United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania
se plaintiff, Charles Talbert, filed this action against
the City of Philadelphia in which he claims he was assaulted
by two Philadelphia police officers. The City filed a motion
to dismiss plaintiffs amended complaint. I will grant the
motion to dismiss.
28, 2014, the plaintiff was at the corner of 11th
and Cambridge Street in Philadelphia. (Doc. No. 36 ¶ 6).
This location was one block away from plaintiffs
ex-girlfriend's house. (Id ¶ 7). At that
time, plaintiffs ex-girlfriend had a restraining order
against plaintiff. (Id.).
plaintiff was standing at the street corner, Officer Ortiz
drove up to plaintiff. (Id.). Plaintiff claims he
“waved [Officer Ortiz] down to fully explain to him his
purpose for waiting there due to his ex-girlfriend having a
restraining order on him who lived only a block away.”
(Id.). While plaintiff was talking with Officer
Ortiz, another Philadelphia police officer, Officer McFadden,
arrived at the scene. (Id. ¶ 8).
claims Officer McFadden approached him from behind, grabbed
his cane, and handcuffed plaintiff. (Id. ¶ 9).
Plaintiff also claims Officer McFadden punched him in the jaw
and Officer Ortiz joined in and hit him. (Id.
¶¶ 9-10). Plaintiff yelled “police
brutality” and people came out from their houses to see
what was happening. (Id. ¶ 11).
ambulance arrived on the scene and transported plaintiff to
Saint Joseph's Hospital where he was admitted and stayed
for several days. (Id. ¶ 12). Plaintiff had
blood in his colostomy bag. (Id.).
motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure for failure to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted examines the legal sufficiency of the
complaint. Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 45-46
(1957). The factual allegations must be sufficient to make
the claim for relief more than just speculative. Bell
Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). In
determining whether to grant a motion to dismiss, a federal
court must construe the complaint liberally, accept all
factual allegations in the complaint as true, and draw all
reasonable inferences in favor of the plaintiff.
Id.; see also D.P. Enters. v. Bucks
County Cmty. Coll., 725 F.2d 943, 944 (3d Cir.1984).
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure do not require a plaintiff
to plead in detail all of the facts upon which she bases her
claim. Conley, 355 U.S. at 47. Rather, the Rules
require a “short and plain statement” of the
claim that will give the defendant fair notice of the
plaintiff's claim and the grounds upon which it rests.
Id. The “complaint must allege facts
suggestive of [the proscribed] conduct.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 564. Neither “bald
assertions” nor “vague and conclusory
allegations” are accepted as true. See
Morse v. Lower Merion School Dist., 132 F.3d 902,
906 (3d Cir.1997); Sterling v. Southeastern Pennsylvania
Transp. Auth., 897 F.Supp. 893 (E.D. Pa. 1995). The
claim must contain enough factual matters to suggest the
required elements of the claim or to “raise a
reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence
of” those elements. Phillips v. County of
Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 234 (3d Cir. 2008) (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556).
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009), the Supreme
Court defined a two-pronged approach to a court's review
of a motion to dismiss. “First, the tenet that a court
must accept as true all of the allegations contained in a
complaint is inapplicable to legal conclusions. Threadbare
recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by
mere conclusory statements, do not suffice.”
Id. at 678. Thus, while “Rule 8 marks a
notable and generous departure from the hyper-technical,
code-pleading regime of a prior era . . . it does not unlock
the doors of discovery for a plaintiff armed with nothing
more than conclusions.” Id. at 678-79.
“may dismiss a complaint only if it is clear that no
relief could be granted under any set of facts that could be
proved consistent with the allegations.” Brown v.
Card Service Ctr., 464 F.3d 450, 456 (3d Cir. 2006)
(quoting Hishon v. King & Spalding, 467 U.S. 69,
73 (1984)). Courts construe a plaintiff's allegations
liberally when he or she is proceeding pro se.
Higgs v. Att'y Gen., 655 F.3d 333, 339 (3d Cir.