United States District Court, W.D. Texas, San Antonio Division
SHOW CAUSE ORDER
ELIZABETH S. ("BETSY") CHESTNEY UNITED STATES
the Court is the Civil Rights Complaint [#1] filed by the
Plaintiff, Richard Dee Wilder (“Plaintiff”),
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff is ordered to
file an amended complaint clarifying his allegations and, to
the extent possible, curing the Complaint's legal
deficiencies, which are described below.
to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b)(1), this Court is required to
screen any civil complaint in which a prisoner seeks relief
against a government entity, officer, or employee and dismiss
the complaint if the court determines it is frivolous,
malicious, or fails to state a claim on which relief may be
granted. See also 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)
(directing court to dismiss case filed in forma
pauperis at any time if it is determined that the action
is (i) frivolous or malicious or (ii) fails to state a claim
on which relief may be granted).
action is frivolous where there is no arguable legal or
factual basis for the claim. Neitzke v. Williams,
490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). “A complaint lacks an
arguable basis in law if it is based on an indisputably
meritless legal theory, such as if the complaint alleges
violation of a legal interest which clearly does not
exist.” Harper v. Showers, 174 F.3d 716, 718
(5th Cir. 1999) (internal quotation and citation omitted). A
complaint is factually frivolous when “the facts
alleged are ‘fantastic or delusional scenarios' or
the legal theory upon which a complaint relies is
‘indisputably meritless.'” Eason v.
Thaler, 14 F.3d 8, n.5 (5th Cir. 1994) (quoting
Neitzke, 490 U.S. at 327-28).
evaluating whether a complaint states a claim under §
1915A(b)(1) and § 1915(e)(2)(B), this Court applies the
same standards governing dismissals pursuant to Rule
12(b)(6). See DeMoss v. Crain, 636 F.3d 145, 152
(5th Cir. 2011). To avoid dismissal under Rule 12(b)(6),
“a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter,
accepted as true, ‘to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-56, 570 (2007)).
These factual allegations need not be detailed but
“must be enough to raise a right to relief above the
speculative level.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555.
A conclusory complaint-one that fails to state material facts
or merely recites the elements of a cause of action-may be
dismissed for failure to state a claim. See Id. at
Deficiencies in Plaintiff's Complaint
§ 1983 Complaint states: He was arrested on May 8, 2018
for possession of a controlled substance and pursuant to a
parole violator's warrant. The parole warrant has been
lifted but Plaintiff alleges it was in effect for six and a
half months past his parole discharge date. He remains in
BCADC custody awaiting trial on the possession of a
controlled substance case. Plaintiff alleges if the parole
warrant had been lifted on his discharge date of June 6,
2018, he would have been able to make bail on the possession
charge and would have been released. Plaintiff sues Parole
Board Analyst Michael Hardges, Parole Warrants Officer Lela
Smith, and Texas Department of Criminal Justice Correctional
Institutions Division (“TDCJ-CID”) Classification
and Records Department Supervisor Charles Valdez seeking
“reimbursement for lost wages and loss of freedom for
the last 13 months.”
explained above, an IFP plaintiff's complaint is
considered frivolous and is subject to dismissal if it fails
to state a claim on which relief can be granted. In this
case, Plaintiff's claims currently have the following
The Parole Board and the Defendants in their official
capacities are immune from suit pursuant to the Eleventh
Eleventh Amendment bars suits against a state. A claim
against the Parole Board or the Defendants in their official
capacities, is, in effect, a claim against the State of
Texas, and is barred by Eleventh Amendment sovereign
immunity. See Will v. Michigan Dep't of State
Police, 491 U.S. 58, 69-71 & n.10 (1989).
Parole Board personnel Hardges and Smith are absolutely
immune from suit in their individual capacities for their
role in the revocation process.
parole revocation warrant that Plaintiff challenges was
issued under the authority of the Board of Pardons and
Paroles. It is well settled that the Board of Pardons and
Paroles members and their personnel-in their individual
capacities-are absolutely immune when performing their
adjudicative function, which includes the parole revocation
procedure and conduct “inexorably connected with the
execution of parole revocation procedures.” Hulsey
v. Owens, 63 F.3d 354, 356-57 (5th Cir. 1995).
Therefore, Defendants Hardges and Smith are absolutely immune
from suit in their individual capacities for their roles in
acting on behalf of the Board of Pardons and Paroles in
issuing the parole revocation warrant. See id.
Plaintiff failed to allege a basis for suing the TDCJ-CID