and laws” of the United States (2) committed by a defendant acting under color of state ...


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