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Williamson v. Naqvi

United States District Court, D. Connecticut

June 27, 2019

CLARENCE K. WILLIAMSON, Plaintiff,
v.
DR. SYED NAQVI, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

          INITIAL REVIEW ORDER

          Michael P. Shea, United States District Judge.

         The plaintiff, Clarence K. Williamson, is incarcerated at the Willard-Cybulski Correctional Institution in Enfield, Connecticut. Pending before the court is an amended complaint. For the reasons set forth below, the court will dismiss the amended complaint in part.

         I. Procedural Background

         The University of Connecticut was the only defendant listed in the caption on the first page of the original complaint. Although four physicians were listed as parties on subsequent pages of the complaint, the court did not consider them to be defendants because they were not listed in the caption as required by Rule 10(a), Fed. R. Civ. P.

         On April 17, 2019, the court dismissed the allegations against the University of Connecticut and permitted the plaintiff thirty days to file an amended complaint to the extent that he sought to assert claims against the four physicians who were not listed as defendants in the caption of the complaint. See Initial Review Order, ECF No. 11. The court informed the plaintiff that if he chose to file an amended complaint, it must include the dates on which each physician treated, spoke to or met with him regarding his knee injury; the name of the facility at which he met with, spoke to or received treatment from each physician; the nature of his requests for treatment; and a description of any treatment provided by each physician. See Id. at 7.

         On May 13, 2019, the plaintiff filed an amended complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Drs. Syed Naqvi, Omprakash Pillai, O'Hallerin and Vicki Sara Blumberg. See Am. Compl., ECF No. 12. For the reasons set forth below, the amended complaint will be dismissed in part.

         II. Legal Standard

         The court reviews the amended complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b) which requires a court to “dismiss . . . any portion of [a] complaint [filed by a prisoner that] is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, ” or that “seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief.” Id. This standard is applicable when an inmate is proceeding in forma pauperis as well as when an inmate has paid the filing fee. See Carr v. Dvorin, 171 F.3d 115 (2d Cir. 1999) (per curiam).

         Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure requires that a complaint contain “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). Although detailed allegations are not required, “a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face. A claim has facial plausibility when a plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted). A complaint that includes only “‘labels and conclusions,' ‘a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action' or ‘naked assertion[s]' devoid of ‘further factual enhancement, '” does not meet the facial plausibility standard. Id. (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 557 (2007)). Although courts have an obligation to interpret “a pro se complaint liberally, ” the complaint must include sufficient factual allegations to meet the standard of facial plausibility. See Harris v. Mills, 572 F.3d 66, 72 (2d Cir. 2009) (citations omitted).

         III. Facts

         On August 1, 2012, the plaintiff was “in The Custody of the Connecticut Marshalls Department at New Haven Union Avenue Detention.” See Am. Compl. at 7 ¶ 1. On August 1, 2012, two state marshals used handcuffs to hog-tie the plaintiff for over six hours. See Id. During this incident, the plaintiff suffered an injury to his left knee. He experienced swelling and an inability to fully extend or bend his left knee or walk without limping. See Id. The plaintiff submitted a complaint to the Connecticut Marshal's Service regarding the lack of treatment provided to him for the injuries caused by members of Connecticut's Marshal's Service. See Id. ¶ 2. He received no response to his complaint. See id.

         When the plaintiff arrived at Walker Correctional Institution (“Walker”), he submitted a request for medical treatment for symptoms including pain and swelling in his left knee. See Id. ¶ 3. On October 25, 2012, Dr. Naqvi, a physician assigned to provide medical treatment to inmates at Walker, reviewed x-rays of the plaintiff's left knee, issued an order for a bottom bunk pass for the plaintiff, and prescribed Naproxen to treat the plaintiff's pain symptoms. See id.

         At some point between July and August 2013, at MacDougall Correctional Institution (“MacDougall”), Dr. Pillai examined the plaintiff in response to his complaints of pain and an inability to fully extend his left knee. See Id. ¶ 4. Dr. Pillai recommended no follow-up treatment for the plaintiff. See id.

         At some point in 2014, Dr. O'Hallerin replaced Dr. Pillai as the physician assigned to provide medical treatment to inmates at MacDougall. See Id. at 8 ¶ 5. The plaintiff sought treatment from Dr. O'Hallerin because his knee was painful and swollen and he could not fully extend it. See Id. Dr. O'Hallerin examined the plaintiff's left knee, noted the possibility of a tear of the anterior cruciate ligament or of the lateral collateral ligament in the knee, suggested that the plaintiff lose weight, issued the plaintiff a knee brace, and prescribed a medication that he explained would relieve the pressure on his left knee. See Id. Dr. O'Hallerin also suggested that the plaintiff undergo an MRI of his left knee. See Id. “No Follow-up or MRI was performed.” See id.

         On February 20, 2015, Dr. Pillai replaced Dr. O'Hallerin as the physician assigned to provide medical treatment to inmates at MacDougall. See Id. ¶ 6. On that date, the plaintiff complained of left knee pain. See Id. Dr. Pillai issued an order that the plaintiff undergo an MRI and x-ray of his left knee and verbally acknowledged that an MRI of the knee was medically necessary. See Id. at 5-6 ¶ 13. The plaintiff then alleges that Dr. Pillai did not schedule or arrange for the plaintiff to undergo an MRI of his left knee and did not follow up with the plaintiff. See id.

         At some point before January 20, 2016, prison officials at MacDougall transferred the plaintiff to Bridgeport Correctional Center (“Bridgeport CC”). See Id. ¶ 7. On January 20, 2016, in response to the plaintiff's complaints of left knee pain, Dr. Blumberg submitted a request to the Utilization Review Committee (“URC”) for approval ...


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