United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
ALVIN D. FRAZIER, #379628, Plaintiff,
GLEN A. LINSLEY, et al., Defendants.
OPINION AND ORDER DISMISSING THE CIVIL RIGHTS
COMPLAINT AND DENYING THE MOTION FOR APPOINTMENT OF
Gershwin A. Drain United States District Court Judge
a pro se civil rights case brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. Michigan prisoner Alvin D. Frazier
(“Plaintiff”) raises claims arising from his
vision care while confined at the Cotton Correctional
Facility (“JCF”) in 2018. He alleges violations
of his Eighth Amendment, First Amendment, due process, and
equal protection rights. In particular, he complains that he
was not given new glasses despite a change in his vision and
that he was not given tinted glasses/solar shields to protect
his vision. Plaintiff names Dr. Glen A. Linsley, JCF,
Corizon, Nurse Laura P. Davenport, Renyu Xue, Student Dr.
Nathan C. Traxler, Nurse Practitioner Kristin A. Austin,
Nurse Abigail Burk, Nurse Michelle Couling, and JCF
Healthcare Staff/Corizon Healthcare Providers as the
defendants in this action. He sues the defendants in their
official and personal capacities and seeks monetary damages
and other appropriate relief. The Court has granted Plaintiff
leave to proceed without prepayment of the fees for this
action. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1).
the Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1996
(“PLRA”), the Court is required to sua sponte
dismiss an in forma pauperis complaint before service 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 which it finds to be
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 in law or in fact. Denton v.
Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 31 (1992); Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989).
Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a) requires that a complaint set
forth “a short and plain statement of the claim showing
that the pleader is entitled to relief, ” as well as
“a demand for the relief sought.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
8(a)(2), (3). The purpose of this rule is to “give the
defendant fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the
grounds upon which it rests.” Bell Atlantic Corp.
v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (quoting Conley
v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 47 (1957) and Fed.R.Civ.P.
8(a)(2)). While such notice pleading does not require
detailed factual allegations, it does require more than the
bare assertion of legal conclusions. Twombly, 550
U.S. at 555. Rule 8 “demands more than an unadorned,
the defendant-unlawfully-harmed me accusation.”
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).
“A pleading that offers ‘labels and
conclusions' or ‘a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action will not do.'”
Id. (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555).
“Nor does a complaint suffice if it tenders
‘naked assertion[s]' devoid of ‘further
factual enhancement.'” Id. (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 557).
state a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff must
allege that (1) he 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. Flagg Bros. v.
Brooks, 436 U.S. 149, 155-57 (1978); Harris v.
Circleville, 583 F.3d 356, 364 (6th Cir. 2009). A pro se
civil rights complaint is to be construed liberally.
Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520-21 (1972).
this liberal pleading standard, the Court finds that the
civil rights complaint is subject to dismissal. Plaintiff
already filed a civil rights action against the same
defendants for the same alleged constitutional violations,
which was dismissed for failure to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and on the
basis of Eleventh Amendment immunity. See Frazier v.
Lindsey, et al., No. 2:19-CV-10844 (E.D. Mich. April 11,
2019) (Gershwin, J). Plaintiff's current claims were
previously raised and addressed in that prior case and may
not be re-litigated under the doctrine of res
judicata or claim preclusion. See, e.g., Federated
Dep't. Stores v. Moitie, 452 U.S. 394, 398 (1981);
Mitchell v. Chapman, 343 F.3d 811, 819 (6th Cir.
2003); see also Butts v. Wilkinson, 145 F.3d 1330,
1998 WL 152778, *1 (6th Cir. 1998) (unpublished) (upholding
summary dismissal of prisoner civil rights complaint based
upon res judicata doctrine); McWilliams v. State
of Colorado, 121 F.3d 573, 574-75 (10th Cir. 1997)
(repetitious litigation of virtually identical causes of
action may be dismissed under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e) as
frivolous or malicious); Jones v. Warden of Statesville
Corr. Ctr., 918 F.Supp. 1142, 1150 (N.D. Ill. 1995)
(dismissal of prisoner action as frivolous given preclusive
effect against similar claims raised in subsequent
the res judicata or claim preclusion doctrine, a
claim is barred by prior litigation if the following elements
are present: (1) a final decision on the merits by a court of
competent jurisdiction; (2) a subsequent action between the
same parties or their privies; (3) an issue in the subsequent
action which was litigated or which should have been
litigated in the prior action; and (4) identity of the causes
of action. See Bittinger v. Tecumseh Prods. Co., 123
F.3d 877, 880 (6th Cir. 1997). The res judicata rule
“precludes not only relitigating a claim previously
adjudicated; it also precludes litigating a claim or defense
that should have been raised, but was not, in the prior
suit.” Mitchell, 343 F.3d at 819. In this
case, all four elements are present. The Court dismissed the
prior action on the merits, Plaintiff is again suing the same
defendants, this case involves the same claims and/or claims
which should have been raised in the prior case, and
Plaintiff brings the same cause of action under 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. The instant action must thus be dismissed
pursuant to the res judicata doctrine.
even if Plaintiff's claims are not subject to dismissal
on res judicata grounds, the Court finds that they
must be dismissed for failure to state claims upon which
relief may be granted under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and on the
basis of Eleventh Amendment immunity, as explained in the
Court's prior dismissal decision in No. 19-CV-10844.
for the reasons stated, the Court DISMISSES WITH
PREJUDICE Plaintiff's civil rights complaint
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2)(b) and 1915A.
Given this determination, the Court also
DENIES Plaintiff's motion for
appointment of counsel. Lastly, the Court concludes that an
appeal from this order cannot be taken in good faith.
See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3); Coppedge v.
United States, 369 U.S. 438, 445 (1962). This case is
closed. No. further pleadings should be filed in this matter.