Pappas v. North Kern State Prison et al

Filing 13

ORDER Denying Motion for Preliminary Injunctive Relief re 11 , signed by Magistrate Judge Gary S. Austin on 09/29/14. (Gonzalez, R)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 NICHOLAS CHRISTOPHER PAPPAS, 12 Plaintiff, 13 14 vs. 1:14-cv-00109-GSA-PC ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTIVE RELIEF (Doc. 11.) KERN VALLEY STATE PRISON, et al., 15 Defendants. 16 17 I. BACKGROUND 18 Nicholas Christopher Pappas (APlaintiff@) is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in 19 forma pauperis with this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. ' 1983. Plaintiff filed the 20 Complaint commencing this action on January 27, 2014. (Doc. 1.) 21 On March 24, 2014, Plaintiff consented to Magistrate Judge jurisdiction in this action 22 pursuant to 28 U.S.C. ' 636(c), and no other parties have made an appearance. (Doc. 6.) 23 Therefore, pursuant to Appendix A(k)(4) of the Local Rules of the Eastern District of 24 California, the undersigned shall conduct any and all proceedings in the case until such time as 25 reassignment to a District Judge is required. Local Rule Appendix A(k)(3). 26 On September 26, 2014, Plaintiff filed a request for the court to protect him from 27 retaliation by correctional staff. (Doc. 11.) The court treats this request as a motion for 28 preliminary injunctive relief. 1 1 II. MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTIVE RELIEF 2 The purpose of a preliminary injunction is to preserve the status quo if the balance of 3 equities so heavily favors the moving party that justice requires the court to intervene to secure 4 the positions until the merits of the action are ultimately determined. University of Texas v. 5 Camenisch, 451 U.S. 390, 395 (1981). A preliminary injunction is available to a plaintiff who 6 Ademonstrates either (1) a combination of probable success and the possibility of irreparable 7 harm, or (2) that serious questions are raised and the balance of hardship tips in its favor.@ 8 Arcamuzi v. Continental Air Lines, Inc., 819 F. 2d 935, 937 (9th Cir. 1987). Under either 9 approach the plaintiff Amust demonstrate a significant threat of irreparable injury.@ Id. Also, an 10 injunction should not issue if the plaintiff Ashows no chance of success on the merits.@ Id. At a 11 bare minimum, the plaintiff Amust demonstrate a fair chance of success of the merits, or 12 questions serious enough to require litigation.@ Id. 13 Federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction, and as a preliminary matter, the court 14 must have before it an actual case or controversy. City of Los Angeles v. Lyons, 461 U.S. 95, 15 102, 103 S.Ct. 1660, 1665 (1983); Valley Forge Christian Coll. v. Ams. United for Separation 16 of Church and State, Inc., 454 U.S. 464, 471, 102 S.Ct. 752, 757-58 (1982); Jones v. City of 17 Los Angeles, 444 F.3d 1118, 1126 (9th Cir. 2006). If the court does not have an actual case or 18 controversy before it, it has no power to hear the matter in question. Id. Thus, A[a] federal 19 court may issue an injunction [only] if it has personal jurisdiction over the parties and subject 20 matter jurisdiction over the claim; it may not attempt to determine the rights of persons not 21 before the court.@ Zepeda v. United States Immigration Service, 753 F.2d 719, 727 (9th Cir. 22 1985). 23 Plaintiff has requested the court to protect him from retaliation by prison staff. A court 24 order protecting Plaintiff from retaliation would not remedy any of the claims upon which this 25 action proceeds. This action is proceeding against defendant Lopez for use of excessive force 26 against Plaintiff, based on an incident occurring on September 20, 2013, before Plaintiff filed 27 this action in January 2014. Plaintiff now seeks a court order protecting him from present and 28 future actions. Because such an order would not remedy any of the claims upon which this 2 1 action proceeds, the Court lacks jurisdiction to issue the order sought by Plaintiff, and 2 Plaintiff=s motion must be denied. 3 III. 4 5 CONCLUSION Based on the foregoing, it is HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiff’s motion for preliminary injunctive relief, filed on September 15, 2014, is DENIED. 6 7 8 9 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: September 29, 2014 /s/ Gary S. Austin UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3

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