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Arthur v. Corrections Officers Nathan Helper

United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division

October 11, 2019

DWANN ARTHUR, as Personal Representative of the Estate of WARREN ANDERSON, Deceased Plaintiff,
v.
CORRECTIONS OFFICERS NATHAN HELPER, HAMILTON, WRIGHT, and LEVY, Defendants.

          ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART DEFENDANTS' REVISED MOTION TO DISMISS [ECF #10]

          Victoria A. Roberts United States District Judge.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff Dwann Arthur (“Plaintiff”) is personal representative of the estate of Warren Anderson, deceased (“Anderson”). Defendants are corrections officers Helper, Hamilton, Wright, and Levy (“Defendants”). Plaintiff brings this civil rights action for damages under 42 U.S.C. §§ 1983, 1985, and 1986; the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution; and related state law claims, on behalf of Anderson. These claims stem from Anderson's health care while incarcerated.

         Defendants move to dismiss Count II of Plaintiff's complaint and claims for survivors' losses attached to Counts I and II.

         For the following reasons, the Court GRANTS Defendant's Motion to Dismiss in part and DENIES it in part.

         II. BACKGROUND

         A short summary of the facts is sufficient.

         Anderson was housed at Parnall Correctional Facility when he began to exhibit serious medical symptoms, including respiratory distress, inability to walk, physical weakness, and rapid breathing. Defendants allegedly ignored these symptoms and failed to respond to Anderson's cries for help despite their awareness of the severity of the situation, resulting in Anderson's death around April 8, 2018.

         Count I of Plaintiff's complaint is a deliberate indifference claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and the Eighth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Count II is a state-law claim for gross negligence. Counts I and II rely on the same facts and allegations. This is the basis for Defendants' motion to dismiss Count II: they say Plaintiff cannot bring a claim of gross negligence based on the same facts underlying a federal constitutional torts claim.

         Plaintiff makes claims for survivor's losses on both the federal and state claims.

         Defendants also argue: (1) the Court should decline to extend supplemental jurisdiction over the state law claims, and (2) Plaintiff cannot bring a claim attached to Counts I for survivor's losses such as loss of companionship and society, under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

         The Court GRANTS the Motion to Dismiss Count II and DENIES it for claims for survivor's losses. The issue of supplemental jurisdiction is moot.

         III. LEGAL STANDARD

         To survive a motion to dismiss, the nonmoving party must allege enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face. Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 167 L.Ed.2d 929 (2007). The facts must be construed in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Power & Tel. Supply Co. v. SunTrust Banks, Inc. 447 F.3d 923, 929-30 ...


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