Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Harvey v. Shoupe

United States District Court, W.D. Pennsylvania

June 11, 2018

NORMAN F. HARVEY, Plaintiff,
v.
WILLIAM SHOUPE, Defendant.

          David Stewart Cercone Judge.

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          MAUREEN P. KELLY CHIEF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         I. RECOMMENDATION

         Plaintiff Norman F. Harvey is an inmate currently serving a term of confinement at the Trumbell Correctional Camp in Leavittsburg, Ohio. Proceeding pro se, Plaintiff has filed his Amended Complaint, ECF No. 45, alleging that Defendant William Shouppe, [1] Warden of the Beaver County Jail, (“Warden Shouppe”), violated his rights under the First, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. In particular, Plaintiff alleges claims arising from the conditions of his confinement while awaiting trial for crimes committed during Plaintiff's previously imposed supervised release on parole.

         Pending before the Court is Warden Shouppe's Motion to Dismiss for failure to state a claim. ECF No. 47. For the following reasons, it is respectfully recommended that the Motion to Dismiss be granted, and that Plaintiff's Amended Complaint, ECF No. 45, be dismissed with prejudice.

         II. REPORT

         As indicated in the Report and Recommendation dismissing Plaintiff's initial Complaint, ECF No. 39, Plaintiff's claims arise out of the conditions of his confinement in the Beaver County Jail (the “Jail”). At the time of the events giving rise to his claims, Plaintiff was detained in the Jail pending trial or transfer to stand trial for several crimes allegedly committed while released on parole from a prior conviction in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Plaintiff's Amended Complaint omits this critical detail regarding his parolee status, upon which all of his pending claims are assessed.[2] See generally ECF No. 45. Plaintiff's status is particularly relevant as Plaintiff alleges the violation of his constitutional rights arising out of the deprivation of showers, recreation, telephone and law library access during a sixteen-day period when Plaintiff remained confined in the Jail's booking area. Plaintiff also complains of the lack of access to a computer and mobile law library for four weeks while he was confined in the Jail's Special Needs Unit.

         This Court previously dismissed Plaintiff's claims against Warden Shouppe, citing: (1) Plaintiff's failure to allege facts connecting Warden Shouppe to any alleged constitutional deprivation arising out of the conditions of his confinement; and (2) Plaintiff's failure to allege facts establishing that his confinement subjected him to the deprivation of “the minimal civilized measure of life's necessities” so as to give rise to an Eighth Amendment claim. ECF No. 39 at 12-14, ECF No. 43. The Court's dismissal was without prejudice, to permit Plaintiff an opportunity to correct the noted pleading deficiencies as to his Eighth Amendment claim.

         Upon review of Plaintiff's Amended Complaint, it is evident that Plaintiff now alleges facts connecting Warden Shouppe to Plaintiff's confinement in the Jail's holding area, as well as in the Special Needs Unit. However, as more fully explained below, Plaintiff has not alleged facts establishing the denial of basic human needs sufficient to give rise to an Eighth Amendment claim. Further, to the extent Plaintiff attempts to plead a First Amendment access to court claim arising out of the alleged denial of access to the Jail's mobile law library, Plaintiff has not alleged facts sufficient to give rise to a cognizable constitutional claim.

         B. STANDARD OF REVIEW

         1. Motion to Dismiss

         In assessing the sufficiency of the complaint pursuant to a motion to dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), the Court must accept as true all material allegations in the complaint and all reasonable factual inferences must be viewed in the light most favorable to the plaintiff. Odd Malone, 538 F.3d 202, 205 (3d Cir. 2008). While a complaint does not need detailed factual allegations to survive the motion to dismiss, a complaint must provide more than labels and conclusions. Bell Atlantic Corp. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). A “formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do.” Id. (citing Papasan Allain, 478 U.S. 265, 286 (1986)). “Factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level” and sufficient “to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555, 570.

         “The plausibility standard is not akin to a ‘probability requirement,' but it asks for more than a sheer possibility that a defendant has acted unlawfully.... Where a complaint pleads facts that are ‘merely consistent with' a defendant's liability, it ‘stops short of the line between possibility and plausibility of ‘entitlement to relief.'” Ashcroft Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 557).

         In other words, at the motion to dismiss stage, a plaintiff is required to make “‘a showing' rather than a blanket assertion of an entitlement to relief.” Phillips County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 232 (3d Cir. 2008). “This ‘does not impose a probability requirement at the pleading stage,' but instead ‘simply calls for enough facts to raise a reasonable expectation that ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.