United States District Court, D. South Carolina
Don S. Maness, III, #370865, and Russell C. Geissler, #349604, Plaintiffs,
Mr. Williams, Warden, McCormick C.I.; Mr. Roberts, Assoc. Warden, M.C.I.; Mr. Wolff, Maintenance, M.C.I.; and Ms. Moss, Kitchen Supervisor, M.C.I., Defendants.
V. Hodges United States Magistrate Judge.
complaint is filed by two inmates incarcerated in McCormick
Correctional Institution in the South Carolina Department of
Corrections. Plaintiffs filed this complaint seeking to
litigate civil rights claims. [ECF No. 1]. Under Local Civ.
Rule 73.02(B)(2)(d) (D.S.C.), pretrial proceedings in this
action have been referred to the assigned United States
plaintiffs may not proceed in a single case under the Prison
Litigation Reform Act (“PLRA”). The Fourth
Circuit has held that “it is plain error to permit [an]
imprisoned litigant who is unassisted by counsel to represent
his fellow inmates in a class action, ” as “the
competence of a layman representing himself” is
“clearly too limited to allow him to risk the rights of
others.” See Oxendine v. Williams, 509 F.2d
1405, 1407 (4th Cir. 1975); see also Hubbard v.
Haley, 262 F.3d 1194 (11th Cir. 2001) (holding that,
under the PLRA, each prisoner must bring a separate suit in
order to satisfy the Act's requirement that each prisoner
pay the full filing fee). In a lawsuit, each plaintiff's
claims are unique to that particular plaintiff, and any
damages awarded would need to be determined individually.
Further, the court may be presented with a situation where
some plaintiffs have complied with the exhaustion requirement
of the PLRA and others have not. See 42 U.S.C.
§ 1997e(a). Finally, each plaintiff must be notified
separately of court documents, orders, and deadlines. See
Roseboro v. Garrison, 528 F.2d 309, 310 (4th Cir. 1975).
plaintiffs wish to proceed with this case, they must comply
with the instructions below. If plaintiffs do not comply with
the instructions within the time permitted by this order,
this case may be dismissed for failure to prosecute and
failure to comply with an order of this court under Rule 41
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
Within 21 days from the date this order, Plaintiffs are
1) Complete, sign, and return the enclosed standard complaint
form. Briefly state the facts of your claim against the party
or parties you intend to name as defendants in the
“statement of claims” section, and what relief
2) Fully complete one summons form which lists every
defendant named in this matter. In the space following
“TO: (Defendant's name and address), ”
Plaintiff is required to provide a complete name and a full
address where each defendant can be served pursuant to
Fed.R.Civ.P. 4. Plaintiff's complete name and full
address must be provided in the blank section following
“plaintiff or plaintiff's attorney, whose name and
address are.” Handwritten information must be printed
and legible. Nothing else should be written by Plaintiff on
either the front or back of the summons or in the margins. If
it is necessary to list additional defendants whose names and
street addresses do not fit in the space on the summons form
preceded by “TO: (Name and address of Defendant),
” Plaintiff must attach an additional page of
letter-sized (eight and one-half inches by eleven inches)
paper listing additional defendants and service addresses.
Blank forms are attached for Plaintiffs use.
3) Fully complete, sign, and return a Form USM-285 for
defendants named in this case. Only one defendant's name
and street address should appear on each form.
Defendant's name and street address should be placed in
the spaces preceded by the words, “SERVE AT.”
Plaintiff's name and address should be placed in the
space designated, “SEND NOTICE OF SERVICE COPY TO . .
., ” and Plaintiff should sign where the form requests,
“Signature of Attorney or other Originator . . .
.” Plaintiff must provide defendant's complete
street address on the form (not a post office box address).
Plaintiff must provide, and is responsible for, information
sufficient to identify defendants on the Forms USM-285. The
United States Marshal cannot serve an inadequately-identified
defendant, and unserved defendants may be dismissed as
parties to this case. Blank forms are attached for Plaintiffs
plaintiff is a pro se litigant. Plaintiffs' attention is
directed to the following important notice:
You are ordered to always keep the Clerk of Court advised in
writing (United States District Court, 901 Richland Street,
Columbia, South Carolina 29201) if your address changes for
any reason, so as to assure that orders or other matters that
specify deadlines for you to meet will be received by you. If
as a result of your failure to comply with this order, you
fail to meet a deadline set by this court, your case may be
dismissed for violating this order. Therefore, if you have a
change of address before this case is ended, you must comply
with this order by immediately advising the Clerk of Court in
writing of such change of address and providing the court
with the docket number of all pending cases you have filed
with this court. Your failure to do so will not be excused by
THE CLERK OF COURT:
Clerk of Court is instructed that this case shall be
associated only with the first-named Plaintiff, Don S.
Maness, III. Therefore, the Clerk of Court is directed to
remove Russell C. Geissler as Plaintiff in this case. The
Clerk is further directed to assign a separate civil action
number to Plaintiff Russell C. Geissler. The Clerk shall file
this Order as the initial docket entry in the newly created
case and shall re-file the instant Complaint and Plaintiff
Russell C. Geissler's Motion for Leave to Proceed in
forma pauperis as subsequent docket entries in the newly
created action. The Defendants in the newly created case will
be the same Defendants listed in this case. The Clerk is
authorized to determine the most efficient way and time for
assigning and entering the new case numbers, party
information, and pleading information on the court's
electronic case management system.
Clerk shall mail a copy of this order, 42 U.S.C. § 1983
complaint packets, summons (Form AO 440), and Forms USM-285
to each Plaintiff. The Clerk of Court shall not enter any
change of address submitted by Plaintiffs which directs that
mail be sent to a person other than Plaintiffs unless that