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Smith v. Community Education Centers, Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania

May 10, 2019

JAMAL SMITH
v.
COMMUNITY EDUCATION CENTERS, INC., et al.

          MEMORANDUM RE: MOTION TO DISMISS

          BAYLSON, J.

         Plaintiff Jamal Smith alleges that Defendants Community Education Centers, Inc. (“CEC”), the GEO Group, Inc., and Correctional Officers John Does 1 through 4 violated his civil rights while he was a detainee at a Delaware County correctional facility. (Compl., ECF 1 at ¶¶ 18-24.) Plaintiff's Complaint sets out four claims for relief:

• Count 1: Fourth Amendment - Excessive Force, against Correctional Officers John Does 1 through 4;
• Count II: 42 U.S.C. § 1983 Monell claim against CEC and the GEO Group, Inc.
• Count III: Assault and battery claims against Correctional Officers John Does 1 through 4; and
• Count IV: Negligence claims against CEC and the GEO Group, Inc.

         CEC and the GEO Group, Inc. now move to dismiss the claims against them under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). (Mot., ECF 3.) Plaintiff responds in opposition to CEC, but proposes a stipulation to dismiss without prejudice the claims against the GEO Group, Inc. (Resp. Memo., ECF 7 at 3; Resp. Memo. Ex. B.) Accordingly, the Court will only address the motion as it relates to claims against CEC. For the reasons stated below, CEC's Motion to Dismiss is granted and Plaintiff's claims against CEC are dismissed without prejudice, with leave to amend.

         I. Background

         For the purposes of this motion, the following facts are taken as true from Plaintiff's Complaint. At the time of the incident that sparked this action, Plaintiff was an arrestee and detainee at the George W. Hill Correctional Facility. (Compl. ¶ 17.) Plaintiff alleges that while in custody, he had a seizure and correctional officers handcuffed him to a gurney for transportation to obtain medical treatment. (Compl. ¶ 18.) Plaintiff claims that “[a]s a result of Plaintiff's seizure, his right arm locked into place” and that when the correctional officers attempted to handcuff him to the gurney, his locked arm was “forcibly moved. . . causing a torn labrum and torn rotator cuff in his right arm, and other injuries.” (Compl. ¶¶ 19-20.)

         Plaintiff filed his Complaint on November 30, 2018. (Compl.) Defendants filed their Motion to Dismiss on January 7, 2019, and Plaintiff responded on February 5, 2019. (Mot.; Resp.)

         II. Legal Standard

         In considering a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), “we accept all factual allegations as true [and] construe the complaint in the light most favorable to the plaintiff.” Warren Gen. Hosp. v. Amgen, Inc., 643 F.3d 77, 84 (3d Cir. 2011) (quoting Pinker v. Roche Holdings Ltd., 292 F.3d 361, 374 n. 7 (3d Cir. 2002)). “To survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). The Court in Iqbal, however, explains that while factual allegations must be treated as true, legal conclusions do not. 556 U.S. at 678. “Threadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice.” Id. (citing Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555).

         III. Discussion

         A. ...


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