United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
C. HAMILTON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the Court upon the motion of pro se
plaintiff Timothy Headrick for leave to commence this action
without prepayment of the required filing fee. Having
reviewed the motion and the financial information submitted
in support, the Court will grant the motion, and assess an
initial partial filing fee of $2.41. See 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(b)(1). Furthermore, after reviewing the
complaint, the Court will partially dismiss the complaint,
and direct the Clerk of Court to issue process upon the
non-frivolous portions of the complaint.
Partial Filing Fee
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.
signed and sworn motion, plaintiff states that he is not
currently employed; that his last employment was in November
2017, when he earned $11.25 every two weeks; that he has
received no money in the past twelve months; and that he has
no money in a checking or savings account. ECF No. 3.
However, the inmate account statement plaintiff submitted in
support of his motion indicates otherwise. ECF No. 4.
Although the statement only covers approximately a six-week
period, it shows plaintiff receiving a payroll
in both February and March 2019, and that plaintiff received
a gift of cash from a friend or family member. Overall, the
inmate account statement indicates an approximate average
month deposit of $12.05. The Court finds that plaintiff has
insufficient funds in his prison account to pay the entire
fee. Therefore, the Court will assess an initial partial
filing fee of $2.41, which is twenty percent of
plaintiff's average monthly deposit.
Standard on Initial Review
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2), the Court is required to dismiss
a complaint filed in forma pauperis if it is
frivolous, is malicious, fails to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted, or seeks monetary relief against a
defendant who is immune from such relief. 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 pro se complaint under 28 U.S.C. §
1915, the Court accepts the well-pled facts as true,
White v. Clark, 750 F.2d 721, 722 (8th Cir. 1984),
and liberally construes the complaint. Erickson v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007); Haines v.
Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972). A “liberal
construction” means that if the essence of an
allegation is discernible, the district court should construe
the plaintiff's complaint in a way that permits his or
her claim to be considered within the proper legal framework.
Solomon v. Petray, 795 F.3d 777, 787 (8th Cir.
2015). However, even pro se complaints are required
to allege facts which, if true, state a claim for relief as a
matter of law. Martin v. Aubuchon, 623 F.2d 1282,
1286 (8th Cir. 1980). See also Stone v. Harry, 364
F.3d 912, 914-15 (8th Cir. 2004) (refusing to supply
additional facts or to construct a legal theory for the
pro se plaintiff that assumed facts that had not
is currently incarcerated at Potosi Correctional Center, but
he was a pretrial detainee at the St. Louis City Justice
Center when the allegations of his complaint took place.
Plaintiff brings his complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983,
against two medical service providers at the City Justice
Center: Dr. Fe Fuentes and Nurse Steph. These defendants are
employees of Corizon Health, Inc., the company contracted
with the State of Missouri to provide medical services to
inmates at the City Justice Center. Plaintiff sues both
defendants in their official and individual capacities.
April 20, 2018, plaintiff broke his ankle while playing
handball at the City Justice Center. As a result of the
break, plaintiff had a full leg cast on his right leg and he
was using crutches for mobility. ECF No. 1 at 2. On April 25,
2019, plaintiff filed complaints through the institutional
grievance process against both Dr. Fuentes and Nurse Steph.
Plaintiff does not detail the allegations of his grievances
except to say that he accused Nurse Steph of
“mistreatment.” Id. at 3.
following day, April 26, 2019, plaintiff slipped and fell
while going into a non-handicap shower stall. At the time,
the handicap shower in his unit was not working. According to
plaintiff, before he fell, Dr. Fuentes had been informed by
“several correctional officers” that plaintiff
needed to be placed in a handicap accessible unit or in the
infirmary because the handicap shower in his unit was not
working. Despite Dr. Fuentes knowing of plaintiff's cast
and the inoperable handicap shower in plaintiff's unit,
plaintiff alleges that Dr. Fuentes left him in his general
population unit thereby “forcing” plaintiff to
use a regular shower stall. ECF No. 1 at 2.
plaintiff slipped and fell, a medical emergency was called
and Nurses Steph and Jones arrived. Plaintiff was screaming
due to “excruciating pain” in both his broken
ankle and his tailbone. Id. at 3. Plaintiff alleges
that he could not move, so Nurse Steph told him to hold out
his hand by which she dragged plaintiff across the floor.
Plaintiff states that the shower floor is a “sandpaper
texture” such that his skin was scraped as he was
dragged. Plaintiff asserts that Nurse Steph ignored his
“cries to stop” the dragging. Id.
Plaintiff later received treatment for his scraped skin.
Plaintiff does not state if he suffered any injuries as a
result of his fall in the shower.
alleges that the actions taken toward him by both Dr. Fuentes
and Nurse Steph were in retaliation for the grievances he
filed against them. Plaintiff also asserts that Nurse
Steph's act of dragging him across the floor was a
malicious and sadistic attempt to “inflict the wanton
infliction of pain by using [the] floor as a meat
grinder.” ECF No. 1 at 3.
seeks declaratory ...