United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania
FRITZ G. DeJOIE, Plaintiff,
LOUIS FOLINO, et al., Defendants.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
LISA PUPO LENIHAN, Magistrate Judge.
For the following reasons, it is respectfully recommended that Defendants' Motion to Dismiss (ECF No. 23) be granted as to Plaintiff's claim against Folino, Winfield and Palya; denied as to Plaintiff's claim against Welda and Tennant; and denied as moot as to the request to dismiss any Fourteenth Amendment claim. It is further recommended that Plaintiff be allowed to amend his complaint to attempt to state a claim against Defendants Folino, Winfield and Palya.
Plaintiff Fritz DeJoie is an inmate in the custody of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections and is currently confined at SCI-Graterford. He filed this lawsuit against SCI-Greene Superintendent Louis Folino, Deputy Superintendent Laranda Winfield, Unit Manager Paul Palya and C.O.s Welda and Tennant. His Complaint alleges that on May 2, 2013, while housed in Security Threat Group Management Unit ("STGMU"), a Level 5 maximum security program for prisoners considered to be high security risks, he was viciously attacked by another inmate. Plaintiff asserts Eighth Amendment claims for failure to intervene, deliberate indifference, and failure to train and supervise. All Defendants have joined in the Motion to Dismiss.
A. Plaintiff's Allegations
Plaintiff alleges that on May 2, 2013, he and another prisoner from the STGMU, Inmate Frescatore, were taken from their cells to play a game of cards in the dayroom. They were not searched as required by policy and were shackled to a table. Frescatore attacked Plaintiff with a sharp weapon and cut his face and neck. ECF No. 7-1 at ¶¶ 23-27. Corrections Officer Welda did not intervene, but rather ran away from the scene. Id. at ¶ 28. Corrections Officer Tennant separated the two inmates. Id. at ¶ 29. Plaintiff alleges that Defendants Welda and Tennant failed in their duties by not searching the inmates before taking them from their cells, id. at ¶ 13, and by not having a panic button or spray device as required by DOC policy, Id. at ¶¶ 32, 33. Plaintiff further alleges that Defendants Folino, Winfield and Palya failed to enforce DOC policies to ensure inmate safety and failing to adequately train staff. Id. at ¶ 40. He was then brought to medical. Id. at ¶¶ 16, 19.
B. Standard of Review
Recently, the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit summarized the standard to be applied in deciding motions to dismiss filed pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6):
Under the "notice pleading" standard embodied in Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, a plaintiff must come forward with "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." As explicated in Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009), a claimant must state a "plausible" claim for relief, and "[a] claim has facial plausibility when the pleaded factual content allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged." Although "[f]actual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level, " Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007), a plaintiff "need only put forth allegations that raise a reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence of the necessary element." Fowler, 578 F.3d at 213 (quotation marks and citations omitted); see also Covington v. Int'l Ass'n of Approved Basketball Officials, 710 F.3d 114, 117-18 (3d Cir.2013).
Thompson v. Real Estate Mortg. Network, 748 F.3d 142, 147 (3d Cir. 2014).
1. Failure to State a Claim as to Folino, Winfield and Palya
Defendants Folino, Winfield and Palya move to dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint for failure to show that they had sufficient personal involvement in the alleged wrongdoing. Plaintiff, however, seeks to hold these ...