United States District Court, D. Colorado
LORI A. SKINNER, Plaintiff,
ST MARY'S MEDICAL CENTER-SCL-HEALTH INCORP SERVICES, Defendant.
RECOMMENDATION REGARDING DISMISSAL
P. Gallagher, United States Magistrate Judge
matter comes before the Court on the Complaint (ECF No.
Plaintiff proceeds pro se. The matter has been
referred to this Magistrate Judge for recommendation (ECF No.
The Court has considered the entire case file, the applicable
law, and is sufficiently advised in the premises. This
Magistrate Judge respectfully recommends that the Complaint
be dismissed without prejudice.
Factual and Procedural Background
Plaintiff, Lori A. Skinner, resides in DeBeque, Colorado. She
initiated this action on March 18, 2019, by filing pro
se a Complaint (ECF No. 1) and an Application to Proceed
in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs (Long Form)
(ECF No. 3). Ms. Skinner has been granted leave to proceed
in forma pauperis pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915.
(ECF No. 4).
Skinner alleges in the Complaint that medical staff at St.
Mary's Medical Center acted with “gross
negligence” when she sought emergency room treatment in
September 2018. Plaintiff does not explain how the medical
providers were negligent. Ms. Skinner claims that the
Defendant violated 19 U.S.C. § 1592, and alleges that
this Court has subject matter jurisdiction over her claim(s)
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1331. She requests monetary and
March 19, 2019, the Court ordered Ms. Skinner to file an
Amended Complaint within 30 days because her original
Complaint failed to comply with the pleading requirements of
Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. (ECF No. 4).
Skinner did not file an amended pleading by the deadline and
she has not communicated with the Court since she initiated
this action. Therefore, the Court reviews the sufficiency of
the original Complaint filed on March 18, 2019.
Pro se Litigant
Court construes the original Complaint liberally because Ms.
Skinner is not represented by an attorney. See Haines v.
Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 52021 (1972); Hall v.
Bellmon, 935 F.2d 1106, 1110 (10th Cir. 1991). However,
the Court will not act as an advocate for a pro se litigant.
See Hall, 935 F.2d at 1110.
Rule 8 Pleading Requirements
twin purposes of a complaint are to give the opposing parties
fair notice of the basis for the claims against them so that
they may respond and to allow the Court to conclude that the
allegations, if proven, show that the plaintiff is entitled
to relief. See Monument Builders of Greater Kansas City,
Inc. v. American Cemetery Ass'n of Kansas, 891 F.2d
1473, 1480 (10th Cir. 1989). The requirements of Rule 8 of
the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure are designed to meet
these purposes. See TV Communications Network, Inc. v.
ESPN, Inc., 767 F.Supp. 1062, 1069 (D. Colo. 1991),
aff'd, 964 F.2d 1022 (10th Cir. 1992). Rule 8(a)
provides that a complaint “must 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 philosophy of Rule
8(a) is reinforced by Rule 8(d)(1), which provides that
“[e]ach allegation must be simple, concise, and
direct.” Taken together, Rules 8(a) and (d)(1)
underscore the emphasis placed on clarity and brevity by the
federal pleading rules. Prolix, vague, or unintelligible
pleadings violate Rule 8.
comply with Rule 8, a complaint must explain what the
defendant did to the plaintiff; when the defendant di it; how
the defendant's action harmed the plaintiff; and, what
specific legal right the plaintiff believes the defendant
violated. See Nasious v. Two Unknown B.I.C.E.
Agents, 492 F.3d 1158, 1163 (10th Cir. 2007).
pro se litigant's vague and conclusory
allegations that his or her rights have been violated does
not entitle the litigant to a day in court regardless of how
liberally the pleadings are construed. See Ketchum v.
Cruz, 775 F.Supp. 1399, 1403 (D. Colo. 1991)),
aff'd, 961 F.2d 916 (10th Cir. 1992).
“[I]n analyzing the sufficiency of the plaintiff's
complaint, the court need accept as true only the