United States District Court, D. South Carolina
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
J. GOSSETT, Magistrate Judge.
plaintiff, Andre Youngblood, a self-represented federal
detainee during the time period relevant to the Complaint,
filed this action against the defendants pursuant to 42
U.S.C. Â§ 1983. This matter is before the court pursuant to 28
U.S.C. Â§ 636(b) and Local Civil Rule 73.02(B)(2) (D.S.C.) for
a Report and Recommendation on the defendants' motion to
dismiss. (ECF No. 26.) Pursuant to Roseboro v.
Garrison, 528 F.2d 309 (4th Cir. 1975), the court
advised Youngblood of the summary judgment and dismissal
procedures and the possible consequences if he failed to
respond adequately to the defendants' motion. (ECF No.
30.) Youngblood did not file any responsive memorandum
addressing the defendants' motion. Having reviewed the
parties' submissions and the applicable law, the court
finds that the defendants' motion should be granted.
filed this action several months after being transferred from
the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, New York to
the local detention center in Charleston, South Carolina.
Youngblood alleges that he was supposed to have wrist
surgery, but that his surgery did not take place until two
months after his arrival at the Charleston County Detention
Center. He alleges that the defendants' diagnoses were
responsible for the two-month delay, that they did not
provide him with pain management, and that they denied him
the opportunity to see an outside neuromuscular physician.
(See generally Compl., ECF No. 1.)
Motion to Dismiss Standard
motion to dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
12(b)(6) examines the legal sufficiency of the facts alleged
on the face of the plaintiff's complaint. Edwards v.
City of Goldsboro, 178 F.3d 231, 243 (4th Cir. 1999). To
survive a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, "[f]actual allegations
must be enough to raise a right to relief above the
speculative level." Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly,
550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). The "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) (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570). A claim is facially
plausible when the factual content allows the court to
reasonably infer that the defendant is liable for the
misconduct alleged. Id . When considering a motion
to dismiss, the court must accept as true all of the factual
allegations contained in the complaint. Erickson v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007).
court observes that it is required to liberally construe
pro se complaints. Id . Such pro
se complaints are held to a less stringent standard than
those drafted by attorneys, id.; Gordon v. Leeke,
574 F.2d 1147, 1151 (4th Cir. 1978), and a federal district
court is charged with liberally construing a complaint filed
by a pro se litigant to allow the development of a
potentially meritorious case. Hughes v. Rowe, 449
U.S. 5, 9 (1980); Cruz v. Beto, 405 U.S. 319 (1972).
When a federal court is evaluating a pro se
complaint, the plaintiff's factual allegations are
assumed to be true. Erickson, 551 U.S. at 93 (citing
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-56 (2007)). 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; however, a district court may not rewrite a
complaint to include claims that were never presented,
Barnett v. Hargett, 174 F.3d 1128 (10th Cir. 1999),
construct the plaintiff's legal arguments for him,
Small v. Endicott, 998 F.2d 411 (7th Cir. 1993), or
"conjure up questions never squarely presented" to
the court, Beaudett v. City of Hampton, 775 F.2d
1274, 1278 (4th Cir. 1985).
defendants argue that Youngblood's Complaint should be
dismissed because his factual allegations do not meet the
standard needed to plausibly allege the defendants were
deliberately indifferent to his medical needs in violation of
42 U.S.C. Â§ 1983. (Defs.' Mot. to Dismiss, ECF No.
26.) Specifically, the defendants point out that Youngblood
acknowledges in his Complaint that he received medical
treatment; however, the defendants argue, Youngblood's
allegations "speak only to discretionary medical
decisions made by medical professionals that are contrary to
[Youngblood's] desires." (Defs.' Mem. Supp. Mot.
to Dismiss, ECF No. 26-1 at 6.) As the defendants point out,
Youngblood's factual allegations at best constitute a
disagreement between him and his healthcare providers over
the type, amount, and scope of his treatment, and an
inmate's difference of opinion over his medical treatment
fails to rise to the level of a constitutional violation.
(Id.) The defendants further argue that any alleged two-month
delay in Youngblood's wrist surgery does not satisfy the
deliberate indifference standard because Youngblood has not
alleged any facts demonstrating unlawful intent on the part
of either defendant. (Id. at 7-8.) The defendants further
correctly argue that, with regard to Youngblood's
allegation that the defendants failed to allow him to see a
neuromuscular physician, an inmate does not have a
constitutional right to be treated by the doctor of his
choice. (Id. at 8-9.)
did not provide any response in opposition to the
defendants' well-supported arguments. The only
correspondence from Youngblood received by the court
subsequent to the date of the defendants' motion was a
letter containing a list of motions Youngblood wished to
file. (ECF No. 39.) However, Youngblood provided no details
of the specific relief sought or the grounds supporting the
motions. Notably, the list of motions did not include a
motion to amend the Complaint. The letter is not responsive
to the defendants' motion, which the court, upon review,
concludes is well grounded under the law.
for the foregoing reasons, the court recommends that the
defendants' motion be granted and this case be ...