United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
William T. Lawrence, Judge
Directing Further Proceedings
plaintiff shall have through November 7,
2016, in which to either pay the $400.00 filing fee
for this action or demonstrate that he lacks the financial
ability to do so. If he seeks leave to proceed in forma
pauperis, his request must be accompanied by a copy of
the transactions associated with his institution trust
account for the 6-month period preceding the filing of this
action on September 26, 2016.
Motion of 1983 Prisoner Complaint to Show Cause, the
plaintiff alleges a “breach of contract” and
requests to “revive” the case of Indiana
Protection and Advocacy Services Comm'n et al. v.
Commissioner, Indiana Dep't of Correction, No.
1:08-cv-1317-TWP-MJD (“IPAS”). He also seeks
monetary relief and alleges generally that his mental health
needs are not being met. The IPAS case was a class action
involving mental health care for prisoners, but that case
concluded through a private settlement agreement involving
injunctive relief. Moreover, any complaints regarding the
enforcement of relief obtained in that case should be
directed to counsel for the class, the ACLU of Indiana, 1031
E. Washington St., Indianapolis, IN 46202. No relief in the
IPAS case can be granted in this separate lawsuit. If the
plaintiff seeks relief or raises complaints based on the IPAS
case, he shall have through November 7,
2016, in which to notify the Court and seek
dismissal of this case.
plaintiff wishes to pursue individual relief in this case, he
will have through November 7, 2016, to file
an Amended Complaint. This is because the Motion of 1983
Prisoner Complaint to Show Cause, if considered to be a
complaint, fails to state a claim upon which relief can be
to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b), the Court must dismiss a
complaint brought by a prisoner or any claim within a
complaint which “(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. To satisfy the
notice-pleading standard of Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure, a complaint must provide a “short and
plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is
entitled to relief, ” which is sufficient to provide
the defendant with “fair notice” of the claim and
its basis. Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 93
(2007) (per curiam) (citing Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) and quoting
Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2)). The purpose of this requirement is
“to give the defendant fair notice of what the claim is
and the grounds upon which it rests.” Bell Atlantic
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007)(citing
Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 47 (1957)); see
also Wade v. Hopper, 993 F.2d 1246, 1249 (7th Cir.
1993)(noting that the main purpose of Rule 8 is rooted in
fair notice: a complaint “must be presented with
intelligibility sufficient for a court or opposing party to
understand whether a valid claim is alleged and if so what it
is.”) (quotation omitted)). The complaint “must
actually suggest that the plaintiff has a right to relief, by
providing allegations that raise a right to relief above the
speculative level.” Windy City Metal Fabricators
& Supply, Inc. v. CIT Tech. Fin. Servs., 536 F.3d
663, 668 (7th Cir. 2008) (quoting Tamayo v.
Blagojevich, 526 F.3d 1074, 1084 (7th Cir. 2008)).
the complaint must be dismissed. First, the sole defendant is
the Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Correction, but
liability under § 1983 requires that a defendant be
personally responsible for the alleged violation. Burks
v. Raemisch, 555 F.3d 592, 593-94 (7th Cir.
2009)(“Section 1983 does not establish a system of
vicarious responsibility. Liability depends on each
defendant's knowledge and actions, not on the knowledge
or actions of persons they supervise. . . .
Monell's rule [is that] that public employees
are responsible for their own misdeeds but not for anyone
else's.”)(citing Monell v. New York City
Dep't of Social Services, 436 U.S. 658 (1978)).
“Because vicarious liability is inapplicable to . . .
§ 1983 suits, a plaintiff must plead that each
Government-official defendant, through the official's own
individual actions, has violated the Constitution.”
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1948 (2009). The
plaintiff makes no allegations sufficient to hold the
Commissioner personally liable. In addition, the
plaintiff's generalized complaints of mistreatment are
not sufficient to state a claim that his Eighth Amendment
rights have been violated. In order for an inmate to state a
claim under § 1983 for medical mistreatment or the
denial of medical care, the prisoner must allege “acts
or omissions sufficiently harmful to evidence deliberate
indifference to serious medical needs.” Estelle v.
Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976). Deliberate indifference
exists only when an official “knows of and disregards
an excessive risk to an inmate's health; the official
must both be aware of facts from which the inference could be
drawn that a substantial risk of serious harm exists, and he
must also draw the inference.” Farmer v.
Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 837 (1994)(construing
Estelle). Combs has not sufficiently alleged that
any individual has been deliberately indifferent to his
serious medical needs.
plaintiff shall have through November 7,
2016, in which to file an amended complaint
if he wishes to pursue his claims in this case.
files an amended complaint, the plaintiff shall conform to
the following guidelines: (a) the amended complaint shall
comply with the requirement of Rule 8(a)(2) of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure that pleadings contain
“a short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief. . . ., ” which is
sufficient to provide the defendant with “fair
notice” of the claim and its basis. Erickson v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 93 (2007) (per curiam) (citing
Bell Atl Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) and
quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2)); (b) the amended complaint must
include a demand for the relief sought; (c) the amended
complaint must identify what legal injury they claim to have
suffered and what persons are responsible for each such legal
injury; and (d) the amended complaint must include the case
number referenced in the caption of this Entry. The plaintiff
is further notified that “[unrelated claims against
different defendants belong in different suits.”
George v. Smith, 507 F.3d 605, 607 (7th Cir. 2007).
organizing his complaint, the plaintiff may benefit from
utilizing the Court's complaint form. The clerk
is directed to include a copy of the prisoner civil
rights complaint form along with the plaintiffs copy of this
amended complaint is filed as directed above, it will be
screened. If no amended complaint is filed, this action will