United States District Court, W.D. Michigan, Southern Division
ORDER PARTIALLY DISMISSING COMPLAINT AND TRANSFERRING
THE CASE TO THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE WESTERN
DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN
STEPHEN J. MURPHY, III UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
24, 2019, Plaintiff Kevin Darnell Ragland filed a pro se
civil rights complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. ECF
1. Ragland is a state prisoner currently confined at the
Lakeland Correctional Facility (“LCF”) in
Coldwater, Michigan. The court granted him leave to proceed
without prepayment of the filing fee. See 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(a). In his complaint, Ragland raises claims
concerning his medical treatment for back pain following
spinal surgery, a potential heart condition, and Hepatitis C
and the handling of his grievances regarding the same.
Ragland named Corizon Medical Providers, Inc., LCF medical
provider Olette, LCF nurse practitioner Jane Williams, the
LCF ACMO coordinator, the Michigan Department of Corrections
(“MDOC”) director, Saginaw Correctional Facility
Nurse Patricia Lamb, and Jackson medical provider Jamsen as
the defendants in this action. He seeks monetary damages and
injunctive relief. For the reasons stated herein, the Court
will partially dismiss the complaint and transfer this case
to the United States District Court for the Western District
the Prison Litigation Reform Act (“PLRA”), the
Court is required to sua sponte dismiss an in forma pauperis
complaint before service on a defendant if it determines that
the action is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim
upon which relief can be granted, or seeks monetary relief
against a defendant who is immune from such relief.
See 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(c); 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2)(B). The Court is similarly required to dismiss a
complaint seeking redress against government entities,
officers, and employees when it determines the case 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. See 28
U.S.C. § 1915A. A complaint is frivolous if it lacks an
arguable basis either in law or in fact. See Denton v.
Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 31 (1992); Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). A pro se complaint
should be liberally construed and held to a “less
stringent standard” than one drafted by an attorney.
Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972). Even a
pro se complaint, however, must plead facts sufficient to
show a legal wrong has been committed for which the plaintiff
may be granted relief.
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must
allege that (1) he or she was deprived of a right, privilege,
or immunity secured by the federal Constitution or laws of
the United States, and (2) the deprivation was caused by a
person acting under color of state law. See Flagg Bros.
v. Brooks, 436 U.S. 149, 155-57 (1978); Brock v.
McWherter, 94 F.3d 242, 244 (6th Cir. 1996).
Additionally, a plaintiff must allege facts indicating that
the deprivation of his or her rights was intentional.
Davidson v. Cannon, 474 U.S. 344, 348 (1986);
Daniels v. Williams, 474 U.S. 327, 333-36 (1986).
named Saginaw Correctional Facility Nurse Patricia Lamb and
Jackson medical provider Jamsen as two of the defendants in
this action. Ragland, however, failed to make any factual
allegations against those two defendants in the body of his
complaint, and he did not allege facts showing that those
defendants personally engaged in unconstitutional conduct. It
is well-settled that a civil rights plaintiff must allege the
personal involvement of a defendant to state a claim under
§ 1983 and that liability cannot be based upon a theory
of respondeat superior or vicarious liability. See Monell
v. Department of Social Svs., 436 U.S. 658, 691-92
(1978); Turner v. City of Taylor, 412 F.3d 629, 643
(6th Cir. 2005) (plaintiff must allege facts showing that
defendant participated, condoned, encouraged, or knowingly
acquiesced in alleged misconduct to establish liability).
Moreover, conclusory allegations are insufficient to state a
civil rights claim under § 1983. See Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009); Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-57 (2007); Crawford-El v.
Britton, 523 U.S. 574, 588 (1998). Ragland failed to
state a claim against defendants Lamb and Jamsen in his
complaint. His complaint as to those defendants must
therefore be dismissed.
remaining defendants (with the exception of Corizon Medical
Providers, Inc. for whom no address is provided) reside in
Coldwater, Michigan and Lansing, Michigan and most of the
actions giving rise to the remaining claims in the complaint
appear to have occurred there as well. Venue for a civil
action brought in federal court is governed by 28 U.S.C.
§ 1391. Section 1391(b) provides:
in general. A civil action may be brought in -
(1) a judicial district in which any defendant resides, if
all defendants are residents of the State in which the
district is located;
(2) a judicial district in which a substantial part of the
events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred, or a
substantial part of property that is the subject of the
action is situated; or
(3) if there is no district in which an action may otherwise
be brought as provided in this section, any judicial district
in which any defendant is subject to the court's personal
jurisdiction with respect to such action.
28 U.S.C. § 1391(b). Public officials "reside"
in the county where they perform their official duties.
O'Neill v. Battisti, 472 F.2d 789, 791 (6th Cir.
venue is improper, a district court may either dismiss the
case or, in the interests of justice, transfer the case to a
district or division where it could have been brought. 28
U.S.C. § 1406(a). Additionally, even when venue is
proper, a district court may transfer a civil action to any
other district where it might have been brought for the
convenience of the parties and witnesses and in the interest
of justice. 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a). A court may sua sponte
transfer a case based upon venue. Carver v. Knox
County, Tenn., 887 F.2d 1287, 1291 (6th Cir. 1989);
see also Cosmichrome, Inc. v. Spectra Chrome, Inc.
LLC, 504 Fed.Appx. 468, 472 (6th Cir. 2012).
resides in Coldwater, Michigan, the remaining defendants
(with the exception of Corizon Medical Providers, Inc.)
reside in Coldwater, Michigan and Lansing, Michigan, and most
of the actions giving rise to the remaining claims in the
complaint appear to have occurred there. Coldwater, Michigan
lies in Branch County and Lansing, Michigan lies in Ingham
County, both of which are located in the Southern Division of
the Western District of Michigan. See 28 U.S.C.
§ 102(b)(1). Venue for purposes of the remaining
complaint is ...