United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Hot Springs Division
O. Hickey, United States District Judge.
a civil rights action filed by Plaintiff Richard James
Laquerre pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff
proceeds pro se and in forma pauperis
(“IFP”). This matter is before the Court for
preservice screening under the Prison Litigation Reform Act
(“PLRA”). Pursuant to the PLRA, the Court must
dismiss an IFP plaintiff's complaint, or any portion of
the complaint, that is frivolous, malicious, or fails to
state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks
monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such
relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
April 28, 2017, Plaintiff filed this section 1983 lawsuit,
alleging that his constitutional rights were violated while
he was incarcerated in the Garland County Detention Center
(“GCDC”). Plaintiff alleges that he was denied
medical care, denied access to a law library, and denied
access to an adequate grievance procedure. (ECF No. 1, pp.
4-7). Plaintiff seeks compensatory and punitive damages.
alleges that Defendants Waggenhauser, Dukes, and Correctional
Medical Group denied him an MRI and x-ray “to see how
much more damage has been cause[d] to my shoulder, back, and
spine for slips and falls that happened in Garland County
Detention Center.” (ECF No. 1, p. 4). Plaintiff alleges
the slips and falls are causing him pain, and that he has
trouble cleaning and dressing himself as a result. In a later
filing, Plaintiff states he does not want to take addictive
pain medication for the rest of his life. (ECF No. 10, p. 1).
Plaintiff asserts denial-of-medical-care claims against
Defendants Waggenhauser, Dukes, and Correctional Medical
Group in both their official and individual capacities.
also alleges that unknown Defendants told him that he could
have caselaw or other legal information printed out for him,
“which is hard because [he] does not know what to ask
for.” (ECF No. 1, p. 5). He further alleges that in
March 2017, a law library was set up on a kiosk in the
GCDC's multi-use room, but he does not have sufficient
time to use it and he does not know how to use it. Plaintiff
asserts this claim against the unknown, unnamed Defendants in
their official capacity only.
alleges further that the GCDC has an inadequate grievance
procedure because he cannot “follow thru [sic] with the
complete procedure do [sic] to the length of time it takes to
have them answered, ” he did not get many of the
grievances back, and that “the form itself is not
completely printed out.” (ECF No. 1, p. 6). Plaintiff
asserts this claim against unknown, unnamed Defendants in
their official capacity only.
to the screening provisions of the PLRA, the Court must
determine whether the causes of action stated in
Plaintiff's complaint: (1) are frivolous or malicious,
(2) fail to state claims upon which relief may be granted, or
(3) seek monetary relief against a defendant who is immune
from such relief. See 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2)(B). A complaint is frivolous if it “lacks an
arguable basis either in law or in fact.” Neitzke
v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). To state a claim
under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must allege that a
defendant, acting under color of state law, deprived him of a
right, privilege, or immunity secured by the United States
Constitution or by federal law. West v. Atkins, 487
U.S. 42, 48 (1988).
Court will first address Plaintiff's claims against
Defendant McCormick. The Court will then address
Plaintiff's individual-capacity claims. Finally, the
Court will address Plaintiff's official-capacity claims.
lists Defendant McCormick in the case caption of his
complaint, but does not assert any claims against him or
allege any facts against him. Merely listing a defendant in a
case caption is insufficient to support a claim of a
constitutional violation by that defendant. Krych v.
Hass, 83 Fed. App'x. 854, 855 (8th Cir. 2003)
(citing Potter v. Clark, 497 F.2d 1206, 1207 (7th
Cir. 1974)) (per curiam). Even for an official-capacity claim
under section 1983, “a plaintiff must show either that
the official named in the suit took an action pursuant to an
unconstitutional governmental policy or custom . . . or that
he or she possessed final authority over the subject matter
at issue and used that authority in an unconstitutional
manner.” Nix v. Norman, 879 F.2d 429, 433 (8th
case, Plaintiff merely listed Defendant McCormick as a
defendant in the complaint's case caption. Plaintiff made
no claims or allegations against Defendant McCormick. Thus,
he failed to state a plausible claim against Defendant
McCormick. Therefore, the Court finds that Plaintiff's
complaint should be dismissed as to Defendant McCormick.