United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Southeastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
G. FLEISSIG UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
a prisoner, seeks leave to proceed in forma pauperis in this
civil action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Having reviewed
Plaintiff's financial information, the Court assesses a
partial initial filing fee of $1.50, which is twenty percent
of his average monthly deposit. See 28 U.S.C. §
1915(b). Additionally, the Court will require Plaintiff to
submit an amended complaint.
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e), the Court is required to dismiss a
complaint filed in forma pauperis if it is frivolous,
malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted. To state a claim for relief, a complaint must plead
more than “legal conclusions” and
“[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of
action [that are] supported by mere conclusory
statements.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662,
678 (2009). A plaintiff must demonstrate a plausible claim
for relief, which is more than a “mere possibility of
misconduct.” Id. at 679. “A claim has
facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content
that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that
the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Id. at 678. Determining whether a complaint states a
plausible claim for relief is a context-specific task that
requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial
experience and common sense. Id. at 679.
reviewing a complaint under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e), the
Court accepts the well-pled facts as true. Furthermore, the
Court liberally construes the allegations.
brings this action against mail room and classification staff
at the Southeast Correctional Center (“SECC”). He
says SECC “officials” withheld mail from inmates,
including religious texts and letters from family members.
under § 1983 requires a causal link to, and direct
responsibility for, the alleged deprivation of rights.”
Madewell v. Roberts, 909 F.2d 1203, 1208 (8th Cir.
1990); see Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 676
(2009) (“Because vicarious liability is inapplicable to
Bivens and § 1983 suits, a plaintiff must plead
that each Government-official defendant, through the
official's own individual actions, has violated the
Constitution.”). In this case, there are no factual
allegations showing that any of the named Defendants were
directly responsible for denying Plaintiff access to his
mail. Therefore, the complaint fails to state a claim upon
which relief can be granted.
the complaint does not state whether defendants are being
sued in their official or individual capacities. Where a
“complaint is silent about the capacity in which
[plaintiff] is suing defendant, [a district court must]
interpret the complaint as including only official-capacity
claims.” Egerdahl v. Hibbing Community
College, 72 F.3d 615, 619 (8th Cir. 1995); Nix v.
Norman, 879 F.2d 429, 431 (8th Cir. 1989). Naming a
government official in his or her official capacity is the
equivalent of naming the government entity that employs the
official, in this case the State of Missouri.
Willv.MichiganDep=tofStatePolice, 491 U.S. 58, 71
(1989). “[N]either a State nor its officials acting in
their official capacity are ‘persons' under §
1983.” Id. So, the complaint fails to state a
claim for this reason as well.
Plaintiff is proceeding pro se, the Court will allow him to
file an amended complaint. Plaintiff is warned that the
filing of an amended complaint replaces the original
complaint, and so he must include each and every one of his
claims in the amended complaint. E.g., In re
Wireless Telephone Federal Cost Recovery Fees
Litigation, 396 F.3d 922, 928 (8th Cir. 2005). Any
claims from the original complaint that are not included in
the amended complaint will be considered abandoned.
Id. Plaintiff must allege how each and every
Defendant is directly responsible for the alleged harm. In
order to sue Defendants in their individual capacities,
Plaintiff must specifically say so in the complaint. If
Plaintiff fails to sue Defendants in their individual
capacities, this action may be subject to dismissal.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiff's motion to proceed
in forma pauperis [ECF No. 2] is GRANTED.
FURTHER ORDERED that Plaintiff must pay an initial filing fee
of $1.50 within twenty-one (21) days of the date of this
Order. Plaintiff is instructed to make his remittance payable
to “Clerk, United States District Court, ” and to
include upon it: (1) his name; (2) his prison registration
number; (3) the case number; and (4) that the remittance is
for an original proceeding.
FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerk is directed to send Plaintiff
a prisoner civil rights complaint form.
FURTHER ORDERED that, no later than twenty-one (21) days from
the date of this Order, Plaintiff ...