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Reyes v. Bolles

United States District Court, D. Oregon

January 8, 2020

JUAN MANUEL REYES, Plaintiff,
v.
C. BOLLES, Law Library Coordinator; Y. RANGEL, Law Library Coordinator; MR. LEGORE, Supervisor; SUSAN WASHBURN, Superintendent of EOCI; ANDREA NEISTADT, Assistant Superintendent of EOCI; COLETTE S. PETERS, Director of DOC; HEATHER D. NEVIL, Hearings Officer; CRYSTAL L. CORTAZOR, Hearings Officer; and M. SWEET, Correctional Officer, Defendants.

          ORDER TO DISMISS

          Marco A. Hernandez Chief United States District Judge

         Plaintiff, an inmate at the Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution ("EOCI"), brings this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Pursuant to an Order entered this date, the Court granted plaintiff s Application to Proceed In Forma Pauperis. However, for the reasons set forth below, the Court dismisses plaintiffs Complaint.

         BACKGROUND

         Plaintiffs Complaint alleges three claims for relief. In his first claim, plaintiff alleges his rights were violated in connection with a disciplinary proceeding. Plaintiff does not identify the factual basis underlying the disciplinary proceeding, nor does he identify the sanction received. Plaintiff alleges he was not given fair notice of what conduct was prohibited and that EOCI officials failed to comply with Department of Corrections procedures. Plaintiffs second claim alleges law library coordinators, supervisors, and executives conspired to deprive plaintiff of his rights in order to reduce or stop the filing of cases with the courts on behalf of inmates who lacked the necessary means, understanding, education, and language skills. Plaintiffs third claim alleges that disciplinary hearings officers "fully support 100% the reports with already made decisions on the violations alleged without any proof or evidence of any wrong doing," and that hearings officers "have many times vouched for the law library coordinators since they are friends for many years and their supervisors sign off on their reports for disciplinary sanctions."

         In attachments to his Complaint, plaintiff includes a narrative statement and other documents which appear to indicate that the claims in the current Complaint arise from the same facts which underlie claims alleged by plaintiff in Reyes v. Washburn, No. 2:19-cv-01562-AC. By way of remedy here, plaintiff seeks to have all disciplinary findings expunged from his personal record and reinstatement of his prior custody status, as well as money damages. Plaintiff also seeks an investigation of disciplinary actions by the law library coordinators and their supervisors against other inmates and imposition of a requirement that a Spanish-speaking and trained legal assistant be provided to other inmates.

         STANDARDS

         A district court must dismiss an action initiated by a prisoner seeking redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee, if the Court determines that the action (i) is frivolous or malicious; (ii) fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted; or (iii) seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief. See 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2) & l9l5A(b). When a plaintiff is proceeding pro se, the court must construe the pleadings liberally and afford the plaintiff the benefit of any doubt. Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007). Moreover, before dismissing a, pro se civil rights complaint for failure to state a claim, the court supplies the plaintiff with a statement of the complaint's deficiencies. Karim-Panahi v. Los Angeles Police Dept, 839 F.2d 621, 623-24 (9th Cir. 1988); Eldridge v. Block, 832 F.2d 1132, 1136 (9th Cir. 1987). Apro se litigant will be given leave to amend his or her complaint unless it is clear that the deficiencies of the complaint cannot be cured by amendment. Karim-Panahi, 839 F.2d at 623; Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1130-31 (9th Cir. 2000).

         DISCUSSION

         To 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. West v. Atkins, 487 U.S. 42, 48 (1988); Naffe v. Frye, 789 F.3d 1030, 1035-36 (9th Cir. 2015). In order to state a § 1983 claim, a plaintiff must allege facts giving rise to a reasonable inference that the named defendants were personally involved in the alleged constitutional violation. Taylor v. List, 880 F.2d 1040, 1045 (9th Cir. 1989). Here, none of plaintiff s claims for relief allege facts giving rise to a reasonable inference that any of the named defendants were personally involved in the alleged violation of his rights; plaintiff does not allege which defendant was personally involved in any of the actions complained of.

         To the extent plaintiffs first claim alleges his rights were violated in connection with the disciplinary proceeding, plaintiff does not allege facts establishing a violation of his due process rights. See Serrano v. Francis, 345 F.3d 1071, 1077 (9th Cir. 2003) (procedural protections afforded aprisoner in prison disciplinary proceedings under Wolff v. McDonnell, 418 U.S. 539, 564-71 (1974) "adhere only when the disciplinary action implicates a protected liberty interest in some 'unexpected matter' or imposes an 'atypical and significant hardship on the inmate in relation to the ordinary incidents of prison life'") (quoting Sandin v. Conner, 515 U.S. 472, 484 (1995)). Plaintiff does not allege any facts supporting a claim that the result of the disciplinary proceeding imposed an atypical and significant hardship such that his due process rights were implicated.

         Plaintiffs second and third claims do not allege he suffered any injury. To the extent plaintiff claims prison officials conspired to prevent other inmates from filing lawsuits and to improperly discipline other inmates, plaintiff appears to lack standing to pursue such claims. See, e.g., Lewis v. Casey, 518 U.S. 343, 349 (1996) (doctrine of standing requires that claimant have suffered or will imminently suffer actual harm); Caswell v. Calderon, 363 F.3d 832, 836 (9th Cir. 2004) (case-or-controversy requirement means that plaintiff must have an actual or threatened injury traceable to the defendant and likely to be redressed by a favorable judicial decision).

         Finally, to the extent plaintiffs claims in this action arise out of the same nucleus of facts underlying the claims alleged in Reyes v. Washburn, No. 2:19-cv-01562-AC, plaintiff has no right to have two cases pending based on the identical facts. See Tripati v. First Nat 7 Bank & Trust, 821 F.2d 1368, 1370 (9th Cir. 1987) (dismissing as frivolous claim arising out of the same series of events and alleging the same facts as another pending action); see also Boag v. McDougall, 454 U.S. 364, 365 n.l (1982) (§ 1915(d) gives district court broad discretion to take judicial notice of previously filed civil rights actions); Hernandez v. Denton, 861 F.2d 1421, 1425 (9th Cir. 1988), rev'd on other grounds, 112 S.Ct. 369 (1992) (in forma pauperis plaintiff has no right to bring repetitive or duplicative claims).

         CONCLUSION

         Based on the foregoing, the Court DISMISSES Plaintiffs Complaint. Plaintiff may file an Amended Complaint, curing the deficiencies noted above, within 30 days of the date of this order. Plaintiff is advised that failure to file an Amended ...


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