United States District Court, D. Hawaii
ORDER DISMISSING AMENDED COMPLAINT PURSUANT TO 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915(E) & 1915A(A)
E. KOBAYASHI UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Brian Aquino is incarcerated at the Halawa Correctional
Facility (“HCF”), and brings this action pursuant
to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Am. Compl., ECF. No. 10. Aquino
alleges Defendants the Hawaii Department of Public Safety
(“DPS”), HCF, and HCF Warden Scott Harrington
denied him safe housing and interfered with his mail. Aquino
names all Defendants in their individual and official
capacities and seeks damages and a transfer from HCF.
following reasons, Aquino's Complaint is DISMISSED
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2) &
1915A(a-b) for his failure to state a plausible claim for
relief, with leave granted to amend as limited below.
Aquino is a prisoner and is proceeding in forma pauperis, the
court is required to screen his Complaint pursuant to 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2) and 1915A(a). The court must
dismiss a complaint or claim that is frivolous, malicious,
fails to state a claim for relief, or seeks damages from
defendants who are immune from suit. See Lopez v.
Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1126-27 (9th Cir. 2000) (en banc)
(discussing 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)); Rhodes v.
Robinson, 621 F.3d 1002, 1004 (9th Cir. 2010)
(discussing 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)).
under §§ 1915(e)(2) and 1915A(b) involves the same
standard of review as that used under Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 12(b)(6). Watison v. Carter, 668 F.3d
1108, 1112 (9th Cir. 2012); see also Wilhelm v.
Rotman, 680 F.3d 1113, 1121 (9th Cir. 2012) (discussing
screening pursuant to § 1915A). Under Rule 12(b)(6), a
complaint must “contain sufficient factual matter,
accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556
U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (internal quotation marks omitted);
Wilhelm, 680 F.3d at 1121. “Determining
whether a complaint states a plausible claim for relief [is]
. . . a context-specific task that requires the reviewing
court to draw on its judicial experience and common
sense.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678.
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure requires only
“a short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief.” Detailed factual
allegations are not required, but “[t]hreadbare
recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by
mere conclusory statements, do not suffice.”
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. The “mere possibility
of misconduct” or an “unadorned, the
defendant-unlawfully-harmed me accusation” falls short
of meeting this plausibility standard. Id.; see
also Moss v. U.S. Secret Serv., 572 F.3d 962, 969 (9th
litigants' pleadings must be liberally construed and all
doubts should be resolved in their favor. Hebbe v.
Pliler, 627 F.3d 338, 342 (9th Cir. 2010) (citations
omitted). Leave to amend must be granted if it appears the
plaintiff can correct the defects in the complaint. Lopez
v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1130 (9th Cir. 2000) (en banc).
If the complaint cannot be saved by amendment, dismissal
without leave to amend is appropriate. Sylvia Landfield
Trust v. City of L.A., 729 F.3d 1189, 1196 (9th Cir.
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must
allege two essential elements: (1) that a right secured by
the Constitution or laws of the United States was violated,
and (2) that the alleged violation was committed by a person
acting under the color of state law. See West v.
Atkins, 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988).
a plaintiff must allege that he suffered a specific injury as
a result of a particular defendant's conduct and an
affirmative link between the injury and the violation of his
rights. See Monell v. Dep't of Social Servs.,
436 U.S. 658 (1978); Rizzo v. Goode, 423 U.S. 362,
371-72, 377 (1976). “A person ‘subjects'
another to the deprivation of a constitutional right, within
the meaning of § 1983, if he does an affirmative act,
participates in another's affirmative acts or omits to
perform an act which he is legally required to do that causes
the deprivation of which complaint is made.”
Johnson v. Duffy, 588 F.2d 740, 743 (9th Cir. 1978).
HCF, DPS, and Claims Against Warden Harrington in His
Official Capacity Are Dismissed
Eleventh Amendment bars suits for money damages in federal
court against a state, its agencies, and state officials
acting in their official capacities.” Aholelei v.
Dep't of Pub. Safety, 488 F.3d 1144, 1147 (9th Cir.
2007). Defendants named in their official capacities are
subject to suit under § 1983 only “for prospective
declaratory and injunctive relief . . . to enjoin an alleged
ongoing violation of federal law.” Oyama v. Univ.
of Haw., 2013 WL 1767710, at *7 (D. Haw. Apr. 23, 2013)
(quoting Wilbur v. Locke, 423 F.3d 1101, 1111 (9th
Cir. 2005), abrogated on other grounds by Levin v.
Commerce Energy Inc., 560 U.S. 413 (2010)); see also
Will v. Mich. Dep't of State Police, 491 U.S. 58,
seeks damages, and his claims for prospective injunctive
relief (a transfer to another facility) will not enjoin an
alleged ongoing violation of federal law. Official capacity