United States District Court, D. South Carolina
Johnny S. Valentine, II, #339124, Plaintiff,
Cpt. Marvin Nix; Lt. Kristy Leopard; Nurse Dolly Carver; and Rick Clarck, Defendants.
ORDER AND NOTICE
V. Hodges United States Magistrate Judge
S. Valentine, II (“Plaintiff”), proceeding pro se
and in forma pauperis, filed this complaint against Captain
Marvin Nix, Lieutenant Kristy Leopard, Nurse Dolly Carver,
and Rick Clarck (collectively “Defendants”),
alleging a violation of constitutional rights. 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.
Factual and Procedural Background
filed this complaint concerning the conditions of his
confinement at the Pickens County Detention Center from June
to September 2018. [ECF No. 1 at 5]. Plaintiff claims: (a) he
was held in substandard living conditions, (b) the building
was in disrepair, (c) the facility lacked cleanliness, clean
uniforms and linens, pest control, proper medical care and
proper medical housing, (d) he suffered untreated medical
conditions, (e) the facility maintained unsafe and unsanitary
food practices, (f) improperly staffed areas led to unsafe
environments, (g) a denial of due process, and (h) improper
new arrival processing. Id. at 6. Plaintiff alleges
he was forced to sleep on a dirty floor due to an
insufficient number of beds, and he claims the food was often
raw, undercooked, sour, and not edible. Id.
Plaintiff also alleges daily brutal and severe beatings by
other inmates, sick call requests that were rarely answered,
and a lack of dental care. Id. Plaintiff also claims
inmates were forced to stand in the sun for several hours.
Id. Plaintiff requests monetary damages.
Standard of Review
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).
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.
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.
complaint does not contain any factual allegations of
constitutional wrongdoing or discriminatory actions
attributable to Defendants. Accordingly, Plaintiff's
civil rights claim should be summarily dismissed. See
Leer v. Murphy, 844 F.2d 628 (9th Cir. 1988) (noting
“[s]weeping conclusory allegations against a prison
official will not suffice”; an inmate must set forth
specific facts as to each individual defendant's
may attempt to correct the defects in his complaint by filing
an amended complaint by November 15, 2018, along with any
appropriate service documents. Plaintiff is reminded that an
amended complaint replaces the original complaint and should
be complete in itself. See Young v. City of Mount
Ranier, 238 F.3d 567, 572 (4th Cir. 2001) (“As a
general rule, an amended pleading ordinarily supersedes the
original and renders it of no legal effect.”) (citation
and internal quotation marks omitted). If Plaintiff files an
amended complaint, the undersigned will conduct screening of
the amended complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. If
Plaintiff fails to file an ...