United States District Court, D. Delaware
MANDEL D. WALKER, Plaintiff,
CONNECTIONS LLC, et al., Defendants.
D. Walker, James T. Vaughn Correctional Center, Smyrna,
Delaware. Pro Se Plaintiff.
CONNELLY, U.S. District Judge
Mandel D. Walker ("Plaintiff"), an inmate at the
James T. Vaughn Correctional Center ("VCC") in
Smyrna, Delaware, filed this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. (D.I. 2). Plaintiff appears pro
se and has paid the filing fee. The Court screens and
reviews the Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
injured himself on February 17, 2018, while playing
basketball at the Sussex Correctional Institution
("SCI") gym. (D.I. 2 at 10) Plaintiff has since
transferred to the VCC. Following the injury, Plaintiff
sought medical care from a variety of medical personnel.
(Id. at 10-12) Physical therapy began on May 16,
2108 and, on May 28, 2018, an ultrasound was performed after
Plaintiff had submitted a grievancecomplaining that he had yet
to receive the test.
30, 2018, Plaintiff was notified of the ultrasound results -
"the test result is not within normal limits."
(Id. at 12) Plaintiff was told he was scheduled to
see a physician, but nothing was done despite his repeated
sick call slips and filing of grievances. (Id.) On
July 12, 2018, provider Dr. Harris scheduled Plaintiff for an
MRI and an exam by an orthopedic surgeon. As of the date the
complaint was signed, August 20, 2018, Plaintiff had not been
called to sick call. (Id. at 12)
seeks compensatory and punitive damages as well as injunctive
federal court may properly dismiss an action sua
sponte under the screening provisions of 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A(b) if "the action is frivolous or
malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be
granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is
immune from such relief." Ball v. Famiglio, 726
F.3d 448, 452 (3d Cir. 2013). See 28 U.S.C. §
1915A (actions in which prisoner seeks redress from a
governmental defendant). The Court must accept all factual
allegations in a complaint as true and take them in the light
most favorable to a pro se plaintiff. Phillips
v. County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 229 (3d Cir.
2008); Erickson v, Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 93 (2007).
Because Plaintiff proceeds pro se, his pleading is
liberally construed and his complaint, "however
inartfully pleaded, must be held to less stringent standards
than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers." Erickson
v. Pardus, 551 U.S. at 94 (citations omitted).
action is frivolous if it "lacks an arguable basis
either in law or in fact." Neitzke v. Williams,
490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1),
a court may dismiss a complaint as frivolous if it is
"based on an indisputably meritless legal theory"
or a "clearly baseless" or "fantastic or
delusional" factual scenario. Neitzke, 490 U.S.
at 327-28; Wilson v. Rackmill, 878 F.2d 772, 774 (3d
legal standard for dismissing a complaint for failure to
state a claim pursuant to § 1915A(b)(1) is identical to
the legal standard used when ruling on Rule 12(b)(6) motions.
Tourscher v. McCullough, 184 F.3d 236, 240 (3d Cir.
1999). However, before dismissing a complaint or claims for
failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted
pursuant to the screening provisions of 28 U.S.C. §
1915A, the Court must grant Plaintiff leave to amend his
complaint unless amendment would be inequitable or futile.
See Grayson v. Mayview State Hosp., 293 F.3d 103,
114 (3d Cir. 2002).
well-pleaded complaint must contain more than mere labels and
conclusions. See Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662
(2009); Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544
(2007). A plaintiff must plead facts sufficient to show that
a claim has substantive plausibility. See Johnson v. City
of Shelby, __ U.S. __, 135 S.Ct. 346, 347 (2014). A
complaint may not dismissed, however, for imperfect
statements of the legal theory supporting the claim asserted.
See Id. at 346.
the pleading regime established by Twombly and
Iqbal, a court reviewing the sufficiency of a
complaint must take three steps: (1) take note of the
elements the plaintiff must plead to state a claim; (2)
identify allegations that, because they are no more than
conclusions, are not entitled to the assumption of truth; and
(3) assume the veracity of any well-pleaded factual
allegations and then determine whether those allegations
plausibly give rise to an entitlement to relief. Connelly
v. Lane Const. Corp., 809 F.3d 780, 787 (3d Cir. 2016)
(internal citations and quotations omitted). Elements are
sufficiently alleged when the facts in the complaint
"show" that the plaintiff is entitled to relief.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679 (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P.
8(a)(2)). Deciding whether a claim is plausible will be a
"context-specific task that requires the reviewing court
to draw on its judicial experience and common sense."