United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Fort Smith Division
HOLMES, III CHIEF U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE
Tiffany Autumn Thomas, filed this action pursuant to 42
U.S.C. §1983. She proceeds pro se and in
forma pauperis. Plaintiff is currently incarcerated in
the Washington County Detention Center.
case is before the Court for preservice screening under the
provisions of the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA).
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, the Court has the
obligation to screen any complaint in which a prisoner seeks
redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee of
a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a).
to the allegations of the Complaint (ECF No. 2), on January
19, 2016, the Plaintiff, Michael Thompson, and Thomas
Reddick, were stopped because Reddick “was all over the
road.” The vehicle and the hotel room they came out of
were searched. They were charged with possession of drug
paraphernalia and possession of marijuana. Plaintiff
maintains that none of the “stuff” belonged to
March 2, 2016, Plaintiff states she got a ride with Albert
Evan who stated he had two stops to make and then he would
drop her off. Unknown to her, Evan was under investigation.
After they made the two stops they realized they were being
followed, Evan was going to return the car to its owner and
drop Plaintiff off. As they pulled in, a police car hit the
lights. Plaintiff alleges Evan became scared, threw stuff
around the car, and then took off running. Plaintiff was on
parole, so she took off running leaving her phone behind in
the car. She maintains the only thing that belonged to her in
the car was the phone. A warrant was issued for
15, 2016, Plaintiff alleges she was sleeping at a
friend's house because she had been beaten up by a man
she was “dealing with” and was homeless.
Plaintiff alleges that the next thing she knew the parole
office was kicking in the door. Officer Napier asked
Plaintiff if she had anything and she gave him a
“pipe” she had. Plaintiff states that was all
that belonged to her in the room. Methamphetamine, marijuana,
a rocket launcher, and a 9 mm firearm was found in the house.
Plaintiff states she was charged with everything in the house
even though none of it belonged to her.
alleges she was told she “had to plead guilty to all
charges to get the 30 years [she had] signed up for.”
Plaintiff states she has been “locked up for a little
over two years” and needs help. She states she is doing
too much time for “everyone else's stuff.”
She also notes that the two guys connected with the first
stop are already out of prison.
the PLRA, the Court is obligated to screen the case prior to
service of process being issued. The Court must dismiss a
complaint, or any portion of it, if it contains claims that:
(1) are frivolous, malicious, or fail to state a claim upon
which relief may be granted; or, (2) seek monetary relief
from a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C.
is frivolous if “it lacks an arguable basis either in
law or fact.” Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S.
319, 325 (1989). A claim fails to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted if it does not allege “enough
facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 570 (2007). “In evaluating whether a pro
se plaintiff has asserted sufficient facts to state a
claim, we hold ‘a pro se complaint, however
inartfully pleaded ... to less stringent standards than
formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.'” Jackson
v. Nixon, 747 F.3d 537, 541 (8th Cir. 2014) (quoting
Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007)).
1983 requires proof of two elements: (1) the conduct
complained of must be committed by a person acting under
color of state law; and, (2) the conduct must deprive the
plaintiff of rights or privileges secured by the Constitution
or laws of the United States.
may not use the civil rights statutes as a substitute for
habeas corpus relief. In other words, she cannot seek
declaratory or injunctive relief relating to her confinement
and/or conviction. See e.g., Edwards v. Balisok, 520
U.S. 641, 648 (1997); Heck v. Humphrey, 512 U.S.
477, 483-89 (1994); Preiser v. Rodriquez, 411 U.S.
475, 500 (1973). As the Eighth Circuit in Eutzy v.
Tesar, 880 F.2d 1010, 1011 (8th Cir. 1989) said,
“we accept as fundamental the fact that Congress
intended habeas corpus to be the exclusive federal remedy for
all those who seek to attack state ...