United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
LORAIN OBOMANU, as Personal Representative of the Estate of SABRIE L. ALEXANDER, Deceased, Plaintiff,
MILLICENT WARREN, et al., Defendants.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER DENYING DEFENDANTS' MOTION
COHN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
a prisoner civil rights case involving a death. Plaintiff
Lorain Obomanu, as personal representative of the estate of
Sabrie L. Alexander, is suing eleven (11) defendants Claire
Pei, Robert Lacy, Mohammad Irfan, Mary Closser, Patricia
Robinson, Chaviers, Audley Mamby, Angel Izua, Cartessa Brown,
Bernard Goss, and Denise Bertoni. Plaintiff asserts a federal
claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for deliberate indifference
to serious medical needs and an Eighth Amendment claim. In
broad terms, plaintiff says that defendants failed to provide
proper care for Alexander's medical conditions which
ultimately resulted in her death.
the second lawsuit filed by plaintiff regarding
Alexander's death. In the earlier case, plaintiff has
sued thirty-seven individuals, two health services companies,
and ten unnamed defendants, for a total of forty-one (41)
defendants. Obomanu v. Warren, et al, 17-11435.
Defendants Corizon, Valitas and Claire Pei, Aryan Taymour,
Robert Lacy, Pu Qin, and Mohammad Azimi filed a motion to
dismiss. See Doc. 45 in No. 17-11435. Mohammad Irfan
and Mary Closser joined in the motion. The Court granted in
part and denied in part the motion. Specifically, the Court
1. Plaintiff's gross negligence claims (Counts VI, VII,
VIII) were DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE as the Court declined
to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over them.
2. Count IV [alleging 8th Amendment violation] was
DISMISSED as duplicative of Counts I, II, and III.
3. Pei, Lacy, Irfan, and Closser were DISMISSED for failure
to state a claim. See Doc. 66 in No. 17-11435.
noted above, plaintiff has named Pei, Lacy, Irfan, and
Closser as defendants in the new case.
Court has consolidated the two cases. See Doc. 44.
the Court is Pei, Lacy, and new defendant Mamby's motion
to dismiss. (Doc. 32). Closser and Irfan have joined in the
motion. (Doc. 35). Defendants contend that plaintiff's
claims against them in the new case are barred by res
judicata and still fail to state a claim. Following a hearing
on the motion, the Court directed plaintiff to file a
consolidated amended complaint under the lead case, No.
17-11435. Plaintiff has done so. (Doc. 116). The Court also
directed plaintiff to complete a chart outlining the
following (1) name of defendant, (2) position of defendant,
(3) time period of defendant's involvement, and (4) role
of defendant in care/custody of decedent. Plaintiff lodged
the chart with the Court. The matter is now ready for
reasons that follow, the motion will be DENIED. As will be
explained, the complaint contains sufficient allegations of
wrongdoing against each defendant to survive dismissal.
Discovery may reveal otherwise.
case involves the death of Alexander, a 27 year old woman,
while she confined at the Women's Huron Valley
Correctional Center. Alexander was incarcerated from April
17, 2014 until November 17, 2014, the date of her death.
Alexander suffered from a variety of medical conditions
including a seizure disorder and mental health issues
(bi-polar, anxiety, borderline personality). Alexander also
had a bladder condition and asthma. Plaintiff alleges that
during Alexander's seven month period of incarceration,
her pleas for medical attention were ignored and she was
punished for seeking attention by being placed in segregation
and solitary confinement. While plaintiff alleges several
instances of improper medical care, the most significant
allegations pertain to the treatment of Alexander's
seizures. The complaint alleges that Alexander was not given
her seizure medication for the first eight days she was in
custody and missed dosages of the medication over 80 times
12(b)(6) motion tests the sufficiency of a plaintiff's
pleading. The Rule requires that a complaint "contain
something more . . . than . . . a statement of facts that
merely creates a suspicion [of] a legally cognizable right of
action." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544 (2007) (internal citation omitted). A
"plaintiff's obligation to provide the
'grounds' of his 'entitlement to relief'
requires more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic
recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not
do." Id. "[T]hat a court must accept as
true all of the allegations contained in a complaint is
inapplicable to legal conclusions. Threadbare recitals of all
the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere
conclusory statements do not suffice." Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662; 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009). The
court is "not bound to accept as true a legal conclusion
couched as a factual allegation."
deciding a motion to dismiss pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P.
12(b)(6), th[e] Court may only consider 'the facts
alleged in the pleadings, documents attached as exhibits or
incorporated by reference in the pleadings, and matters of
which the [Court] may take judicial notice.'"
Murray v. Geithner, 624 F.Supp.2d 667, 671 (E.D.
Mich. 2009) (citing 2 James Wm. Moore et al., Moore's
Federal Practice 12.342 (3d ed. 2000)); see also Weiner
v. Klais & Co., 108 F.3d 86, 89 (6th Cir. 1997)
(holding that a document incorporated by reference in a
complaint can be introduced by a defendant if it is not
attached by plaintiff).
contend that they should be dismissed from this case because
the Court's dismissal order in the earlier case operates
as res judicata. Specifically, defendants say that claim
preclusion prohibits plaintiff's allegations against
Lacy, Pei, Irfan, and Closser. Similarly, defendants say
issue preclusion prohibits plaintiff's allegations
against new defendant, Mamby.
preclusion . . . refers to [the] effect of a prior judgment
in foreclosing a subsequent claim that has never been
litigated, because of a determination that it should have
been advanced in an earlier action. Issue preclusion, on the
other hand, refers to the foreclosure of an issue previously
litigated. Mitchell v. Chapman, 343 F.3d 811, 818