Tristan Allan v. Akanno
ORDER Denying 31 Motion to Appoint Counsel, signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara A. McAuliffe on 03/04/15. (Gonzalez, R)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
TRISTAN D. ALLAN,
ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR
APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL
(ECF No. 31)
Plaintiff Tristan D. Allan (“Plaintiff”) is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma
pauperis in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. This action proceeds on
Plaintiff’s complaint against Defendant Akanno for deliberate indifference to medical needs in
violation of the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution. A jury trial is scheduled
for June 20, 2015.
On March 2, 2015, Plaintiff filed the instant motion seeking the appointment of counsel.
Plaintiff does not have a constitutional right to appointed counsel in this action, Rand v. Rowland,
113 F.3d 1520, 1525 (9th Cir. 1997), and the court cannot require an attorney to represent
Plaintiff pursuant to 28 U.S.C. ' 1915(e)(1). Mallard v. United States District Court for the
Southern District of Iowa, 490 U.S. 296, 298, 109 S.Ct. 1814, 1816 (1989). However, in certain
exceptional circumstances the court may request the voluntary assistance of counsel pursuant to
section 1915(e)(1). Rand, 113 F.3d at 1525.
Without a reasonable method of securing and compensating counsel, the court will seek
volunteer counsel only in the most serious and exceptional cases. In determining whether
Aexceptional circumstances exist, the district court must evaluate both the likelihood of success of
the merits [and] the ability of the [plaintiff] to articulate his claims pro se in light of the
complexity of the legal issues involved.@ Id. (internal quotation marks and citations omitted).
In the present case, the court does not find the required exceptional circumstances. Even
if it is assumed that Plaintiff is not well versed in the law and that he has made serious allegations
which, if proved, would entitle him to relief, his case is not exceptional. This court is faced with
similar cases almost daily from indigent prisoners litigating claims of deliberate indifference to
serious medical needs, many of which involve expert testimony. Although this matter is
proceeding to trial, the court cannot make a determination that Plaintiff is likely to succeed on the
merits. The merits of Plaintiff’s claims were not tested by way of a summary judgment motion.
Moreover, based on a review of the record in this case, the court does not find that Plaintiff
cannot adequately articulate his claims. Id.
For the foregoing reasons, Plaintiff=s motion for the appointment of counsel is HEREBY
DENIED without prejudice.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
March 4, 2015
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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