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.

Wright v. United States

United States District Court, D. Montana, Billings Division

April 8, 2019

KRISTOFER MIKAL WRIGHT, Plaintiff,
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER AND FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

          TIMOTHY J. CAVAN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         This matter comes before the Court on Plaintiff Kristofer Wright's Amended Complaint alleging a denial of medical care while incarcerated as a federal pretrial detainee at the Yellowstone County Detention Facility (“YCDF”) and Crossroads Correctional Center in 2014 and 2015. (Doc. 11.)

         The Court has considered whether Mr. Wright's Amended Complaint is frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim, or seeks solely monetary relief from a defendant who is immune. See 28 U.S.C. §1915A(b). It has also considered whether Mr. Wright has a reasonable opportunity to prevail on the merits. See 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(g). Dismissal is not appropriate at this time. Defendants Linder, Bofto, Munter, Baisch, Owens, Griffin, Vanessa, Scott, Carrusso, and Runs Above will be required to respond to the Amended Complaint. See 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(g)(2) (while Defendants may occasionally be permitted to “waive the right to reply to any action brought by a prisoner confined in any jail, prison, or other correctional facility under section 1983, ” once the Court has conducted its sua sponte screening pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2) and § 1915A(b), and thus, has made a preliminary determination based on the face on the pleading alone that plaintiff has a “reasonable opportunity to prevail on the merits, ” Defendant is required to respond).

         Mr. Wright has failed to raise any allegations in his Amended Complaint against Defendants Bennion, Ostlund, Driscoll, Pitman, and Twito and they should be dismissed. Additionally, the Defendants named in the original complaint who were not named in the Amended Complaint: the United States of America, the Department of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, County of Yellowstone Correctional Center, and Community Corrections of America should also be dismissed.

         Finally, Mr. Wright has named two medical providers at Crossroads Correctional Center as Defendants: Dr. Joseph Berdecia and Nurse Slusser. As discussed in the Court's March 7, 2018 Order, the Court assumes Mr. Wright is referring to his incarceration at Crossroads Correctional Center in Shelby, Montana where he was presumably held under an agreement with the United States Marshals. (Doc. 6 at 13-14.) Mr. Wright has named Dr. Berdecia and Nurse Slusser as employees of Crossroads. (Amended Complaint, Doc. 11 at 7.) Even though the Crossroads is a private entity, Mr. Wright was in federal custody while incarcerated at Crossroads, therefore Crossroads and employees thereof are considered federal actors rather than state actors for purposes of this case. Pollard v. GEO Group, Inc., 607 F.3d 583, 588-89 (9th Cir. 2010), rev'd on other grounds sub nom. Minneci v. Pollard, 565 U.S. 118 (2012); see also Lugar v. Edmondson Oil Co., Inc., 457 U.S. 922, 940-41 (1982); Florer v. Congregation Pidyon Shevuyim, N.A., 639 F.3d 916, 922 (9th Cir. 2011).

         Normally an action for constitutional violations committed by federal actors can be brought under Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971). The United States Supreme Court, however, has made clear that a prisoner cannot assert a Bivens claim for damages against employees of private entities. See Karboau v. Clark, 577 Fed. App'x 678, 679 (9th Cir. 2014), citing Minneci v. Pollard, 565 U.S. 118, 131 (2012) (federal inmate has no Bivens claims against private employees working at a privately operated federal prison for denial of medical care or similar conduct). Mr. Wright's remedy against these medical providers would be to pursue an action in state court for medical malpractice or other torts. Dr. Berdecia and Nurse Slusser should also be dismissed.

         Accordingly, the Court issues the following:

         ORDER

         1. Pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(d), the Court will request Defendants Linder, Bofto, Munter, Baisch, Owens, Griffin, Vanessa, Scott, Carrusso, and Runs Above to waive service of summons of Mr. Wright's Amended Complaint by executing, or having counsel execute, the Waiver of Service of Summons.[1] The Waivers must be returned to the Court within thirty (30) days of the entry date of this Order as reflected on the Notice of Electronic Filing. If these Defendants choose to return the Waiver of Service of Summons, their answer or appropriate motion will be due within 60 days of the entry date of this Order as reflected on the Notice of Electronic Filing, pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(a)(1)(B). See also 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(g)(2).

         2. The Clerk of Court shall forward the documents listed below to Defendants Linder, Bofto, Munter, Baisch, Owens, Griffin, Vanessa, and Scott at the Yellowstone County Detention Facility, P.O. Box 35017, 2323 2nd Avenue North, Billings, MT 59107; to Defendant Carrusso at Riverstone Health Clinic, 123 South 27th Street, Billings, MT 59101, and to Defendant Runs Above at Dawson County Correctional Facility, 440 Colorado Blvd., Glendive, Montana 59330:

* Amended Complaint (Doc. 11);
* this Order;
* a Notice of Lawsuit & Request to Waive Service of ...

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.