United States District Court, D. Maryland
K. Bredar United States District Judge.
A. Henson, Jr., a Maryland Department of Corrections
(“DOC”) prisoner housed at Western Correctional
Institution, filed the instant civil rights complaint
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983, against the State of
Maryland and Anne Arundel Circuit Court. ECF 1, p. 1. For
reasons set forth herein, Henson's motion for leave to
proceed in forma pauperis shall be granted and the
complaint shall be dismissed.
seeks “access to the courts” and alleges a
laundry list of complaints regarding his confinement within
the DOC. He reiterates his often raised claim of a vast
conspiracy among correctional staff. ECF 1, p. 3. It is unclear
what relief he seeks. It is also unclear how the named
defendants, the State of Maryland and the Anne Arundel
Circuit Court, are alleged to have participated in the
allegations raised arising out of prison conditions in the
complaint is filed under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1), which
permits an indigent litigant to commence an action in federal
court without prepaying the filing fee. To guard against
possible abuses of this privilege, the statute requires a
district court to dismiss any claim that is frivolous or
malicious, or fails to state a claim on which relief may be
granted. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(i) and (ii).
context, this court is mindful of its obligation to liberally
construe the pleadings of pro se litigants. See Erickson
v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007). In evaluating a pro
se complaint, a plaintiff's allegations are assumed to be
true. Id. at 93 (citing Bell Atlantic Corp.
v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-56 (2007)).
Nonetheless, liberal construction does not mean that a court
can ignore a clear failure in the pleading to allege facts
which set forth a cognizable claim. See Weller v.
Dep't of Soc. Servs., 901 F.2d 387 (4th Cir. 1990);
see also Beaudett v. City of Hampton, 775 F.2d 1274,
1278 (4th Cir. 1985) (stating a district court may not
“conjure up questions never squarely
presented.”). In making this determination,
“[t]he district court need not look beyond the
complaint's allegations . . . . It must hold the pro se
complaint to less stringent standards than pleadings drafted
by attorneys and must read the complaint liberally.”
White v. White, 886 F.2d 721, 722-723 (4th Cir.
the Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution, a
state, its agencies and departments are immune from suits in
federal court brought by its citizens or the citizens of
another state, unless it consents. See Pennhurst State
Sch. and Hosp. v. Halderman, 465 U.S. 89, 100 (1984).
While the State of Maryland has waived its sovereign immunity
for certain types of cases brought in state courts,
see Md. Code Ann., State Gov't § 12-202(a),
it has not waived its immunity under the Eleventh Amendment
to suit in federal court. Thus, Henson's complaint
against both the State of Maryland and the Circuit Court for
Anne Arundel County, a State agency, is barred by the
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2) obligates federal courts to
dismiss cases at any time if the action is legally
frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim on which
relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief against a
defendant who is immune from such relief. The complaint shall
be dismissed under the provisions of 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e). See Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325
(1989); see also Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25,
32 (1992); Cochran v. Morris, 73 F.3d 1310, 1315
(4th Cir. 1996); Nasim v. Warden, 64 F.3d 951,
954-55 (4th Cir. 1995). Plaintiff is reminded that under 28
U.S.C. § 1915(g) he will not be granted in forma
pauperis status if he has “on 3 or more prior
occasions, while incarcerated or detained in any facility,
brought an action or appeal in a court of the United States
that was dismissed on the grounds that it is frivolous,
malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief may be
granted, unless the prisoner is under imminent danger of
serious physical injury.”
separate Order follows.
See Henson v. Likin, Civil
Action No. RWT-11-2719 (D. Md.), Henson v. Miller,
Civil Action No. RWT-12-763 (D. Md.) Henson v.
Lambert, Civil Action No. RWT-12-3271 (D. Md.),
Henson v. Smith, Civil Action No. RWT-13-2266 (D.
Md.); Henson v. Weber, RWT-14-340 (D. Md.)
Henson v. Graham, RDB-14-2058 (D.Md.). In those
cases, the court concluded that Henson's claims of a vast
conspiracy to cause him harm had been subject to
investigation and found to be without merit and ...