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Simpkins v. Cobb

United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Monroe Division

September 4, 2018

CURTIS RAY SIMPKINS
v.
KEVIN W. COBB, ET AL.

         SECTION P

          TERRY A. DOUGHTY JUDGE.

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          Karen L. Hayes United States Magistrate Judge.

         Plaintiff Curtis Ray Simpkins, a detainee at Franklin Parish Detention Center proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis, filed the instant Complaint on July 23, 2018, under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He names the following Defendants: Sheriff Kevin W. Cobb, Warden Chad Lee, Capt. Taylor, and Deputy Major.[1] For the following reasons, it is recommended that Plaintiff's claims be DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.

         Background

         Plaintiff alleges that, on either June 9, 2018, or July 9, 2018, he discovered that someone obtained and used his bank card and Louisiana Purchase Card: someone deducted $1, 500.00 from his savings account and $377.00 from his Louisiana Purchase Card. After inquiring, a lieutenant informed Plaintiff that his cards were “removed and given out . . . .” Captain Taylor later promised Plaintiff, on behalf of Warden Chad Lee, that he would “work everything out” for Plaintiff; however, three months elapsed and Plaintiff has not been compensated. Plaintiff seeks “to be fully refunded.”

         Law and Analysis

         1. Preliminary Screening

         Plaintiff is a detainee who has been permitted to proceed in forma pauperis. As a prisoner seeking redress from an officer or employee of a governmental entity, his complaint is subject to preliminary screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A.[2] See Martin v. Scott, 156 F.3d 578, 579-80 (5th Cir.1998) (per curiam). Because he is proceeding in forma pauperis, his 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.

         A 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. Courts are also afforded the unusual power to pierce the veil of the factual allegations and dismiss those claims whose factual contentions are clearly baseless. Id.

         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); accord Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). Likewise, a complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted if it appears that no relief could be granted under any set of facts that could be proven consistent with the allegations of the complaint. Of course, in making this determination, the court must assume that all of the plaintiff's factual allegations are true. Bradley v. Puckett, 157 F.3d 1022, 1025 (5th Cir. 1998).

         A civil rights plaintiff must support his claims with specific facts demonstrating a constitutional deprivation and may not simply rely on conclusory allegations. Ashcroft, 556 U.S. at 662; Schultea v. Wood, 47 F.3d 1427, 1433 (5th Cir. 1995). Nevertheless, a district court is bound by the allegations in a plaintiff's complaint and is “not free to speculate that the plaintiff ‘might' be able to state a claim if given yet another opportunity to add more facts to the complaint.” Macias v. Raul A. (Unknown) Badge No. 153, 23 F.3d 94, 97 (5th Cir. 1994).

         A hearing need not be conducted for every pro se complaint. Wilson v. Barrientos, 926 F.2d 480, 483 n.4 (5th Cir. 1991). A district court may dismiss a prisoner's civil rights complaint as frivolous based upon the complaint and exhibits alone. Green v. McKaskle, 788 F.2d 1116, 1120 (5th Cir. 1986).

         2. Lost or ...


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