The opinion of the court was delivered by: JEROME SIMANDLE, District Judge
Plaintiff, John Sease, currently incarcerated at the South
Woods State Prison, Bridgeton, New Jersey, seeks to bring this
action in forma pauperis without prepayment of fees
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915. Based on Plaintiff's affidavit of
indigence and institutional account statement, the Court will
grant his application to proceed in forma pauperis pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a) and order the Clerk of the Court to file
At this time, the Court must review the complaint pursuant to
28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2) and 1915A to determine whether it should
be dismissed as frivolous or malicious, for failure to state a
claim upon which relief may be granted, or because it seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such
The following factual allegations are taken from Plaintiff's
Complaint and are accepted as true for purposes of this review.
Plaintiff seeks to sue three Bridgeton Police Officers for
violating his constitutional rights. He states that on April 30,
2003, defendant Officer Parvin "forged [his] signature on the
Miranda card during [his] arrest." He further alleges that in
2002, defendant Detectives Zanni and Callebrese falsely charged
him with burglary and theft and that he was falsely imprisoned
due to these charges. Plaintiff asks for monetary relief and a
declaratory judgment that the officers violated his rights.
In 1996, Congress enacted the Prison Litigation Reform Act
("PLRA"), Title VIII of the Omnibus Consolidated Rescissions and
Appropriations Act of 1996, Pub.L. No. 104-134, 110 Stat. 1321
(April 26, 1996). Congress's purpose in enacting the PLRA was
"primarily to curtail claims brought by prisoners under
42 U.S.C. § 1983 and the Federal Tort Claims Act . . . many of which are
routinely dismissed as legally frivolous." Santana v. United
States, 98 F.3d 752, 755 (3d Cir. 1996). A crucial part of the
congressional plan for curtailing meritless prisoner suits is the requirement, embodied in 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b), that a court must
dismiss, at the earliest practicable time, any prisoner actions
that are frivolous or malicious, fail to state a claim, or seek
monetary relief from immune defendants. "A pro se complaint may
be dismissed for failure to state a claim only if it appears
`beyond doubt that the plaintiff can prove no set of facts in
support of his claim which would entitle him to relief.'"
Milhouse v. Carlson, 652 F.2d 371, 373 (3d Cir. 1981) (quoting
Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972)).
In determining the sufficiency of a complaint, the Court must
be mindful to construe it liberally in favor of the plaintiff.
See Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519 (1972); United States v.
Day, 969 F.2d 39, 42 (3d Cir. 1992). The Court should "accept as
true all of the allegations in the complaint and reasonable
inferences that can be drawn therefrom, and view them in the
light most favorable to the plaintiff." Morse v. Lower Merion
School Dist., 132 F.3d 902, 906 (3d Cir. 1997). The Court need
not, however, lend credit to a pro se plaintiff's "bald
assertions" or "legal conclusions." Id.
A plaintiff may have a federal cause of action under
42 U.S.C. § 1983 for alleged violations of his constitutional rights.
Section 1983 provides in relevant part:
Every person who, under color of any statute,
ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory . . . subjects, or causes to be
subjected, any citizen of the United States or other
person within the jurisdiction thereof to the
deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities
secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable
to the party injured in an action at law, suit in
equity, or other proper proceeding for redress.
Thus, to establish a violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1983, a plaintiff
must demonstrate that the challenged conduct was committed by a
person acting under color of state law and that the conduct
deprived him of rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the
Constitution or laws of the United States. See Parratt v.
Taylor, 451 U.S. 527
, 535 (1981), overruled in part on other
grounds by Daniels v. Williams, 474 U.S. 327
(1986); Adickes v.
S.H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144
, 152 (1970); Piecknick v.
Pennsylvania, 36 F.3d 1250
, 1255-56 (3d Cir. 1994).
C. Claim Against Officer Parvin.
Plaintiff claims that defendant Officer Parvin violated his
constitutional rights by forging his ...