United States District Court, D. New Jersey
Terrance D. Hooks, Plaintiff Pro Se
B. SIMANDLE Chief U.S. District Judge
the Court is Plaintiff Terrance Hooks's
(“Plaintiff”), submission of a civil rights
complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Complaint,
Docket Entry 1. 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 relief. For
the reasons set forth below, the Court concludes that the
complaint will be dismissed for failure to state a claim.
brings this civil rights action against Bridgeton Police
Officers Rick Pierce, Elliot Hernandez, and L. Santiago
Complaint ¶ 4. The following factual allegations are
taken from the complaint and are accepted for purposes of
this screening only. The Court has made no findings as to the
truth of Plaintiff's allegations.
states the officers “falsetify [sic] information and
tampered with evidence and paper work statement mislead on
trial not for truth violated Terrance Hooks constitutional
rights and sent Mr. Hooks to State Prison.”
Id. ¶ 6. He “wants justice serve on claim
of false imprisonment. A violation of public servant workers
policy of Bridgeton Police Department.” Id.
seeks relief in the form of $1, 300, 000 in damages.
Id. ¶ 7. He requests the appointment of pro
bono counsel and an investigator “to certain [sic]
false facts which are fabricated not for the truth on records
and transcripts and other files.” Id.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Standards for a Sua Sponte Dismissal
Prison Litigation Reform Act, Pub. L. No. 104-134,
§§ 801-810, 110 Stat. 1321-66 to 1321-77 (April 26,
1996) (“PLRA”), district courts must review
complaints in those civil actions in which a prisoner is
proceeding in forma pauperis, see 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(2)(B), seeks redress against a governmental
employee or entity, see 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b),
or brings a claim with respect to prison conditions,
see 42 U.S.C. § 1997e. The PLRA directs
district courts to sua sponte dismiss any claim that
is frivolous, is 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. This action is
subject to sua sponte screening for dismissal under
28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2)(b) and 1915A because
Plaintiff is a prisoner proceeding in forma pauperis
and is seeking relief from government employees.
to the Supreme Court's decision in Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, “a pleading that offers ‘labels or
conclusions' or ‘a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action will not do.'” 556
U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007)). To survive sua
sponte screening for failure to state a claim,
complaint must allege “sufficient factual matter”
to show that the claim is facially plausible. Fowler v.
UPMS Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210 (3d Cir. 2009)
(citation omitted). “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.” Fair Wind
Sailing, Inc. v. Dempster, 764 F.3d 303, 308 n.3 (3d
Cir. 2014) (quoting Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678).
determining the sufficiency of a pro se complaint, the Court
must be mindful to construe it liberally in favor of the
plaintiff. See Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89,
93-94 (2007) (following Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S.
97, 106 (1976)); see also United States v. Day, 969
F.2d 39, 42 (3d Cir. 1992). Although pro se
pleadings are liberally construed, plaintiffs “still
must allege sufficient facts in their complaints to support a
claim.” Mala v. Crown Bay Marina, Inc., 704
F.3d 239, 245 (3d Cir. 2013) (citation omitted).
Section 1983 Actions A plaintiff may have a cause of
action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for certain violations of
his constitutional ...