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Sands v. Delaware Department of Correction

Superior Court of Delaware

August 2, 2017

CHRISTOPHER BRIAN SANDS, Plaintiff,
v.
DELAWARE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTION, Defendant.

          Submitted: July 18, 2017

         On Defendant's Motion to Dismiss GRANTED

         On Plaintiffs Motion for Appointment of Counsel DENIED

          ORDER

          Honorable Mary M. Johnston judge.

         On July 31, 2014, Plaintiff filed a civil complaint against Defendant. The allegations in the 2014 complaint stemmed from an incident that allegedly occurred in June 2012.

         By Order dated February 10, 2017, this Court dismissed the 2014 complaint. The Court found that following repeated extensions to permit Plaintiff to serve defendant with process, Defendant was never served as required by Superior Court Civil Rule 4(j). Pursuant to Rule 41(b), the Court granted Defendant's motion to dismiss for failure to prosecute.[1]

         Plaintiff filed this action on May 11, 2017. The 2017 complaint relates to the same incident that allegedly occurred in June 2012. The 2014 and 2017 complaints are substantially identical. Plaintiff claims damages on the basis of simple negligence and "deliberate indifference."

         Motion to Dismiss

         Defendant has filed a Motion to Dismiss. The Court finds that the Motion to Dismiss must be granted for the following reasons.

         (1) Plaintiffs negligence claim is barred by the two-year statute of limitations.[2] Viewed in the light most favorable to Plaintiff, the events occurred in June 2012. Therefore, the previous action, filed on July 31, 2014, also was barred by the statute of limitations.

         (2)Plaintiffs negligence claim against the Delaware Department of Correction is barred by the Delaware State Tort Claims Act.[3]

         (3) If Plaintiff s "deliberate indifference" claim is interpreted to be a civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983, such claims also are barred by a two-year statute of limitations.[4]

         Motion for ...


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