Shearer v. Jones
MEMORANDUM OPINION Signed by Judge William M Acker, Jr on 2/25/16. (SAC )
2016 Feb-25 PM 03:29
U.S. DISTRICT COURT
N.D. OF ALABAMA
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
JUDGE CLYDE JONES,
CIVIL ACTION NO.
Before the court is the putative conflict of pro se plaintiff
Tameka Shearer filed on January 29, 2016.1 (Doc. 1). On February 3,
2016, Magistrate Judge Putnam entered a reassignment order on the
basis that the case on its face is due to be dismissed following a
review pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915. (Doc. 5).
February 4, 2016, the Clerk reassigned the above-entitled case to
the undersigned. (Doc. 6).
For the reasons stated below, the court will by separate order
dismiss the putative action.
Where a plaintiff proceeds in forma pauperis, “the court shall
dismiss the case at any time if the court determines that the
action . . . (i) is frivolous or malicious; (ii) fails to state a
claim on which relief may be granted; or (iii) seeks monetary
While the complaint purports to be filed by Tameka Shearer
and TaDarrius Parker, the complaint is signed only by Ms.
Shearer, who is not an attorney, and cannot therefore represent
Mr. Parker, her adult son. (Doc. 1). Therefore, the only proper
plaintiff to this action is Ms. Shearer.
relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief.” 28
U.S.C § 1915(e)(2).
FRIVOLOUSNESS & FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM
“A case is frivolous if (1) the factual allegations are
(2) it is based on a[n] ‘indisputably
meritless legal theory.’” Smith v. Hildebrand, 244 F. App'x 288,
290 (11th Cir. 2007) (quoting Carroll v. Gross, 984 F.2d 392, 393
(11th Cir. 1993)).
“A complaint fails to state a claim when it
appears beyond doubt that the plaintiff can prove no set of facts
in support of her claim which would entitle her to relief.” Id.
(citing Marsh v. Butler County, Ala., 268 F.3d 1014, 1022-23 (11th
A review of the instant pleading makes clear from the face of
the complaint that the claim is both without a factual or legal
Ms. Shearer’s complaint consists of her allegations that,
during the course of her son’s criminal case, state-court Judge
Clyde Jones was rude and “very unjust.” (Doc. 1 at 2).
the only damages she alleges to have suffered (as opposed to any
claim that her son may be able to assert) is that the judge was
“nasty and disrespectful,” caused her to have “tears in [her]
eyes,” and denied her request that he rule on her son’s pending
Rule 32 petition while she waited in the courtroom. (Doc. 1 at 4).
Moreover, even if the complaint were construed to allege a
claim on behalf of Mr. Parker, his claim in this civil action would
be barred by Heck v. Humphrey, 512 U.S. 477, 486–87 (1994) (civil
tort actions are not proper vehicles for an action for damages that
rest upon a finding that a criminal conviction was unlawful). To
the extent that Mr. Parker is attacking his conviction,
legality of his custody, or is seeking release from custody, “his
sole federal remedy is a writ of habeas corpus.” Preiser v.
Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 475, 500 (1973) (emphasis added).
“Judges are entitled to absolute judicial immunity from
damages for those acts taken while they are acting in their
judicial capacity unless they acted in the clear absence of all
jurisdiction.” Franklin v. Arbor Station, LLC, 549 F. App'x 831,
834 (11th Cir. 2013) (citing Bolin v. Story, 225 F.3d 1234, 1239
(11th Cir. 2000)). “A judge will not be deprived of immunity
because the action he took was in error, was done maliciously, or
was in excess of his authority.” Jarallah v. Simmons, 191 F.
App'x 918, 920 (11th Cir. 2006) (quoting Stump v. Sparkman, 435
U.S. 349 (1978)).
The only defendant in this action, a sitting state-court
judge, is immune from suit on the basis of judicial immunity.
Ms. Shearer alleges that the Judge Jones was “unjust” and “rude”
(Doc. 1 at 2), conduct that, even if accepted as true, falls
within the scope of judicial immunity.
The court by separate order shall dismiss the above-entitled
case on the basis that it is frivolous, fails to state a claim,
and is barred by judicial immunity. 28 U.S.C § 1915(e)(2)(i)(iii).
DONE this 25th day of February, 2016.
WILLIAM M. ACKER, JR.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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