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Kevin Young v. C/O Slatowski

March 22, 2011

KEVIN YOUNG,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
C/O SLATOWSKI, ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Slomsky, J.

OPINION

I. INTRODUCTION

On February 22, 2011, Plaintiff Kevin Young filed a Third Amended Complaint against Keith Slatowski (in his individual capacity), Joseph O'Malley (in his individual capacity), and Nurse Marjorie Lengel (in her individual capacity), alleging a violation of his Eighth Amendment rights pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1983 (Doc. No. 102).*fn1 Before the Court is Defendant Nurse Marjorie Lengel's Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Third Amended Complaint (Doc. No. 104), which incorporates arguments made in Defendant Nurse Lengel's Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Second Amended Complaint (Doc. No. 90). For reasons that follow, the Court will grant Defendant Lengel's Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Third Amended Complaint and she will be dismissed as a defendant in this case.

II. SUMMARY OF PROCEDURAL HISTORY

On October 19, 2009, appointed counsel entered an appearance on behalf of Plaintiff, who had been proceeding pro se in this matter for approximately two years. Thereafter, Plaintiff was granted leave to file an Amended Complaint and filed the new Complaint on March 10, 2010 (Doc. No. 76). The Complaint alleged violations of Plaintiff's Eighth Amendment rights against the County of Montgomery Correctional Facility and Defendants Nurse Lengel, Officer Keith Slatowski, and Officer Kevin O'Malley, each in his or her individual and official capacity. (Id.) Plaintiff was then granted leave to file a Second Amended Complaint, and that Complaint was filed on August 5, 2010, against the County of Montgomery and Defendants Lengel, Officer Keith Slatowski, and Officer Kevin O'Malley, each in his or her individual and official capacity (Doc. No. 88).

On August 23, 2010, the County of Montgomery moved to dismiss the Complaint in its entirety and Defendants Slatowski and O'Malley moved to dismiss the Complaint against them in their official capacity. (Doc. No. 89.) On August 23, 2010, Defendant Lengel also filed a Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Second Amended Complaint (Doc. No. 90). On October 22, 2010, Plaintiff filed a Response in Opposition to both Motions to Dismiss (Doc. No. 95), in which Plaintiff stated that he was no longer pursuing the claim against the County of Montgomery or against the Defendants in their official capacity. (Doc. No. 95 at 10.)

On February 16, 2010, the Court heard oral argument on Defendant Lengel's Motion to Dismiss. Because Plaintiff withdrew his claim against the County of Montgomery and against Defendants Slatowski and O'Malley in their official capacity, there was no cause for oral argument on their respective Motions. On February 17, 2011, the Court issued an Order granting the Motion to Dismiss the Complaint as against the County of Montgomery and Defendants Slatowski and O'Malley in their official capacity and granting leave to Plaintiff to file a Third Amended Complaint. (Doc. No. 101.) On February 22, 2011, Plaintiff filed a Third Amended Complaint (the "Complaint") (Doc. No. 102). On February 25, 2011, Defendant Lengel filed a Motion to Dismiss the Third Amended Complaint (Doc. No. 104) and Plaintiff filed a Supplemental Response in Opposition to Defendant Lengel's Motion to Dismiss (Doc. No. 103).

III. SUMMARY OF RELEVANT FACTS*fn2

In 2007, Kevin Young was incarcerated in the Montgomery County Correctional Facility in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania (the "MCC").*fn3 (Doc. No. 90 at 3.) In October 2007, Plaintiff experienced what he described in the Complaint as "severe itching on his body, accompanied by red bumps and painful skin irritation." (Doc. No. 102 ¶ 9.) Plaintiff notified Defendant Slatowski and he was taken to the MCC's medical department. (Id. ¶ 10.) There, Defendant Lengel examined Plaintiff, "observed [Plaintiff's] symptoms," and made a decision not to provide any medical care at that time. (Id. ¶ 11.) Defendant Lengel told Plaintiff that he "complained too much." (Id.) By October 17, 2007, Plaintiff was still experiencing severe itching. (Id. ¶ 13.) He notified Defendant O'Malley and was again taken to the medical department. (Id.) Young was eventually prescribed medication for his skin condition, which he alleges to have been a scabies infection. Plaintiff's condition was cured by December 10, 2007. (Id. ¶ 19.) Plaintiff alleges that he has permanent scarring on his body as a result of the scabies infection. (Id.)

IV. LEGAL STANDARD

The motion to dismiss standard under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) has been the subject of recent examination, culminating with the Supreme Court's Opinion in Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S. Ct. 1937 (2009). After Iqbal it is clear that "[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice" to defeat a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss. Id. at 1949; see also Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544 (2007). Applying the principles of Iqbal and Twombly, the Third Circuit in Santiago v. Warminster Twp., 629 F.3d 121 (3d Cir. 2010) set forth a three-part analysis that a district court in this Circuit must conduct in evaluating whether allegations in a complaint survive a 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss. 629 F.3d at 130; see also Fowler v. UPMC Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210 (3d Cir. 2009) (applying the principles of Iqbal and articulating the 12(b)(6) analysis as a two-part test).

Under the test set forth in Santiago v. Warminster Twp., "[f]irst, the court must 'take note of the elements a plaintiff must plead to state a claim.' Second, the court should identify allegations that, 'because they are no more than conclusions, are not entitled to the assumption of truth.' Finally, 'where there are well-pleaded factual allegations, a court should assume their veracity and then determine whether they plausibly give rise to an entitlement for relief.'" Santiago, 629 F.3d at 130 (quoting Iqbal, 129 S. Ct. at 1947-50).

Under Iqbal, a complaint must do more than allege a plaintiff's entitlement to relief, it must "show" such an entitlement with its facts. Fowler, 578 F.3d at 210-11 (citing Phillips v. County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 234-35 (3d Cir. 2008)). "Where the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to infer more than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has alleged -- but it has not 'shown' -- 'that the pleader is entitled to relief.'" Iqbal, 129 S. Ct. at 1950. The "plausibility" determination set forth in Iqbal and ...


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