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Robertson v. Coley

United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lake Charles Division

September 20, 2018

ALBERT VERNON ROBERTSON DOC # 241116
v.
WARDEN COLEY, ET AL.

         SECTION P

          MEMORANDUM ORDER

          KATHLEEN KAY, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Before the court is a civil rights complaint [doc. 1] filed pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 by plaintiff Albert Vernon Robertson, who is proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis in this matter. Robertson is an inmate in the custody of the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections and is currently incarcerated at Dixon Correctional Center in Jackson, Louisiana. His complaint relates to events that occurred while he was incarcerated at Allen Correctional Center (“ALC”) in Kinder, Louisiana.

         I.

         Background

         Robertson alleges that he received inadequate medical care from certain personnel at Allen Correctional Facility (Nurse West, Nurse Poullard, and Nurse Hilda) when they refused him attention for a high fever over the course of four emergency sick calls on or about August 7, 2017, and falsely recorded that fever as being only low-grade. Doc. 1, pp. 2-3. As a result Robertson reports that he was admitted to a hospital with sepsis for four days and was told by the ambulance driver that he had almost died. Id. He now files suit against the above-named medical staff, as well as ALC Warden Coley [sic], under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, seeking compensatory damages and injunctive relief in the form of termination of the three nurses.

         II.

         Law & Analysis

         A. Frivolity Review

         Robertson has been granted leave to proceed in forma pauperis in this matter. Accordingly, his complaint is subject to screening under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2), which provides for sua sponte dismissal of the complaint or any portion thereof if the court determines that it is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(i)-(iii).

         A complaint is frivolous if it lacks an arguable basis in law or fact. Gonzalez v. Wyatt, 157 F.3d 1016, 1019 (5th Cir. 1998). A complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted if it is clear the plaintiff cannot prove any set of facts in support of his claim that would entitle him to relief. Doe v. Dallas Indep. Sch. Dist., 153 F.3d 211, 215 (5th Cir. 1998). When determining whether a complaint is frivolous or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, the court must accept the plaintiff's allegations as true. Horton v. Cockrell, 70 F.3d 397, 400 (5th Cir. 1995) (frivolity); Bradley v. Puckett, 157 F.3d at 1025 (failure to state a claim).

         B. Section 1983

         Federal law provides a cause of action against any person who, under the color of law, acts to deprive another person of any right, privilege, or immunity secured by the Constitution and laws of the United States. 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Thus, in order to hold the defendants liable, a plaintiff must allege facts to show (1) that a constitutional right has been violated and (2) that the conduct complained of was committed by a person acting under color of state law; that is, that the defendant was a state actor. West v. Atkins, 108 S.Ct. 2250, 2254-55 (1988).

         C. Theories ...


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