United States District Court, D. Hawaii
ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT IN PART WITH LEAVE GRANTED
DERRICK K. WATSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Plaintiff Vernard Anderson is incarcerated at the Oahu
Community Correctional Center (“OCCC”). Anderson
asserts that Defendants OCCC, its “Warden-Chief of
Security, ” and Adult Corrections Officer
(“ACO”) D. Pili violated his rights under the
Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments when ACO Pili allegedly
assaulted him and the Warden-Chief of Security found
Anderson, rather than Pili, guilty of assault and failed to
respond to his grievance appeal.
Complaint is DISMISSED IN PART pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§§ 1915(e)(2) & 1915A(a-b). Specifically,
Anderson's claims as alleged against OCCC and Defendants
named in their official capacities for damages are dismissed
with prejudice. Anderson's due process claims as alleged
against Warden-Chief of Security fail to state a claim and
are dismissed without prejudice.
claim for excessive force as alleged against Defendant D.
Pili in his individual capacity states a claim and may be
served. Defendant Pili is required to file a response after
service is perfected.
court is required to conduct a pre-Answer screening of
Anderson's pleadings pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§
1915(e)(2) and 1915A(a). The court must dismiss a claim or
complaint 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); Rhodes v.
Robinson, 621 F.3d 1002, 1004 (9th Cir. 2010).
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) (screening under §
1915(e)(2)); see also Wilhelm v. Rotman, 680 F.3d
1113, 1121 (9th Cir. 2012) (screening under § 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.
“Threadbare 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 Cir. 2009).
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, 203 F.3d at 1130. 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. 2013).
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).
Eleventh Amendment Immunity
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,
jails, prison facilities, and state agencies are not
“persons” amenable to suit under § 1983.
See Allison v. California Adult Auth., 419 F.2d 822,
823 (9th Cir. 1969); Maldonado v. Harris, 370 F.3d
945, 951 ...