United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Alexandria Division
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
H.L. Perez-Montes United States Magistrate Judge
the Court is a civil rights complaint (42 U.S.C. § 1983)
filed by pro se Plaintiff Chad Cooper (“Cooper”).
Cooper is a pretrial detainee incarcerated at the Concordia
Parish Correctional Facility in Ferriday, Louisiana. Cooper
complains that his constitutional rights were violated by the
facility's nurses and Lt. Seyfarth.
Cooper cannot establish a constitutional violation or a
physical injury, his complaint should be dismissed.
alleges that he “passed out” in his dorm. (Doc.
1, p. 3). Other inmates notified the officers, who brought a
wheelchair and transported Cooper to check his blood
pressure. (Doc. 1, p. 3). Cooper was advised that he would
see a nurse in the morning. Cooper did not see a nurse until
he filed a grievance approximately 10 days later. (Doc. 1, p.
seeks monetary damages and an apology from the medical staff.
Law and Analysis
Cooper's complaint is subject to screening under
§§ 1915(e)(2) and 1915A.
is an inmate who has been allowed to proceed in forma
pauperis. (Doc. 8). As a prisoner seeking redress from
an officer or employee of a governmental entity, Cooper's
complaint is subject to preliminary screening pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 1915A. See Martin v. Scott, 156 F.3d
578, 579-80 (5th Cir. 1998) (per curiam). Because he is
proceeding in forma pauperis, Cooper's complaint
is also subject to screening under § 1915(e)(2). Both
§§ 1915(e)(2)(B) and 1915A(b) provide for sua
sponte dismissal of the complaint, or any portion
thereof, if the Court finds it is frivolous or malicious, if
it fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted,
or if it seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is
immune from such relief.
complaint is frivolous when it “lacks an arguable basis
either in law or in fact.” Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). A claim lacks an
arguable basis in law when it is “based on an
indisputably meritless legal theory.” Id. at
327. A complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief may
be granted when it fails to plead “enough facts to
state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.”
Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570
(2007); Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009).
Cooper has not alleged deliberate indifference with
respect to the delay in medical care.
detainees are protected by the Due Process Clause of the
Fourteenth Amendment. Cupit v. Jones, 835 F.2d 82,
84-85 (5th Cir. 1987). To succeed in a § 1983 action
based on “episodic acts or omissions” in
violation of Fourteenth Amendment rights, a pretrial detainee
must show subjective deliberate indifference by the
defendants. Hare v. City of Corinth, 74 F.3d 633,
643 (5th Cir. 1996) (en banc). That is, the plaintiff must
show that the official knew of and disregarded a substantial
risk of serious harm. See Domino v. Tex. Dep't of
Criminal Justice, 239 F.3d 752, 755 (5th Cir. 2001).
“Actions and decisions by officials that are merely
inept, erroneous, ineffective, or negligent do not amount to
deliberate indifference.” Alton v. Tex. A & M
Univ., 168 F.3d 196, 201 (5th Cir. 1999). To reach the
level of deliberate indifference, official conduct must be
“wanton, ” which is defined to mean
“reckless.” Johnson v. Treen, 759 F.2d
1236, 1238 (5th Cir. 1985).
establish liability based on a delay in medical treatment, a
plaintiff must show deliberate indifference to serious
medical needs that resulted in substantial harm. Easter
v. Powell, 467 F.3d 459, 464 (5th Cir. 2006). Cooper
alleges that, prior to his episode of fainting, he had a
cold. When he was examined by the nurse, he was diagnosed
with vertigo. (Doc. 1, p. 3). First, it is doubtful that
vertigo and a cold amount to a serious medical need. Cf.
Diaz v. Martel, 2:10-CV-1388, 2014 WL 3849932, at *14
(E.D. Cal. Aug. 5, 2014) (degenerative disc disease, shoulder
tendinitis, and vertigo are serious medical needs);
Lemaire v. Maass, 745 F.Supp. 623, 636 n. 8 (D. Ore.
1990), vacated on other grounds, 12 F.3d 1444 (9th Cir. 1993)
(depression in ...