United States District Court, D. Maryland
J. HAZEL UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
3, 2019, Nicholas Parks filed the above-captioned complaint
pro se against 13 separate defendants alleging,
inter alia, medical malpractice and violations of
his rights under the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments while
he was incarcerated at the Wicomico County Detention
- Center ("WCDC") in Salisbury, Maryland.
ECF No. 1. On August 8, 2019, Parks filed a Motion for
Preliminary Injunction and/or Protective Order requesting
medical attention, as well as a Motion for Appointment of
Counsel. ECF No. 4. On October 29, 2019, counsel entered his
appearance for defendant WCDC, and subsequently entered his
appearance on behalf of defendants Preston Foreman and
Michael Jamison (collectively, the "Correctional
Defendants"). ECF Nos. 9, 11. On December 16, 2019, the
Correctional Defendants filed a Motion for Extension of Time
to respond to Parks' filings. ECF No. 12. According to
counsel, none of the 10 remaining defendants appears to be a
Wicomico County employee, has been served, or has otherwise
agreed to waive service of process. Id. at
¶¶ 1, 4.
review of the complaint and the 35-page attachment thereto,
it is unclear wnat Parks' claims are against each
defendant. See ECF No. 1-1. Under Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 8(a), a pleading which sets forth a claim for
relief shall contain: (1) a short and plain statement of the
grounds for the court's jurisdiction; (2) a short and
plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is
entitled to relief; and (3) a demand for the relief sought.
The "short and plain statement of the claim" must
simply "give the defendant fair notice of what the
plaintiffs clairri is and the grounds upon which it
rests." Swierkiewicz v. Sorema N. A., 534 U.S.
506, 512 (2002) (quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S.
41, 47 (1957)). Under Rule 8(d)(1), each allegation in a
complaint should be "simple, concise, and direct."
Furthermore, a pleading that offers labels and conclusions or
a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action
does not satisfy these basip pleading requirements.
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting
Bell Ail. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555
a complaint need not contain detailed allegations, the facts
alleged must be enough to raise a right to relief above the
speculative level and require "more than labels and
conclusions," as courts "are not bound to accept as
true a legal conclusion couched as a factual
allegation." Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. A
complaint must contain "enough facts to state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face." Id. at
570. Once a claim has been stated adequately, it may be
supported by showing any set of facts consistent with the
allegations in the complaint. Id. at 561.
pleadings are liberally construed and held to a less
stringent standard than bleadings drafted by lawyers.
Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (citing
Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976));
accord Brown v. N.C. Dep't of Corr., 612 F.3d
720, 722 (4th Cir. 2010). Pro se complaints are entitled to
special care to determine whether any possible set of facts
would entitle the plaintiff to relief. Hughes v.
Rowe, 449 U.S. 5, 9-10 (1980). Nonetheless,
"[w]hile pro se complaints may 'represent the work
of an untutored hand requiring special judicial
solicitude,' a district court is not required to
recognize 'obscure or extravagant claims defying the most
concerted efforts to unravel them.'" Weller v.
Dep't of Soc. Servs. for Bait, 901 F.2d 387, 391
(4th Cir. 1990) (quoting Beaudett v. City of
Hampton, 775 F.2d 1274, 1277 (4th Cir. 1985)).
complaint, Parks summarily alleges that defendants violated
his constitutional rights. See ECF No. 1. Although
Parks included a 35-page attachment with his complaint, if is
unclear from Parks' lengthy handwritten notes and copies
of previous institutional grievance forms what his exact
claims are against each named defendant. In light of his
self-represented status, Parks will be provided an
opportunity to address the noted deficiency through an
amended complaint. See Goode v. Cent. Va. Legal Aid Soc
'y, Inc., 807 F.3d 619, 624 (4th Cir. 2015). In the
amended complaint, Parks must include: 1) how each defendant
is involved in this matter, including the defendant's
affiliation with WCDC; 2) what federal law or constitutional
provision he is alleging that each defendant violated; 3) the
dates of any relevant incidents; and 4) the facts supporting
his claims. Parks is forewarned that the failure to file an
amended complaint within the time specified herein may result
in dismissal of the complaint without prejudice and without
also filed a Motion for Preliminary Injunction and/or
Protective Order, which in its entirely states: "for my
hep-c, dental plates to be fixed so I'm able to eat and
be out of pain, mental health meds, corrective glasses and my
pain levels to be handle [sic] in a fair manner." ECF
No. 4. A preliminary injunction is an extraordinary and
drastic remedy. See Munaf v. Geren, 553 U.S. 674,
689-90 (2008). To obtain a preliminary injunction, a movant
must demonstrate: 1) that he is likely to succeed on the
merits; 2) that he is likely to suffer irreparable harm in
the absence of preliminary relief; 3) that the balance of
equities tips in his favor; and 4) that an injunction is in
the public interest. See Winter v. Nat. Res. Def.
Council, Inc., 555 U.S. 7 (2008); The Real Truth
About Obama, Inc. v. Fed. Election Comm'n, 575 F.3d
342, 346 (4th Cir. 2009), vacated on other grounds,
559 U.S. 1089 (2010), reinstated in relevant part on
remand, 607 F.3d 355 (4th Cir. 2010) (per curiam). At a
minimum, here, Parks cannot prove that he is likely to suffer
irreparable harm as he has failed to provide anything to
support his requests. Therefore, Parks' Motion for
Preliminary Injunction and/or Restraining Order shall be
his Motion for Preliminary Injunction and/or Protective
Order, Parks also included a Motion for Appointment of
Counsel. ECF No. 4. A federal district court judge's
power to appoint counsel under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1),
a discretionary one, and may be considered where an indigent
claimant presents exceptional circumstances. See Cook v.
Bounds, 518 F.2d 779 (4th Cir. 1975); see also
Branch v. Cole, 686 F.2d 264 (5th Cir. 1982). There is
no absolute right to appointment of counsel; an indigent
claimant must present "exceptional circurhstances."
See Miller v. Simmons, 814 F.2d 962, 966 (4th Cir.
1987). The question of whether such circumstances exist in a
particular case hinges on the characteristics of the claim
and the litigant. See Whisenant v. Yuam, 739 F.2d
160, 163 (4th Cir. 1984). Where a colorable claim exists but
the litigant has no capacity to present it, counsel should be
provides no reasons to support his Motion for Appointment of
Counsel. Rather, in the body of the motion, he merely
requests "a printout of [his] account" from several
correctional facilities. ECF No. 4. Thus, there are no
exceptional circumstances that would warrant the appointment
of an attorney to represent Parks under §1915(e)(1) at
this time, and his Motion for Appointment of Counsel will be
denied without prejudice.
the Correctional Defendants have filed a Motion for Extension
of Time seeking an additional 30 days in which to respond to
Parks' filings. ECF No. 12. That motion shall be granted.
As Parks is yet to amend his complaint, the Correctional
Defendants' response shall be due within 30 days from the
date Parks files his amendment.
separate order follows.
 Under § 1915(e)(1), a Court of
the United States may request an attorney to represent any
person unable ...