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Rodriguez v. Torres

United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Fayetteville Division

December 11, 2018

FRANK CARMONA RODRIGUEZ PLAINTIFF
v.
DEPUTY IVAN TORRES; SHERIFF HOLLOWAY; CAPTAIN GUYLL; and TURN KEY HEALTH CLINICS DEFENDANTS

          ORDER

          TIMOTHY L. BROOKS JUDGE

         Plaintiff Frank Carmona Rodriguez proceeds in this matter pro se and in forma pauperis pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In his First Amended Complaint (Doc. 30), he asserts claims for excessive force, unconstitutional conditions of confinement, and deliberate indifference to a medical condition. He names as Defendants Deputy Ivan Torres, Sheriff Holloway, Captain Guyll, and Turn Key Health Clinics. Currently pending before the Court is a Motion to Dismiss filed by Defendants Holloway and Guyll (Doc. 32), and a Motion to Dismiss filed by Defendants Holloway, Guyll, and Torres (Doc. 38). Also pending is a Joint Stipulation of Dismissal filed by the Plaintiff and Defendants Holloway, Guyll, and Torres (Doc. 43).

         I. BACKGROUND

         In their Motion to Dismiss filed on October 1, 2018 (Doc. 32), Defendants Holloway and Guyll argue that the Plaintiffs First Amended Complaint fails to state facts showing that either of them engaged in wrongful activity or caused damage or injury to the Plaintiff. The same day the motion was filed, the Court entered a text-only Order (Doc. 35) directing Plaintiff to file a response by October 22, 2018. In the Order, the Plaintiff was "advised that failure to timely and properly comply . . . shall result in the dismissal of this action, without prejudice, pursuant to Local Rule 5.5(c)(2)." Id. The Plaintiff did not respond to the Motion to Dismiss by the appointed deadline.

         Defendants Holloway, Guyll, and Torres filed a subsequent Motion to Dismiss (Doc. 38) seeking dismissal of all claims against them due to Plaintiff's failure to comply with the Court's text-only Order of October 1. On October 29, 2018, the Court entered another text-only Order, directing Plaintiff to respond to Defendants' newest motion to dismiss by November 19, 2018. (Doc. 41). On November 7, 2018, Plaintiff responded to both pending motions to dismiss in the same document, stating succinctly that he "would like to ask the court for a denial on the dismissal of this action." (Doc. 42). Also on November 7, 2018, Defendants Holloway, Guyll, and Torres joined the Plaintiff in filing a Stipulation of Dismissal concerning Plaintiffs claims about overcrowding, lack of working TB lights, dirty ventilation/bad-smelling air, excessive noise, and sub-standard food in the jail. See Doc. 43. Plaintiff then filed a further response to Holloway's and Guyll's Motion to Dismiss (Doc. 32), confirming that he wished to dismiss the claims that were listed in the Join Stipulation, but pursue all the rest of his claims. See Doc. 47. Below, the Court will consider the parties' Joint Stipulation and then rule on the pending Motions to Dismiss.

         II. MOTIONS

         A. Joint Stipulation of Dismissal (Doc. 43)

         Pursuant to the Joint Stipulation of Dismissal filed by the Plaintiff and Defendants Holloway, Guyll, and Torres, all claims alleging that Plaintiffs rights were violated due to unconstitutional conditions of confinement-including overcrowding, lack of working TB lights, dirty ventilation/bad-smelling air, excessive noise, and sub-standard food-are DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE.

         B. Motions to Dismiss (Docs. 32, 38)

         1. Legal Standard

          Rule 8(a) contains the general pleading rules and requires a complaint to present "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). "In order to meet this standard, and survive a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), 'a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'" Braden v. Wal- Mart Stores, Inc., 588 F.3d 585, 594 (8th Cir. 2009) (quoting Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (internal quotations omitted)). "A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged." Ashcroft, 556 U.S. at 678. While the Court will liberally construe a pro se plaintiff's complaint, the plaintiff must allege sufficient facts to support his claims. See Stone v. Harry, 364 F.3d 912, 914 (8th Cir. 2004).

         2. Motion to Dismiss for Failure to Comply with a Court Order (Doc. 38)

         Holloway, Guyll, and Torres argue in their more recent Motion to Dismiss (Doc. 38) that the Court should dismiss Plaintiffs claims due to his failure to comply with an order directing him to file a response to a motion by a date certain. The Court agrees that Plaintiff filed his response to the motion out of time, and in doing so, also violated the Court's text-only Order (Doc. 35) that set the response deadline. With all that said, however, the Court in its discretion chooses to excuse Plaintiffs lateness in filing in favor of considering his response to the motion on the merits. For these reasons, Defendants* more recent Motion to Dismiss (Doc. 38) is DENIED.

         3. Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a ...


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