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Wright v. Busby

United States District Court, D. Montana, Great Falls Division

January 22, 2018

TIMOTHY WRIGHT, Plaintiff,
v.
A. BUSBY, DUANE STEWART, DOUG FENDER, and MEDICAL STAFF, Defendants.

          ORDER AND FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

          John Johnston United States Magistrate Judge.

         Plaintiff Timothy Wright filed an Amended pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging Defendants failed to protect him and denied him proper medical care. In a prior Order, the Court determined that Mr. Wright's original Complaint failed to state a claim upon which relief may be granted and was subject to dismissal. Mr. Wright has now filed an amended complaint in which he requests the appointment of counsel. (Doc. 9.) Mr. Wright failed to correct the deficiencies in his Complaint identified in the Court's prior Order. As such, this matter should be dismissed. In light of the recommendation to dismiss this case, the request for the appointment of counsel will be denied.

         I. STATEMENT OF THE CASE

         A. Parties

         Mr. Wright is a state prisoner proceeding without counsel. He is proceeding in forma pauperis. Mr. Wright is currently incarcerated at Montana State Prison. All claims alleged in his Complaint arose while he was incarcerated at Crossroads Correctional Center in Shelby, Montana.

         Mr. Wright names the same Defendants as named in his original Complaint: Security Chief A. Busby, Chief of Unit Management Duane Stewart, Warden Doug Fender, and all medical staff in 2015. (Amended Complaint, Doc. 9 at 3-5.)

         B. Allegations

         Mr. Wright alleges his rights under the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution have been violated in that he has been subjected to cruel and unusual punishment and denied equal protection. (Amended Complaint, Doc. 9-1.)

         Factually, he alleges he was in a physical relationship with a female staff member at Crossroads. When another inmate learned of the relationship he tried to blackmail the female staff member. The female staff member reported the blackmail and was fired. The inmate who tried to commit blackmail received an infraction report for trying to engage in a physical relationship with a staff member and was taken to lockdown. Mr. Wright, however, was not given an infraction. He was sent back to his housing unit and was not placed on separation status. On March 18, 2015, he was assaulted by one individual and was assaulted by two individuals on March 19, 2015. He seeks to hold Defendants Fender, Busby, and Stewart responsible for these assaults. (Amended Complaint, Doc. 9-1 at 2-3.)

         Mr. Wright was placed in locked housing on March 20, 2015 when he continued to complain of problems from the assault. He was transported to the hospital on March 24, 2015. (Amended Complaint, Doc. 9-1 at 2-3.)

         II. SCREENING

         Mr. Wright is a prisoner proceeding in forma pauperis so the Court must review his Amended Complaint under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915, 1915A. Sections 1915A(b) and 1915(e)(2)(B) require the Court to dismiss a complaint filed in forma pauperis and/or by a prisoner against a governmental defendant before it is served if it is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune. from such relief.

         A. Failure to Protect

         As set forth in the Court's prior Order, “[p]rison officials have a duty to take reasonable steps to protect inmates from physical abuse.” Hoptowit v. Ray, 682 F.2d 1237, 1250-51 (9th Cir. 1982); see also Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 833 (1994); Robinson v. Prunty, 249 F.3d 862, 866 (9th Cir. 2001). To establish a violation of this duty, the prisoner must establish that prison officials were “deliberately indifferent” to serious threats his safety. See Farmer, 511 U.S. at 834. The prisoner must show that “the official [knew] of and disregard[ed] an excessive risk to inmate . . . safety; the official must both be aware of facts from which the inference could be drawn that a substantial risk of serious harm exists, and ...


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