United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Southern Division
L. Maloney, United States District Judge.
a civil rights action brought by a state prisoner. Under the
Prison Litigation Reform Act, Pub. L. No. 104-134, 110 Stat.
1321 (1996) (PLRA), the Court is required to dismiss any
prisoner action brought under federal law if the complaint is
frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a
defendant immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. §§
1915(e)(2), 1915A. The Court must read Plaintiff's
pro se complaint indulgently, see Haines v.
Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972), and accept
Plaintiff's allegations as true, unless they are clearly
irrational or wholly incredible. Denton v.
Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 33 (1992). Applying these
standards, the Court will dismiss Plaintiff's complaint
for failure to state a claim.
is presently incarcerated with the Michigan Department of
Corrections (MDOC) at the Saginaw County Correctional
Facility (SRF) in Freeland, Michigan. The events about which
he complains occurred while he was detained at the Muskegon
County Jail. Plaintiff sues the Muskegon County Jail,
Muskegon County Detective Keith Stratton, the Muskegon County
Sheriff, and unidentified individuals who work for Muskegon
to the MDOC's records,  a Muskegon County jury found
Plaintiff guilty of second-degree murder and possession of a
firearm during the commission of a felony. In 2018, the state
court sentenced him to a prison term of 30 to 60 years.
Plaintiff alleges that on March 9, 2017, he was detained at
the Muskegon County Jail, facing the charges for which he is
now serving a prison sentence. At the jail, Detective
Stratton interrogated Plaintiff about the charged offenses.
Plaintiff apparently made incriminating statements to
Stratton, but Plaintiff contends that Stratton violated his
constitutional rights in several ways.
Plaintiff asserts that he did not understand his rights under
Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966), and did not
fully understand what was happening during the interrogation
because he was “extremely high” and not
“[coherent].” (Compl., ECF No. 1, PageID.7.)
Plaintiff contends that his criminal defense attorney raised
these issues in a motion to the state court, ostensibly in an
effort to suppress Plaintiff's statements from the
interrogation, but the state court denied the motion.
Plaintiff alleges that his appellate attorney has raised
these issues on appeal, as well. That appeal is still
Detective Stratton allegedly touched Plaintiff's leg
“in a way that made Plaintiff feel very
uncomfortable.” (Id.) Plaintiff claims that
Detective Stratton's touch constituted “excessive
force” and an invasion of privacy, in violation of the
following: the Eighth Amendment, the Prison Rape Elimination
Act (PREA), 34 U.S.C. § 30301 et seq.,  and a federal
statute criminalizing sexual activity in federal prisons, 18
U.S.C. § 2243.
contends that Muskegon County is liable for the conduct of
Defendant Stratton because it failed to train and supervise
its employees to prevent them from “nonconsensual[ly]
touching” detainees and thereby depriving them of their
civil rights. (Id., PageID.8.) Plaintiff also claims
that the Muskegon County Sheriff and Detective Stratton
failed to provide a “risk free” environment to
protect Plaintiff from “unreasonable risk of gross
negligence.” (Id.) In addition, these
defendants and unidentified Muskegon County employees failed
to protect Plaintiff from “harm, ” thereby
violating his rights under the Eighth and Fourteenth
Amendments. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges that
Defendants' actions caused him to suffer “personal
injury, phy[s]ical injury, . . . emotional distress, and
relief, Plaintiff seeks a declaration that Defendants
violated his rights under the Constitution and federal law,
an injunction requiring Defendant Stratton to cease all
“unprofessional investigation[s], ” and monetary
damages. (Id., PageID.10.)
Failure to state a claim
complaint may be dismissed for failure to state a claim if it
fails “‘to give the defendant fair notice of what
the . . . claim is and the grounds upon which it
rests.'” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355
U.S. 41, 47 (1957)). While a complaint need not contain
detailed factual allegations, a plaintiff's allegations
must include more than labels and conclusions.
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555; Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (“Threadbare
recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by
mere conclusory statements, do not suffice.”). The
court must determine whether the complaint contains
“enough facts to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at
570. “A claim has facial plausibility when the
plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to
draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the misconduct alleged.” Iqbal, 556 U.S.
at 679. Although the plausibility standard is not equivalent
to a “‘probability requirement,' . . . it
asks for more than a sheer possibility that a defendant has
acted unlawfully.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678
(quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556). “[W]here
the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to infer more
than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has
alleged-but it has not ‘show[n]'-that the pleader
is entitled to relief.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679
(quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2)); see also Hill v.
Lappin, 630 F.3d 468, 470-71 (6th Cir. 2010) (holding
that the Twombly/Iqbal plausibility standard applies
to dismissals of prisoner cases on initial review under 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915A(b)(1) and 1915(e)(2)(B)(i)).
cites the PREA, but that statute does not provide him any
relief. Plaintiff “has no independent cause of action
for any Defendant's failure to comply with the Prison
Rape Elimination Act.” Beeman v. Heyns, No.
1:16-cv-27, 2016 WL 1316771, at *12 n.4 (W.D. Mich. Apr. 5,
2016) (citing Montgomery v. Harper, No.
5:14-CV-P38R, 2014 WL 4104163, at *2 (W.D. Ky. Aug. 19, 2014)
(“Although not addressed in the Sixth Circuit, district
courts have found that the PREA does not create a private
cause of action which can be brought by an individual
plaintiff.”)); see also McCloud v. Prack, 55
F.Supp.3d 478, 482 n.2 (W.D.N.Y. 2014)
(“‘[N]othing in the statute suggests that PREA
intended to establish a private cause of action for
allegations of prison rape, and every court to address the
issue has determined that PREA cannot support such a cause of
action by an inmate.'”) (quoting Amaker v.
Fischer, No. 10-CV-0977, 2014 WL 4772202, at *14
(W.D.N.Y. Sept. 24, 2014) (collecting cases)); Barhite v.
Berghuis, No. 1:14-cv-670, 2014 WL ...