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Johnson v. Claud

United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Paducah Division

February 13, 2018

JOSHUA BRYAN JOHNSON PLAINTIFF
v.
JAILER KEN CLAUD et al. DEFENDANTS

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          Thomas B. Russell, Senior Judge United States District Court

         Plaintiff, Joshua Bryan Johnson, filed a pro se, in forma pauperis 42 U.S.C. § 1983 complaint. On screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A and McGore v. Wrigglesworth, 114 F.3d 601 (6th Cir. 1997), overruled on other grounds by Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S. 199 (2007), the complaint was dismissed in part and allowed to continue in part, and Plaintiff was afforded an opportunity to amend. Plaintiff has filed his amended complaint (DN 10), which the Court will now screen under § 1915A.

         I. SUMMARY OF CLAIMS

         In his original complaint, Plaintiff, a convicted inmate then housed at the Calloway County Jail (CCJ), sued Jailer Ken Claud in his official capacity. He alleged that during his nearly sixteen-month stay in CCJ he had not been given medicine for his severe migraine headaches. He stated that he cannot afford to purchase over-the-counter medicine from the canteen and that he had filled out “several med-call forms to try to get Tylenol or aspirin put on med care only to be treated like my health means nothing to the jail.”

         Plaintiff also alleged that Dr. Paulis, who was not named as a Defendant, had only seen him one time and that “the only thing he did was take blood pressure.”

         The original complaint also made claims about the jail's mail procedures, which have been allowed to go forward.

         As relief, Plaintiff asked for monetary damages and “to fix the mailing procedures.”

         Because Plaintiff had alleged constitutional violations due to a custom or policy of CCJ regarding his inability to obtain medication and regarding the postal restrictions, the Court allowed those claims to continue against Defendant Claud in his official capacity. The Court found that Plaintiff did not allege a policy or custom regarding his claim that he did not receive adequate medical attention from Dr. Paulis or others and dismissed that claim against Defendant Claud in his official capacity. Plaintiff was given an opportunity to amend his complaint to name in their individual capacities the Defendant(s) responsible for the alleged denial of medical treatment.

         Plaintiff's amended complaint names as Defendants CCJ Jailer Ken Claud in his individual capacity; the CCJ; and CCJ Dr. Charles Paulis in his individual capacity. Plaintiff reiterates his Eighth Amendment claims related to not receiving treatment for his migraine headaches. The amended complaint adds:

I have filled out the proper grievance paper that has been answered by the Jailer Ken Claud who has told me to purchase them of[f] canteen also. The [CCJ] who house state inmates is not supposed to deny an inmate any proper medical care due to lack of money. I am being discriminated against by the doctor, Jailer and [CCJ.]

         The amended complaint asks for monetary damages and “to fix medical procedures in CCJ.”

         II. ANALYSIS

         When a prisoner initiates a civil action seeking redress from a governmental entity, officer, or employee, the trial court must review the complaint and dismiss the action, if the Court determines that it is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1) and (2). A claim is legally frivolous when it lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact. Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). The Court may, therefore, dismiss a claim as frivolous where it is based on an indisputably meritless legal theory or where the factual contentions are clearly baseless. Id. at 327. When determining whether a plaintiff has stated a claim upon which relief can be granted, the Court must construe the complaint in a light most favorable to Plaintiff and accept all of the factual allegations as true. Prater v. City of Burnside, Ky., 289 F.3d 417, 424 (6th Cir. 2002). While a reviewing court must liberally construe pro se pleadings, Boag v. MacDougall, 454 U.S. 364, 365 (1982) (per curiam), to avoid dismissal, a complaint must include “enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007).

         Injunctive ...


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