United States District Court, D. New Jersey
BRITTON, PLAINTIFF PRO SE, SOUTH WOODS STATE PRISON
HONORABLE JEROME B. SIMANDLE, U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE
Plaintiff Lonnie Britton, a convicted and sentenced state
prisoner currently confined at South Woods State Prison
(“SWSP”) seeks to bring a civil rights complaint
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. By order dated September
9, 2017, this Court granted his application to proceed in
forma pauperis and directed the Clerk to file the
complaint. Docket Entry 3.
the 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.
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.
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 redress against a governmental
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).
According 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)).
survive sua sponte screening for failure to state a
claim,  the complaint must allege
“sufficient factual matter” to show that the
claim is facially plausible. Warren Gen. Hosp. v. Amgen
Inc., 643 F.3d 77, 84 (3d Cir. 2011) (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).
Moreover, while pro se pleadings are liberally
construed, “pro se litigants 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) (emphasis
plaintiff may have a cause of action under 42 U.S.C. §
1983 for certain 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