United States District Court, D. Kansas
Crow, U.S. District Senior Judge.
has filed a pro se complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. He is a prisoner at the El Dorado Correctional
Facility and was previously housed by the Shawnee County
Department of Corrections. This case is before the Court to
screen plaintiff’s complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
Pro se standards
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).
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
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
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).
Court, however, will not accept broad allegations which lack
sufficient detail to give fair notice of what
plaintiff’s claims are. Nor is the court obliged to
accept allegations which amount to legal conclusions as
opposed to facts. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678.
“Thus, mere ‘labels and conclusions' and
‘a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of
action’ will not suffice” to state a claim.
Khalik v. United Air Lines, 671 F.3d 1188, 1191
(10th Cir. 2012) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555).
alleges that in April 2019 while he was incarcerated by the
Shawnee County Department of Corrections, he was involved in
a physical altercation with two other parties. Seven to ten
correctional officers arrived and broke up the fight.
Plaintiff and the other persons fighting were handcuffed and
placed on the floor face down. Plaintiff alleges that the
officers were escorting one of the individuals whose name is
McClaughlen out of the module and stopped for some
reason when he was close to plaintiff who was still on the
floor. Plaintiff claims that McClaughlen kicked plaintiff in
the head with extreme force causing pain, lingering
headaches, and permanent damage. Plaintiff blames this on
defendants’ “carelessness.” Doc. No. 1, p.
has named Brian Cole, the Director of the Shawnee County
Corrections Department, as a defendant. Plaintiff has also
named two correctional officers as defendants: Lt. Loneberg
and Officer Rhoads. Plaintiff does not describe any specific
action or failure to act by defendant Cole. He states that
defendant Rhoads handcuffed plaintiff and that defendant
Loneberg handcuffed McClaughen. Plaintiff does not identify
the officers who escorted McClaughen out and then stopped so
near plaintiff that McClaughen had the opportunity to kick
Section 1983 standards
plaintiff bringing a § 1983 claim must “allege the
violation of a right secured by the Constitution and laws of
the United States, and must show that the alleged deprivation
was committed by a person acting under color of state
law.” Bruner v. Baker, 506 F.3d 1021,
1025–26 (10th Cir. 2007)(internal quotation marks
omitted). To bring a claim under § 1983, a plaintiff
must allege a causal connection, i.e., that the defendants
“set in motion a series of events that caused the
constitutional violation.” Schneider v. City of
Grand Junction Police Dep't, 717 F.3d 760, 779 (10th
Cir. 2013). It is not enough that a defendant acted in a
supervisory capacity when another defendant violated a
plaintiff’s constitutional rights. Keith v.
Koerner, 843 F.3d 833, 838 (10th Cir. 2016).
Plaintiff’s allegations must plausibly demonstrate that
there was an affirmative link between the supervisor and the
constitutional violation. Id. This requires
allegations showing: 1) personal involvement; 2) causation;
and 3) state of mind (deliberate indifference). Id.
It is well established that negligence is not a basis for
liability under § 1983; liability must be predicated
upon a deliberate ...