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Price v. Pennsylvania Department of Corrections

United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania

May 15, 2015

CURTIS PRICE, Plaintiff,
v.
PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, et al., Defendants.

ORDER

LISA PUPO LENIHAN, Magistrate Judge.

Plaintiff, Curtis Price, initiated this action by submitting for filing a Motion for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis, which was received by the Court on October 23, 2014. That Motion was denied as deficient but later granted after Plaintiff submitted the necessary account information. His Complaint was docketed on November 13, 2014.

Plaintiff's Complaint is rather sparse and consists only of one paragraph that incorporates twenty pages worth of grievances. The Court can gleam only that Plaintiff fell out of bed from the top bunk on September 25, 2012 as a result of the DOC not putting guardrails on the open side of the bed.[1] However, the Complaint lacks any reference to specific individuals and their alleged involvement in the complained of wrongdoing. For this reason, Plaintiff is directed to file an amended complaint that is in compliance with the following instructions.

Instructions for Filing an Amended Complaint

A. Caption and Heading

Plaintiff must place his full name at the top of the amended complaint. Plaintiff must also add the names of each defendant. Plaintiff must name as defendants only those persons who are responsible for the alleged constitutional violation(s).[2]

B. Jurisdiction

Plaintiff must inform the Court why the case should be heard in federal court rather than state court or some other forum. If Plaintiff's action is generally one for a violation of civil rights, 42 U.S.C. § 1983 will normally be the basis for the claim. In order for Plaintiff's action to be heard in federal court under Section 1983, he must be able to show that the defendant(s), at the time of the claims alleged in the amended complaint, were acting under the authority or color of state law.

C. Parties

As the person initiating the lawsuit, Plaintiff must identify himself as such. Also, for each defendant named in the amended complaint, Plaintiff should list their current address and description of their employment. In addition, Plaintiff should explain briefly how or in what capacity each defendant acted under authority given to them by state or local government.

D. Statement of Claim

Plaintiff must state what rights under the Constitution, laws, or treaties of the United States have been violated. It is improper for Plaintiff to merely list constitutional rights or federal rights. Plaintiff must provide a description of how the defendant(s) violated his rights.

E. Statement of Facts

Plaintiff must provide specific details of precisely how his civil rights were allegedly violated. Plaintiff should note that, in civil rights cases, more than conclusory and vague allegations are required to state a cause of action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff should clearly describe how each named defendant is involved in the alleged constitution violation(s). This description should include references to relevant dates, times, and locations. It should explain to the Court what happened by specifically describing each defendant's behavior or action and how that behavior or action - or lack of action - resulted in the alleged violations. Plaintiff should not include legal argument in his amended complaint. Citations to case law and other statutes are not appropriate in the complaint, but rather may be included in a response to a dispositive ...


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