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Biyiklioglu v. St. Tammany Parish Jail

United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana

June 2, 2015



DANIEL E. KNOWLES, III, Magistrate Judge.

Plaintiff, Giray C. Biyiklioglu, filed this pro se and in forma pauperis complaint against the St. Tammany Parish Jail and the "U.S. Marshalls" [sic], asserting a claim that his rights were violated when the defendants failed to protect him from violence at the hands of a fellow inmate.[1] The undersigned then issued an order advising plaintiff that neither the St. Tammany Parish Jail nor the United States Marshal's Service was a proper defendant and directing him to file an amended complaint.[2] Plaintiff thereafter filed an amended complaint, adding the following defendants: David J. Horchar; Nico Paternostro; St. Tammany Parish Sheriff Jack Strain; and United States Marshal Genny May.[3]

Defendant May then filed a "Motion to Dismiss, or Alternatively, Motion for Summary Judgment."[4] Plaintiff opposed that motion, [5] May filed a reply to that opposition, [6] and plaintiff filed a sur-reply.[7] For the following reasons, the undersigned recommends that the motion be granted.

May first argues that plaintiff's allegations against her are insufficient to meet the basic pleading requirements of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and to state a claim on which relief can be granted. The United States Supreme Court has explained:

Under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2), a pleading must contain a "short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." As the Court held in [ Bell Atlantic Corp. v.] Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 167 L.Ed.2d 929 [2007], the pleading standard Rule 8 announces does not require "detailed factual allegations, " but it demands more than an unadorned, the-defendant-unlawfully-harmed-me accusation. Id., at 555, 127 S.Ct. 1955 (citing Papasan v. Allain, 478 U.S. 265, 286, 106 S.Ct. 2932, 92 L.Ed.2d 209 (1986)). A pleading that offers "labels and conclusions" or "a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do." 550 U.S., at 555, 127 S.Ct. 1955. Nor does a complaint suffice if it tenders "naked assertion[s]" devoid of "further factual enhancement." Id., at 557, 127 S.Ct. 1955.
To survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to "state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face." Id., at 570, 127 S.Ct. 1955. 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. Id., at 556, 127 S.Ct. 1955. The plausibility standard is not akin to a "probability requirement, " but it asks for more than a sheer possibility that a defendant has acted unlawfully. Ibid. Where a complaint pleads facts that are "merely consistent with" a defendant's liability, it "stops short of the line between possibility and plausibility of entitlement to relief.'" Id., at 557, 127 S.Ct. 1955 (brackets omitted).
Two working principles underlie our decision in Twombly. First, the tenet that a court must accept as true all of the allegations contained in a complaint is inapplicable to legal conclusions. Threadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice. Id., at 555, 127 S.Ct. 1955 (Although for the purposes of a motion to dismiss we must take all of the factual allegations in the complaint as true, we "are not bound to accept as true a legal conclusion couched as a factual allegation" (internal quotation marks omitted)). Rule 8 marks a notable and generous departure from the hyper-technical, code-pleading regime of a prior era, but it does not unlock the doors of discovery for a plaintiff armed with nothing more than conclusions. Second, only a complaint that states a plausible claim for relief survives a motion to dismiss. Id., at 556, 127 S.Ct. 1955. Determining whether a complaint states a plausible claim for relief will, as the Court of Appeals observed, be a context-specific task that requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial experience and common sense. 490 F.3d, at 157-158. But where the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to infer more than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has alleged - but it has not "show[n]" - "that the pleader is entitled to relief." Fed. Rule Civ. Proc. 8(a)(2).
In keeping with these principles a court considering a motion to dismiss can choose to begin by identifying pleadings that, because they are no more than conclusions, are not entitled to the assumption of truth. While legal conclusions can provide the framework of a complaint, they must be supported by factual allegations. When there are well-pleaded factual allegations, a court should assume their veracity and then determine whether they plausibly give rise to an entitlement to relief.

Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678-79 (2009).

In his amended complaint, plaintiff stated his claim as follows:

The plaintiff, Mr. Giray C. Biyiklioglu, was arrested on April 27, 2012, and charged with federal wire fraud charges. While being held as a pre-trial detainee in the St. Tammany Parish Jail, Mr. Biyiklioglu suffered second degree battery at the hands of his fellow prisoner.
On or about August 2, 2013, Mr. Biyiklioglu requested help from Pot deputy Mr. Nico Paternostro that his cellmate Mr. Myron Saunders threatened to fight him unless Mr. Biyiklioglu move out from cell # A202. Pot deputy Mr. Paternostro informed Mr. Biyiklioglu and Mr. Saunders that upon consulting with Mr. David J. Horchar, who is his shift supervisor, he would not separate them unless they both agree to protective custody status. Although Mr. Biyiklioglu requested protective custody, Mr. Saunders rejected, and eventually no action was taken to protect Mr. Biyiklioglu.
On or about August 3, 2013, Mr. Saunders assaulted Mr. Biyiklioglu and broke his jaw and nose. Deputies removed Mr. Biyiklioglu from the cell and took him to the ...

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