United States District Court, D. Delaware
Amir Fatir ("Plaintiff"), an inmate at the James T.
Vaughn Correctional Center (*'VCC), Smyrna, Delaware,
filed this lawsuit on October 8, 2018. (D.I. 2) He proceeds
pro se and has been granted leave to proceed in
forma pauperis. The Court proceeds to review and screen
the complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2) and
filed the Complaint alleging violations of his constitutional
rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (D.I. 2) The
Complaint contains 49 pages, is raised against 25 defendants,
and contains 75 counts. Distilled, the Complaint raises
medical needs (id. at Counts 1-11), retaliation
(id. at Counts 12-18), due process (id. at
Counts 19-56, 65), housing and classification (id.
at Counts 57-64, 66-72), and conditions of confinement
(id. at Counts 73-75) claims. Plaintiff seeks
compensatory damages, punitive damages (ranging from five
hundred thousand to five million dollars depending upon the
defendant), and injunctive and declaratory relief.
(Id. at 46-49)
STANDARD OF REVIEW
federal court may properly dismiss an action sua
sponte under the screening provisions of 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(2)(B) and § 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
also 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2) (in forma
pauperis actions); 28 U.S.C. § 1915A (actions in
which prisoner seeks redress from a governmental defendant);
42 U.S.C. § 1997e (prisoner actions brought with respect
to prison conditions). 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. Partus, 551 U.S. 89, 93 (2007).
Because Plaintiff proceeds pro se, his pleading is
liberally construed and his complaint, "however in
artfully pleaded, must be held to less stringent standards
than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers." Erickson
v. Pardus, 551 U.S. at 94 (citations omitted).
8(a)(1) states that a pleading that states a claim for relief
must contain a demand for the relief sought. Rule 8(d)(1)
states, in pertinent part, that "[e]ach allegation must
be simple, concise and direct." Rule 20(1)(a)(2), which
is also applicable, states, in pertinent part, as follows:
Persons may... be joined in one action as defendants if any
right to relief is asserted against them jointly, severally,
or in the alternative with respect to or arising out of the
same transaction, occurrence, or series of transactions or
occurrences; and any question of law or fact common to all
defendants will arise in the action.
Civ. P. 20(a) (2)(A) and (B). in exercising its discretion
[to join parties], the District Court must provide a reasoned
analysis that comports with the requirements of the Rule, and
that is based on the specific fact pattern presented by the
plaintiffs and claims before the court." Hagan v.
Rogers, 570 F.3d 146, 157 (3d Cir. 2009); see
also Boretsky v. Governor of New Jersey, 433
Fed.Appx. 73, 77 (3d Cir. 2011).
review of the Complaint reveals five discrete claims. There
are 25 named defendants. The five claims, contained in 75
counts and raised against 25 defendants, violates
Fed.R.Civ.P. 20(a). Some defendants, particularly the
supervisory defendants, are named in many count claims.
25 defendants in conjunction with 75 counts makes the
Complaint unmanageable. In addition, the five discrete claims
appear to have different factual and legal issues. While
joinder is encouraged for purposes of judicial economy, the
"Federal Rules do not contemplate joinder of different
actions against different parties which present entirely
different factual and legal issues." Zhu v.
Countrywide Realty Co., Inc., 160 F.Supp.2d 1210, 1225
(D. Kan. 2001) (citation omitted).
much of the complaint is deficiently pled. It consists of
legal conclusions without supporting facts and fails to meet
the pleading requirements of Iqbal. See Ascroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009). It also raises claims that
are not cognizable constitutional violations. For example,
many claims are raised against Delaware Department of
Correction employees based upon their supervisory positions.
However, there is no respondeat superior liability under
§ 1983. See Parkell v. Danberg, 833 F.3d 313,
330 (3d Cir. 2016). Or, the allegations complain of housing
or prisoner classification. Yet it is well established that
an inmate does not possess a liberty interest arising from
the Due Process Clause in assignment to a particular custody
level or security classification or a place of confinement.
See Wilkinson v. Austin, 545 U.S. 209, 221-22
Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1995 ("PLRA"),
which substantially changed the judicial treatment of civil
rights actions by state and federal prisoners, also compels
compliance with Rule 20. Specifically, under the PLRA the
full filing fee must ultimately be paid in a non-habeas
action. Allowing a prisoner to include a plethora of
separate, independent claims, would circumvent the filing fee
requirements of the PLRA." Mincy v. Klem, 2007
WL 1576444, at *1 (M.D. Pa. May 30, 2007). See George v.
Smith, 507 F.3d 605, 507 (7th Cir. 2007) ("The
"[unrelated claims against different defendants belong
in different suits, not only to prevent the sort of morass
that this [multiple]-claim, [multiplej-defendant suit
produced but also to ensure that prisoners pay the required
filing fees."). See also Smith v. Kirby, 53
Fed.Appx. 14, 16 (10th Cir. 2002) (finding no abuse of
discretion where district court denied leave to amend or
supplement the complaint where the "new claims were not
relevant to the claims before that court...."). As a
frequent filer, Plaintiff is well aware of pleading
upon the foregoing discussion, the Complaint will be
dismissed without prejudice for failure to state claims upon
which relief may be granted and as noncompliant with
Fed.R.Civ.P. 20. Plaintiff will be given an opportunity to
file an amended complaint. He is cautioned that the amended
complaint must comply with Rule 20 and involve only related
claims or parties. To the extent that Plaintiff believes that
he has been subjected to more than one violation of his
rights, and to the extent that these violations are unrelated
to each other, he should file separate
complaints addressing each violation along with
separate motions to proceed in forma pauperis.
"It must be a new pleading which stands by itself as an