United States District Court, D. Minnesota
HARDY, PRO SE PLAINTIFF.
GREGORY G. BROOKER, ESQ., ASSISTANT UNITED STATES ATTORNEY,
COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANTS.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
R. THORSON, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
se Plaintiff Lajuan Hardy alleges that his First
Amendment free-exercise rights were violated when the Federal
Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”) did not accommodate a
prayer on an Islamic holiday at the Federal Medical Center in
Rochester (“FMC Rochester”). (Doc. No. 30, Second
Am. Compl.) Defendants--the BOP and several BOP
officials--move to dismiss. (Doc. No. 38.) For the reasons
stated below, this Court recommends that Defendants'
motion be granted.
times relevant to this lawsuit, Plaintiff was an inmate at
FMC Rochester. Plaintiff sues the following Defendants: (1)
the BOP; (2) Acting Warden Gregory Cooper; (3) Regional
Director Sara Revell; (4) National Inmate Appeals
Administrator Ian Connors; (4) Captain Todd Miller; (5)
Acting Lieutenant Christopher Bengtson; and (6) Supervisory
Chaplain Ricardo Alcoser. (Second Am. Compl.) Plaintiff seeks
five million dollars in compensatory and punitive damages.
alleges that the Defendants prevented him from participating
in the Eid al-Fitr prayer, which occurs at the end of
Ramadan. (Second Am. Compl. 2.) He claims that he and other
Muslim inmates had been placed on “callout” to
the chapel to pray the Eid al-Fitr prayer, but the Chaplain
department exhibited “gross negligence” in
failing to ensure a staff member was available to supervise
the Muslim observance of the prayer. (Id.) According
to Plaintiff, he and other inmates were ordered to return to
their units, told that the Chaplain would be contacted, and
told that they would be brought back to the Chapel another
time, which did not happen. (Id.)
alleges claims under Bivens v. Six Unknown Named
Agents, 403 U.S. 368 (1971), the Religious Land Use and
Institutionalized Persons Act (“RLUIPA”), the
Religious Freedom Restoration Act (“RFRA”), and
the Federal Tort Claims Act (“FTCA”).
(See Second Am. Compl.) Defendants move to dismiss
under Rules 12(b)(1) (subject-matter jurisdiction) and
12(b)(6) (failure to state a claim) of the Federal Rules of
moving to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(1) may assert either a
facial attack on a federal court's subject-matter
jurisdiction, which looks only to the face of the pleadings,
or a factual attack, which considers matters outside the
pleadings. Croyle by and through Croyle v. United
States, 908 F.3d 377, 380 (8th Cir. 2018). In a facial
attack, the 12(b)(1) movant “asserts that the
challenged pleading fails to allege sufficient facts to
support subject matter jurisdiction.” Davis v.
Anthony, Inc., 886 F.3d 674, 679 (8th Cir. 2018). The
Court “restricts itself to the face of the pleadings,
and the non-moving party receives the same protections as it
would defending against a motion brought under Rule
survive a motion to dismiss 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 Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570).
Under this pleading standard, “[a] claim has facial
plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that
allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the
defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555. Thus, the Court in
examining a motion to dismiss must determine whether the
plaintiff raises a plausible claim of entitlement to relief
after assuming all factual allegations in the complaint to be
true. Id. at 558.
alleges claims against the individual BOP officials in this
action under Bivens v. Six Unknown Fed. Agents, 403
U.S. 388 (1971), which implied a private right of action for
allegations of constitutional violations made against federal
employees. In Bivens, the Supreme Court created an
implied cause of action based on a Fourth Amendment
violation. Bivens, 403 U.S. at 397. The Court
subsequently found the Bivens remedy available for
violations of an individual's rights under the equal
protection component of the Fifth Amendment Due Process
Clause and for deliberate indifference to a serious medical
condition under the Eighth Amendment. See Davis v.
Passman, 442 U.S. 228, 230 (1979); Carlson v.
Green, 446 U.S. 14, 17-19 (1980). “These three