460 F.2d 765 (5th Cir. 1972), 72-1737, Campbell v. Beto

Docket Nº:72-1737. [*]
Citation:460 F.2d 765
Party Name:Coy Ray CAMPBELL, Petitioner-Appellant, v. Dr. George J. BETO, Director of the Texas Department of Corrections, Respondent-Appellee.
Case Date:April 18, 1972
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

Page 765

460 F.2d 765 (5th Cir. 1972)

Coy Ray CAMPBELL, Petitioner-Appellant,

v.

Dr. George J. BETO, Director of the Texas Department of Corrections, Respondent-Appellee.

No. 72-1737. [*]

United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit.

April 18, 1972

Page 766

Coy Ray Campbell, pro se.

Crawford Martin, Atty. Gen. of Tex., Austin, Tex., for respondent-appellee.

Before JOHN R. BROWN, Chief Judge, and GOLDBERG and MORGAN, Circuit Judges.

JOHN R. BROWN, Chief Judge:

The District Court refused to allow this § 1983 suit by an inmate of the Texas Department of Corrections to ever get off the ground, by (i) refusing to permit it to even be docketed without prepayment of costs, (ii) dismissing the "undocketed" case under Rule 12(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for failure to state a claim on which relief could be granted, and (iii) refusing to allow an appeal in forma pauperis from these actions. We conclude that the District Court erred in these actions 1 and accordingly grant leave to file the appeal in forma pauperis and vacate the District Court's order dismissing the case.

At the outset it must be remembered that prisoner petitions, no less than any other complaint filed in Federal Court, may not be dismissed on the pleadings "unless it appears to a certainty that the plaintiff would not be entitled to recover under any state of facts which could be proved in support of his claim." Cook & Nichol, Inc. v. Plimsoll Club, 5 Cir., 1971, 451 F.2d 505, 506; Haines v. Kerner, 1972, 404 U.S. 519, 92 S.Ct. 594, 30 L.Ed.2d 652; Conley v. Gibson, 1957, 355 U.S. 41, 78 S.Ct. 99, 2 L.Ed.2d 80; Barber v. M/V "Blue Cat," 5 Cir., 1967, 372 F.2d 626; Cruz v. Beto, 1972, 405 U.S. 319, 92 S.Ct. 1079, 31 L.Ed.2d 263. For purposes of considering a Rule 12(b) motion to dismiss the well pleaded allegations of the complaint must be accepted as true. Cruz v. Beto, supra; Holmes v. Silver Cross Hospital, N.D.Ill., 1972, 340 F.Supp. 125; Cooper v. Pate, 1964, 378 U.S. 546, 84 S.Ct. 1733, 12 L.Ed.2d 1030.

On that approach, the petition in the present case alleges the following events. Petitioner is an inmate at the Wynn Unit of the Texas Department of Corrections who has been classified a Fourth Class Medical by the TDC as a result of heart trouble. Allegedly, under TDC regulations his Fourth Class Medical classification-which is to the prison system what 4-F is to the military- absolutely prohibits TDC officials from ordering him to perform work in the field. Nevertheless, the petition charges, "on or about the date of August 12, 1970, Respondent Warden C. L. McAdams knowing full well that Plaintiff was classified Class IV medically by virtue of said heart condition and classified as well not to be subjected to manual labor or worked in the field, did knowingly, willfully and negligently order the plaintiff to be assigned to a 'hoe squad' and made to work in the field where the Plaintiff was required to do heavy manual labor such as digging pipe

Page 767

line ditches, carrying 100 pounds sacks of dairy feed, shovel dirt, etc."

Further, the petition alleges, a TDC doctor (Dr. Mitchell) had previously examined the prisoner, diagnosed his condition as "Tachicardias" and prescribed a medication known as "Purodigin" to control the condition, but that the defendants "knowingly, willfully and negligently refused to permit" the medication to be sent to the prisoner while he was in the field.

As a result of this hard labor assignment and refusal to allow medication, the prisoner suffered a heart attack on November 18, 1970.

Thereafter the petitioner instituted the present suit seeking (i) compensatory damages in the amount of $15,000, (ii) injunctive relief against his being ordered to perform other hard work or field labor, and (iii) injunctive relief ordering proper medical attention for all inmates. While this petition was pending in the District Court, petitioner was placed in Disciplinary Lock-Up on a restricted diet of bread and water for fifteen days. Although TDC regulations seem to require daily examination of inmates in segregated status, 2 the supplemental complaint alleges that the defendants, knowing full well of petitioner's heart condition, did nonetheless "knowingly, willfully and negligently * * * refuse plaintiff permission to see a doctor until the thirteenth day," at which time Dr. Shelton did examine the plaintiff and order the medical captain to provide the inmate with three meals a day as well as certain medication. The plaintiff did not receive either the food or the medication until his release from Disciplinary Lock-Up some days later.

When petitioner requested that the District Court add these allegations to the petition then pending and filed, various TDC officials allegedly "advised" the plaintiff that "the filing of any further legal action against the TDC or its officials constituted 'agitation' and * * * if [plaintiff] filed any further writs against the TDC or its officials" he would be punished.

