United States District Court, W.D. Tennessee, Eastern Division
ORDER DISMISSING CASE, CERTIFYING AN APPEAL WOULD NOT
BE TAKEN IN GOOD FAITH AND NOTIFYING PLAINTIFF OF APPELLATE
D. TODD UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
October 10, 2019, Plaintiff John Wesley Sanders, Jr., who is
incarcerated at the Northwest Correctional Complex (NWCX) in
Tiptonville, Tennessee, filed a pro se complaint
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and a motion to proceed
in forma pauperis. (ECF Nos. 1 & 2.) The Court
issued an order on October 15, 2019, 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. 4.) The
Clerk shall record the Defendants as MHM Services (MHM) and
alleges that he suffers from Hepatitis C but has been denied
proper treatment at the NWCX. (ECF No. 1 at PageID 3.) He
alleges that he had lab work completed in August 2018 but was
told in January 2019 that his results were not current.
(Id.) Defendant Collins informed Sanders that his
“scarring level” was at ¶ 1 or 2 but could
not provide the date on which he received that diagnosis.
(Id.) Sanders alleges that Collins told him his
“viral load” was at 1.7 million, which he
believes indicates that his scarring level is higher than a 1
or 2. (Id.) Collins allegedly informed Sanders that
his scarring level would have to be at ¶ 3 or 4 before
he would receive medication to treat his Hepatitis C.
(Id. at PageID 3-4.) Sanders asserts that Collins
lied to him about his condition and that he is not receiving
proper treatment because the state wants to save money.
contends that he is likely to die before receiving treatment.
(Id.) Sanders seeks treatment of his Hepatitis C and
compensatory damages. (Id. at PageID
Court is required to screen prisoner complaints and to
dismiss any complaint, or any portion thereof, if the
(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
28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b); see also 28 U.S.C. §
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.
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))).
filed his complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, which
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 . . . .
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 law.
Adickes v. S.H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 150
allegations amount to a claim of deliberate indifference to
his serious medical needs. The Court reviews claims regarding
the inadequacy of medical care under the Eighth Amendment,
which prohibits cruel and unusual punishments. See
generallyWilson v. Seiter, 501 U.S. 294, 297
(1991). Under Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 104
(1976), “deliberate indifference to serious medical
needs of prisoners constitutes the ‘unnecessary and
wanton infliction of pain” . . . proscribed by the
Eighth Amendment.” However, not “every claim by a
prisoner that he has not received adequate medical treatment
states a violation of the Eighth Amendment.”
Id. at 105. To state a cognizable claim, “a
prisoner must allege acts or omissions sufficiently ...