United States District Court, D. South Carolina
April 15, 2015
Leo McClam, Plaintiff,
Ms. E. Jefferson, CNA; Ms. B. Washington, CNA; Mr. N.F.N. Livingston, Officer; Ms. N.F.N. Mae; Ms. P. Francis, Nurse; Dr. N.F.N. Cross, Doctor; Judy Dupree, Social Worker; Ms. Jessica N.L.N., Social Worker; Mr. N.F.N. Foster, Captain; Ms. N.F.N. Hampton, Officer; Dr. Jose Chavez, Doctor; Kia Wilson, Horry County Attorney; Ms. N.F.N. Gigger, CNA; Ms. Dishia Dave, Social Worker; Dr. N.F.N. McDonald, Doctor; Ms. Jamesha N.L.N., Social Worker; Ms. Carla N.L.N, Kitchen Worker; Mr. Ray Washington, Kitchen Worker; Sgt. N.F.N. Anderson, Captain; Dr. Peggy Wadman, Doctor; and Kenny Boone, Sheriff, all defendants sued in their own personal and individual capacities, Defendants.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
SHIVA V. HODGES, Magistrate Judge.
Leo McClam ("Plaintiff"), proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis, filed this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging a violation of his constitutional rights. Plaintiff sues CNA E. Jefferson, CNA B. Washington, Officer Livingston, Ms. Mae, Nurse P. Francis, Dr. Cross, Social Worker Judy Dupree, Social Worker Jessica N.L.N., Captain Foster, Officer Hampton, Dr. Jose Chavez, Horry County Attorney Kia Wilson, CNA Gigger, Social Worker Dishia Dave, Dr. McDonald, Social Worker Jamesha N.L.N., Kitchen Worker Carla N.L.N, Kitchen Worker Ray Washington, Captain Anderson, Dr. Peggy Wadman, and Sheriff Kenny Boone ("Defendants"). Pursuant to the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and Local Civ. Rule 73.02(B)(2)(e) (D.S.C.), the undersigned is authorized to review such complaints for relief and submit findings and recommendations to the district judge. For the reasons that follow, the undersigned recommends that the district judge dismiss the complaint in this case without prejudice and without issuance and service of process.
I. Factual and Procedural Background
Plaintiff has previously filed three actions in this court alleging false detainment, false arrest, and forced administration of medication. McClam v. Livingston, C/A No. 3:15-362-TLW-SVH (" McClam I "); McClam v. Farier, C/A No. 1:15-1190-TLW (" McClam II "); and, McClam v. Martain, C/A No. 1:15-1276-TLW-SVH (" McClam III "). As in his previous cases, Plaintiff alleges that he was falsely arrested in Horry County on or about September 24, 2010, for failure to register as a sex offender, first offense. [ECF No. 1 at 3]. Plaintiff claims that six months later, Richland County charged him with failure to register, first offense and placed him in Mental Health. Id. Plaintiff argues that this is double jeopardy. Id. Plaintiff argues that one year later, Horry County charged him with failure to register as a sex offender, second offense. Id. Plaintiff claims that he served three years in the Horry County Detention Center, and then Richland County placed a mental health hold on him and placed him in mental health custody for failure to register as a sex offender. Id. Plaintiff argues that this is also double jeopardy. Id. Plaintiff alleges that he timely registered as a sex offender and reported his change of address. Id. at 3-4. Plaintiff claims that the treatment team placed him on monthly psychotropic medical injections and argues that it is against the law to forcibly medicate a person. Id. at 4.
Plaintiff claims that in 2006 he applied online to be the governmental president of Antarctica and he "was granted the job." Id. Plaintiff alleges that he immediately went on active duty for the Antarctica military and worked undercover to find the new holy grail. Id. Plaintiff states that when the United States found out, they incarcerated him for failure to register as a sex offender. Id. Plaintiff seeks declaratory and injunctive relief and monetary damages. Id. at 5.
A. Standard of Review
Plaintiff filed his complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915, which permits an indigent litigant to commence an action in federal court without prepaying the administrative costs of proceeding with the lawsuit. To protect against possible abuses of this privilege, the statute allows a district court to dismiss a case upon a finding that the action fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted or is frivolous or malicious. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(i), (ii). A finding of frivolity can be made where the complaint lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact. Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 31 (1992). A claim based on a meritless legal theory may be dismissed sua sponte under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B). See Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 327 (1989).
Pro se complaints are held to a less stringent standard than those drafted by attorneys. Gordon v. Leeke, 574 F.2d 1147, 1151 (4th Cir. 1978). A federal court is charged with liberally construing a complaint filed by a pro se litigant to allow the development of a potentially meritorious case. Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007). In evaluating a pro se complaint, the plaintiff's allegations are assumed to be true. Fine v. City of N.Y., 529 F.2d 70, 74 (2d Cir. 1975). The mandated liberal construction afforded to pro se pleadings means that if the court can reasonably read the pleadings to state a valid claim on which the plaintiff could prevail, it should do so. Nevertheless, the requirement of liberal construction does not mean that the court can ignore a clear failure in the pleading to allege facts that set forth a claim currently cognizable in a federal district court. Weller v. Dep't of Soc. Servs., 901 F.2d 387, 390-91 (4th Cir. 1990).
1. Insufficient Factual Allegations
A complaint must contain "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). Although the court must liberally construe a pro se complaint, the United States Supreme Court has made it clear that a plaintiff must do more than make conclusory statements to state a claim. See Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 677-78 (2009); Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). Rather, the complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state a claim that is plausible on its face, and the reviewing court need only accept as true the complaint's factual allegations, not its legal conclusions. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678-79. Plaintiff's complaint does not contain any factual allegations of specific wrongdoing attributable to any of the Defendants. Accordingly, this case is subject to summary dismissal.
Additionally, to the extent Plaintiff alleges a violation of the double jeopardy clause, his claim fails because involuntary civil commitment does not violate the double jeopardy clause. See In re Matthews, 550 S.E.2d 311, 316-17 (S.C. 2001) (holding South Carolina's Sexually Violent Predator Act, which provides the process for involuntary civil commitments of sexually violent predators, does not violate the Double Jeopardy Clause of the Constitution because it does not constitute punishment). Therefore, Plaintiff has not been punished in violation of the double jeopardy clause.
2. Duplicate Claim
Plaintiff's allegation that he is being forcibly medicated is being addressed by this court in his pending § 1983 action. See McClam I. Accordingly, the instant forcedmedication claim should be summarily dismissed in the interests of judicial economy and efficiency. See Aloe Creme Laboratories, Inc. v. Francine Co., 425 F.2d 1295, 1296 (5th Cir. 1970) ("The District Court clearly had the right to take notice of its own files and records and it had no duty to grind the same corn a second time.").
III. Conclusion and Recommendation
For the foregoing reasons, the undersigned recommends that the court dismiss this case without prejudice and without issuance and service of process.
IT IS SO RECOMMENDED.