Submitted May 10, 2017 [*]
from the United States District Court for the District of
Nevada James C. Mahan, District Judge, Presiding. D.C. No.
J. Potter III and C.J. Potter III, Potter Law Offices, Las
Vegas, Nevada, for Plaintiff-Appellant.
G. Leslie, Chief Deputy Attorney General, Public
Safety/Litigation Division; Adam Paul Laxalt, Attorney
General; United States Attorney's Office, Carson City,
Nevada; for Defendants-Appellants.
Before: Richard R. Clifton and Michelle T. Friedland, Circuit
Judges, and Thomas O. Rice, [**] Chief District Judge.
panel reversed the district court's dismissal of a
complaint brought by a former prisoner and remanded for
panel held that the Prison Litigation Reform Act, 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A, applies only to claims brought by individuals
incarcerated at the time they file their complaints. Because
plaintiff was not so incarcerated, his claims should not have
been subjected to § 1915A screening.
Olivas, a former prisoner, sued correctional officers and the
Nevada Department of Corrections alleging violations of the
Eighth Amendment and various state laws for injuries he
suffered, and the medical treatment he received, after he was
struck by shotgun pellets that officers fired in an attempt
to quell an inmate altercation. The district court treated
the lawsuit as one brought by a prisoner and thus applied the
screening procedures established by § 1915A of the
Prison Litigation Reform Act ("PLRA"), 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A, dismissing the Complaint pursuant to those
procedures. We hold that 28 U.S.C. § 1915A applies only
to claims brought by individuals incarcerated at the time
they file their complaints. Because Olivas was not so
incarcerated, his claims should not have been subjected to
§ 1915A screening. We therefore reverse and remand.
31, 2012, an altercation broke out in the dining hall at High
Desert State Prison. Dario Olivas, a
prisoner at the time, was seated several tables away from the
altercation and was not involved in it. "[A]lmost
immediately after the altercation began, " one or more
officers fired pellets from a shotgun into the dining room.
The pellets struck Olivas in the eye, face, and upper body.
As a result, he lost sight in his right eye and suffered
permanent disfigurement, excruciating pain, and extreme
was released from prison in June 2014. In July 2014, Olivas
filed a pro se complaint in state court. After retaining
counsel, Olivas filed an amended complaint against
Correctional Officer Galbiso, the Nevada Department of
Corrections, and ten John Doe ...