St. Louis Record

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Prisoner suing Corizon Health Services over alleged civil rights violations will have to provide more info in amended complaint, judge orders

Federal Court

By Charmaine Little | Sep 17, 2019


ST. LOUIS – On Aug. 22, Judge Rodney Sippel of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri’s Southeastern Division granted a prisoner's motion to amend his case over alleged civil rights violations.

Robert D. Nelson, a prisoner who is representing himself, sued Corizon Health Services, Rebekkah Graham, Jason Lewis and Southeast Correctional Center. He alleged his civil rights were infringed upon since he did not receive the pain medications he wanted. His suit was originally filed in July in Mississippi County Circuit Court and transferred by the defendants to the current court.

Corizon, Graham, Lewis and Southeast filed a motion to dismiss while Nelson filed a motion for an order of protection, motion for appointment of counsel, motion for temporary restraining order and injunction relief and motion for extension of time to file amended 41 U.S.C. and 1983 complaint and the Americans with Disabilities Act complaint.

Sippel ruled to hold the motions to dismiss in abeyance and granted Nelson's motion for leave to amend. The judge also denied the motions in other avenues and Nelson's motion for a protective order.

Sippel held the defendants' motions to dismiss in abeyance since the plaintiff didn’t include a copy of a proposed amended complaint for the motion. The judge also denied Nelson’s request for an appointment of counsel and for injunctive relief as well as his separate motion for a protective order because "plaintiff's allegations in support are simply too conclusory for the court to determine that plaintiff is entitled to such relief," the ruling states.

Nelson was given 30 days to file an amended complaint. He was ordered to type or neatly print an updated complaint and to include a statement of who he plans to sue, and whether he wants to do it in their individual or official capacity, as well as number his paragraphs on the complaint.

“It is important that plaintiff allege facts explaining how each defendant was personally in or directly responsible for harming him," Sippel wrote. "It is not enough for plaintiff to refer to a group of defendants and make general allegations against them. Instead, plaintiff must explain the role of each defendant, so that each defendant will have notice of what he or she is accused of doing or failing to do.”

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