Finally, the petitioner alleges that throughout his incarceration TDC officials have utilized "persons not licensed to practice medicine in the State of Texas to diagnose ailments of inmates and prescribe medicines therefor and more particularly did order and utilize persons not licensed to practice medicine in the State of Texas, to wit: Respondent T. L. Waggoner, Medical Captain, and Inmates Joe Goodman, Massey and Hirsch, to diagnose plaintiff's ailments and prescribe medicines therefor and further did willfully and negligently fail to provide a full time...

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  • 103 F.R.D. 96 (E.D.Wis. 1984), 83-C-0005, Armstrong v. Snyder
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 7th Circuit Eastern District of Wisconsin
    • 5 Septiembre 1984
    ...violations are not denied at the pleading stage. Rodgers v. Westbrook, 362 F.Supp. 353, 354 (E.D.Mo.1973); Campbell v. Beto, 460 F.2d 765, 766, 769 (5th Although the Court agrees with the defendant in this case that several of the allegations in the complaint are somewhat conclusory, it doe......
  • 371 F.Supp. 594 (S.D.N.Y. 1974), 70 Civ. 3962, Rhem v. Malcolm
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 2nd Circuit Southern District of New York
    • 7 Enero 1974
    ...judicial eyes to prison conditions which present a grave and immediate threat to health or physical well being." Campbell v. Beto, 460 F.2d 765, 768 (5th Cir. 1972). As Chief Judge Kaufman has recently written "a tolerable living environment is now guaranteed by the law" for ......
  • 393 F.Supp. 757 (D.Md. 1975), Civ. 73-494, Stokes v. Hurdle
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 4th Circuit District of Maryland
    • 26 Marzo 1975
    ...39 (1974); Jones v. Lockhart, 484 F.2d 1192, 1194 (8th Cir. 1973); Corby v. Conboy, 457 F.2d 251, 254 (2d Cir. 1972); Campbell v. Beto, 460 F.2d 765 (5th Cir. 1972); Shields v. Kunkel, 442 F.2d 409, 410 (9th Cir. 1971); McDonald v. Boslow, 363 F.Supp. 493, 498 (D.Md.1973); Brown v. Cliff, 3......
  • 401 A.2d 1166 (Pa.Super. 1979), Commonwealth v. Stanley
    • United States
    • Pennsylvania Superior Court of Pennsylvania
    • 12 Abril 1979
    ...under the federal Civil Rights Act (42 U.S.C. § 1983), See, e. g., Fox v. Sullivan, 539 F.2d 1065 (5th Cir. 1976); Campbell v. Beto, 460 F.2d 765 (5th Cir. 1972), for contesting oppressive prison conditions, we restrict the defense to all but the most extreme situations. An example of such ......
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103 cases
  • 103 F.R.D. 96 (E.D.Wis. 1984), 83-C-0005, Armstrong v. Snyder
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 7th Circuit Eastern District of Wisconsin
    • 5 Septiembre 1984
    ...violations are not denied at the pleading stage. Rodgers v. Westbrook, 362 F.Supp. 353, 354 (E.D.Mo.1973); Campbell v. Beto, 460 F.2d 765, 766, 769 (5th Although the Court agrees with the defendant in this case that several of the allegations in the complaint are somewhat conclusory, it doe......
  • 371 F.Supp. 594 (S.D.N.Y. 1974), 70 Civ. 3962, Rhem v. Malcolm
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 2nd Circuit Southern District of New York
    • 7 Enero 1974
    ...judicial eyes to prison conditions which present a grave and immediate threat to health or physical well being." Campbell v. Beto, 460 F.2d 765, 768 (5th Cir. 1972). As Chief Judge Kaufman has recently written "a tolerable living environment is now guaranteed by the law" for ......
  • 393 F.Supp. 757 (D.Md. 1975), Civ. 73-494, Stokes v. Hurdle
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 4th Circuit District of Maryland
    • 26 Marzo 1975
    ...39 (1974); Jones v. Lockhart, 484 F.2d 1192, 1194 (8th Cir. 1973); Corby v. Conboy, 457 F.2d 251, 254 (2d Cir. 1972); Campbell v. Beto, 460 F.2d 765 (5th Cir. 1972); Shields v. Kunkel, 442 F.2d 409, 410 (9th Cir. 1971); McDonald v. Boslow, 363 F.Supp. 493, 498 (D.Md.1973); Brown v. Cliff, 3......
  • 401 A.2d 1166 (Pa.Super. 1979), Commonwealth v. Stanley
    • United States
    • Pennsylvania Superior Court of Pennsylvania
    • 12 Abril 1979
    ...under the federal Civil Rights Act (42 U.S.C. § 1983), See, e. g., Fox v. Sullivan, 539 F.2d 1065 (5th Cir. 1976); Campbell v. Beto, 460 F.2d 765 (5th Cir. 1972), for contesting oppressive prison conditions, we restrict the defense to all but the most extreme situations. An example of such ......
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