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Robinson v. State

United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Southeastern Division

February 8, 2019

STATE OF MISSOURI, et al., Defendants.



         This matter is before the Court on the motion of plaintiff Hosea L. Robinson, a prisoner and frequent filer of lawsuits, for leave to commence this civil action without prepayment of the required filing fee. Having reviewed the filing, the Court will grant plaintiff's motion to proceed in forma pauperis and assess an initial partial filing fee of $1.00 in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1). However, the complaint is defective because, among other things, it was not drafted on the Court's form. See E.D. Mo. Local Rule 2.06(A). The Court will give plaintiff the opportunity to submit an amended complaint; but, plaintiff's motion for appointment of counsel will be denied at this time.

         28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1)

         Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1), a prisoner bringing a civil action in forma pauperis is required to pay the full amount of the filing fee. If the prisoner has insufficient funds in his or her prison account to pay the entire fee, the Court must assess and, when funds exist, collect an initial partial filing fee of 20 percent of the greater of (1) the average monthly deposits in the prisoner's account, or (2) the average monthly balance in the prisoner's account for the prior six-month period. After payment of the initial partial filing fee, the prisoner is required to make monthly payments of 20 percent of the preceding month's income credited to the prisoner's account. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(2). The agency having custody of the prisoner will forward these monthly payments to the Clerk of Court each time the amount in the prisoner's account exceeds $10, until the filing fee is fully paid. Id.

         Based on the financial information plaintiff has submitted, the Court will assess an initial partial filing fee of $1.00. See Henderson v. Norris, 129 F.3d 481, 484 (8th Cir. 1997) (when a prisoner is unable to provide the Court with a certified copy of his prison account statement, the Court should assess an amount “that is reasonable, based on whatever information the court has about the prisoner's finances.”).

         Legal Standard on Initial Review

         Under 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.

         When 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.

         The Complaint

         Plaintiff's complaint titled “Suit for the Injunctive Relief of Court Ordered Federal Habeas Corpus, ” alleges violations of his rights under the “ADA” (the Americans with Disabilities Act) and the “ADAAA” (the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act). He names as defendants the “State of Missouri, Department of Corrections; et al.” He also seeks relief under the Eighth Amendment, alleging that he has been shown “callous and deliberate indifference” in regards to his chronic disabilities, which has placed his “life and health in imminent danger.” Plaintiff claims he has been denied access to medical equipment and medications for his chronic heart disease and his sever gum disease. He also alleges that correctional officers at Southeast Correctional Center, where he is currently incarcerated, have caused him physical injury by repeatedly forcing him to be exposed to metal detectors. He does not state the relief he seeks, only requests that the Court allow him to state damages “at a later date.” ECF No. 1.


         Plaintiff's allegations are conclusory and fail to explain how any particular individual was personally responsible for violating his rights, thereby making it difficult for the Court to review his assertions under 28 U.S.C. § 1915. However, plaintiff's complaint is also defective because it is not filed on a court form. Because plaintiff is proceeding pro se, the Court will allow him to file an amended complaint on the Court's form.

         The Court notes that many of the claims raised in plaintiff's complaint appear to be the same claims raised in previously-filed suits before this Court. See Robinson v. St. Louis City, No. 4:18-cv-1853-HEA (filed Oct. 24, 2018; still pending); Robinson v. State of Mo., No. 4:18-cv-1225-JAR (dismissed Oct. 24, 2018; appeal dismissed Jan. 31, 2019); Robinson v. State of Mo., No. 4:18-cv-114-RLW (dismissed Jan. 29, 2018); Robinson v. Payne; No. 4:18-cv-1224-CDP (dismissed Oct. 29, 2018); Robinson v. Glass; No. 4:17-cv-1628-PLC (dismissed Sept. 28, 2017; appeal dismissed Jan. 19, 2018). In fact, the “evidence” attached to plaintiff's complaint is marked as exhibits from a different suit. See ECF No. 1-1. The plaintiff is warned that he may not proceed in forma pauperis more than once on the same claims. Cooper v. Delo, 997 F.2d 376, 377 (8th Cir. 1993) (§ 1915(e) dismissal has res judicata effect on future IFP petitions). Also, the Court may dismiss a duplicative complaint that raises issues that are directly related to issues in another pending action brought by the same party. Aziz v. Burrows, 976 F.2d 1158 (8th Cir. 1992). Plaintiff's amended complaint should be clear on how the claims raised in this matter differ from claims already considered by the Court, and from claims pending in other suits before the Court.

         Plaintiff has twenty-one (21) days from the date of this Order to file an amended complaint in accordance with the specific instructions set forth here. All claims in the action must be included in one, ...

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