Little v. Edwards et al
ORDER granting 57 Defendant Robertson's Motion to Compel. Plaintiff must answer Defendant Robertson's May 3, 2013 Interrogatories and Requests for Production on or before 8/9/2013; denying 58 Plaintiff's Motion to Appoint Counsel. Signed by Magistrate Judge J. Thomas Ray on 07/17/2013. (kcs)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
CLAYTON EDWARDS, Captain,
White County Jail, et al.
Plaintiff, Jimmy Little, has filed this pro se § 1983 action alleging that
Defendants failed to provide him with adequate medical care while he was confined
in the White County Jail.
Separate Defendant Robertson has filed a Motion to Compel stating that
Plaintiff has not answered his May 3, 2013 Interrogatories and Requests for
Production. See Doc. #57. Plaintiff has filed a Motion for Appointment of Counsel
stating that he does not understand Defendant Robertson's discovery requests and that
his limited education prevents him from adequately representing himself in this action.
See Doc. #58. Accordingly, he asks the Court to appoint counsel.
A pro se litigant does not have a statutory or constitutional right to have counsel
appointed in a civil case. Phillips v. Jasper County Jail, 437 F.3d 791, 794 (8th Cir.
2006); Stevens v. Redwing, 146 F.3d 538, 546 (8th Cir. 1998). However, the Court
may, in its discretion, appoint counsel for a pro se prisoner if it is convinced that he
has stated a non-frivolous claim and that “the nature of the litigation is such that
plaintiff as well as the court will benefit from the assistance of counsel.” Johnson v.
Williams, 788 F.2d 1319, 1322 (8th Cir. 1986). In making this determination, the
Court must weigh and consider the following factors: (1) the factual and legal
complexity of the case; (2) the plaintiff's ability to investigate the facts; (3) the
presence or absence of conflicting testimony; and (4) the plaintiff's ability to present
his claims. Phillips, 437 F.3d at 794.
Plaintiff’s claims are not legally or factually complex. Furthermore, it appears
from the record that he is capable of presenting his claims without the benefit of
appointed counsel. Finally, Defendant Robertson's Interrogatories and Request for
Production seek factual – not legal – information about Plaintiff and the events he
personally experienced. Plaintiff's limited education will not prevent him from
answering those factual questions or locating any documents he might have that are
responsive to Defendant Robertson's discovery requests.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED THAT:
Defendant Robertson's Motion to Compel (Doc. #57) is GRANTED.
Plaintiff must answer Defendant Robertson's May 3, 2013 Interrogatories
and Requests for Production on or before August 9, 2013.
Plaintiff's Motion for Appointment of Counsel (Doc. #58) is DENIED.
Dated this 17th day of July, 2013.
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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