JOHNSON v. DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES (2020)
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit.
Brenda M. JOHNSON, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES; et al., Defendants-Appellees.
Decided: April 10, 2020
Before: TASHIMA, BYBEE, and WATFORD, Circuit Judges.
Brenda M. Johnson, Pro Se Zebular James Madison, Assistant Attorney General, AGWA - Office of the Washington Attorney General, Tacoma, WA, for Defendants-Appellees
Brenda M. Johnson appeals pro se from the district court’s judgment dismissing her 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action against the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services (“DSHS”) and Terry Rembert alleging various claims. We have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1291. We review de novo the district court’s sua sponte dismissal for failure to state a claim under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6). Omar v. Sea-Land Serv., Inc., 813 F.2d 986, 991 (9th Cir. 1987). We affirm.
The district court properly dismissed Johnson’s action because Johnson failed to allege facts sufficient to state a plausible claim and DSHS is a state agency not subject to liability under § 1983. See Hebbe v. Pliler, 627 F.3d 338, 341-42 (9th Cir. 2010) (although pro se pleadings are construed liberally, a plaintiff must present factual allegations sufficient to state a plausible claim for relief); Maldonado v. Harris, 370 F.3d 945, 951 (9th Cir. 2004) (state agencies are not “persons” within the meaning of § 1983 and therefore not amenable to suit under § 1983).
We do not consider matters not specifically and distinctly raised and argued in the opening brief. See Padgett v. Wright, 587 F.3d 983, 985 n.2 (9th Cir. 2009).
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