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Roberts v. Soldan

United States District Court, D. Kansas

September 4, 2019

ROBERT FITZSJERALD ROBERTS, SR., Plaintiff,
v.
ROGER SOLDAN, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER

          Sam A. Crow, U.S. District Senior Judge

         Plaintiff has filed a pro se complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He is a prisoner at the Saline County Jail. This case is before the Court to screen plaintiff's complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A.

         I. Pro se standards

         “A pro se litigant's pleadings are to be construed liberally and held to a less stringent standard than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Hall v. Bellmon, 935 F.2d 1106, 1110 (10th Cir. 1991). A pro se litigant, however, is not relieved from following the same rules of procedure as any other litigant. See Green v. Dorrell, 969 F.2d 915, 917 (10th Cir. 1992), cert. denied, 507 U.S. 940 (1993). A district court should not “assume the role of advocate for the pro se litigant.” Hall, supra. Nor is the Court to “supply additional factual allegations to round out a plaintiff's complaint.” Whitney v. State of New Mexico, 113 F.3d 1170, 1173-74 (10th Cir. 1997).

         II. Screening standards

         Title 28 United State Code Section 1915A requires the Court to review cases filed by prisoners seeking redress from a governmental entity or employee to determine whether the complaint is frivolous, malicious or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. When deciding whether plaintiff's complaint “fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, ” the Court must determine whether the complaint contains “sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009)(quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)).

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. 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. The Court accepts the plaintiff's well-pled factual allegations as true and views them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff. United States v. Smith, 561 F.3d 1090, 1098 (10th Cir. 2009).

         The Court, however, will not accept broad allegations which lack sufficient detail to give fair notice of what plaintiff's claims are. Section 1983 plaintiffs must “make clear exactly who is alleged to have done what to whom, to provide each individual with fair notice as to the basis of the claims against him or her, as distinguished from collective allegations against the state.” Robbins v. Oklahoma ex rel. Dep't of Human Servs., 519 F.3d 1242, 1250 (10th Cir. 2008).

         III. The complaint

         This case arises from an incident on July 17, 2019, when plaintiff was attacked by another inmate in a common area of the jail. Plaintiff names as defendants Roger Soldan, the Saline County Sheriff and the following officers at the Saline County Jail: Stan Fruits; Angela Peck, Matthew Nelson, Benjamin McManigal, and Angela Finch. Plaintiff asserts that he was attacked, chased and punched several times by an inmate named Herrera. According to plaintiff, Herrera inflicted damage to plaintiff's mouth and right eye, and caused plaintiff to injure his knee.

         Plaintiff claims that defendant Peck watched the entire incident by video. Plaintiff asserts that Peck did not push the panic alarm to alert other staff members or try to intervene.

         Plaintiff contends that defendant Nelson was assigned to other security cameras. He claims that defendant Nelson also watched the attack without responding.

         Plaintiff asserts that defendant McManigal was the shift supervisor overseeing Peck and Nelson. He asserts that defendant Finch was in a supervisory position over McManigal; that defendant Fruits, as Captain of the jail, was Finch's direct supervisor; and that defendant Soldan, as Sheriff, ...


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