Wilson v. Superior Court of California, Tuolumne County

Filing 11

ORDER Denying Petitioner's Motion for Reconsideration and/or Request for Issuance of a Writ of Quo Warranto 10 , signed by District Judge Lawrence J. O'Neill on 2/25/15. (Verduzco, M)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 8 9 10 11 BARRY FRANK WILSON, 12 13 Petitioner, v. 14 SUPERIOR COURT OF CALIFORNIA, 15 Respondent. ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) Case No.: 1:14-cv-01446-LJO-JLT ORDER DENYING PETITIONER’S MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION AND/OR REQUEST FOR ISSUANCE OF A WRIT OF QUO WARRANTO (Doc. 10) 16 17 18 19 Petitioner is a state prisoner proceeding in propria persona with a petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254. PROCEDURAL HISTORY 20 The instant petition was filed on September 12, 2014, challenging proceedings against him in 21 the state court for violations of the California’s Vehicle Code. (Doc. 1). On September 30, 2014, the 22 Court issued an Order to Show Cause why the petition should not be dismissed as completely 23 unexhausted. (Doc. 4). On October 28, 2014, Petitioner filed a response in which he argued that the 24 only entity with jurisdiction over him was God, but otherwise failing to address exhaustion. (Doc. 5). 25 On November 10, 2014, the Magistrate Judge entered Findings and Recommendations to dismiss the 26 petition as unexhausted. (Doc. 6). Over Petitioner’s objections, on December 10, 2014, this Court 27 adopted those Findings and Recommendations, entered judgment against Petitioner, and ordered the 28 file closed. (Docs. 8; 9). On February 11, 2015, Petitioner filed the instant motion, which is styled as 1 1 a request for issuance of a writ of quo warranto, arguing in essence that the state court lacks 2 jurisdiction over Petitioner to prosecute purported violations of the California’s Vehicle Code. (Doc. 3 10). DISCUSSION 4 5 A. Writs of Quo Warranto 6 Petitioner lacks standing to proceed with a request for issuance of a writ of quo warranto in this 7 Court. “Quo warranto is an ancient writ used by the King of England to determine if an individual's 8 claim to an office or franchise is well-founded. If the individual is found to be in unlawful possession 9 of the office, the individual is ousted.” Jesinger v. Nev. Fed. Credit Union, 24 F.3d 1127, 1131 (9th 10 Cir.1994) (citations omitted). It is a right of action “inherently in the Government ...” Territory of 11 Neb. v. Lockwood, 70 U.S. 236, 240 (1865). Because “[i]t appears from case law that in federal court, 12 the writ may be sought only by the United States, and not by private individuals,” Petitioner does not 13 have standing to bring a writ of quo warranto under federal law and therefore has not asserted a proper 14 basis for federal jurisdiction over his quo warranto claim. Allah v. Robinson, 2007 WL 2220258, at 15 *2 (W.D.Wash. July 31, 2007) (citing Johnson v. Manhattan Ry. Co., 289 U.S. 479, 502 16 (1933))(emphasis supplied); see also United States v. Machado, 306 F.Supp. 995, 1000 17 (N.D.Cal.1969); Bhambra v. County of Nevada, 2010 WL 3258836, at *3 (E.D. Cal. Aug. 16, 2010). 18 Moreover, as mentioned, such writs are properly brought only in connection with proceedings 19 over an individual’s right to hold an office or position. Johnson, 289 U.S. at 502; Newman v. Frizell, 20 238 U.S. 537 (1915); Barany v. Butler, 670 F.2d 726, 735 (7th Cir. 1982); Cizek v. Davis, 2010 WL 21 5437286, *3 (M.D. Penn. Nov. 29, 2010). Since Petitioner is not challenging the state judges’ right to 22 hold their offices as Superior Court judges, but only their statutory and constitutional authority to 23 preside over proceedings brought pursuant to California’s Vehicle Code, a writ of quo warrant is 24 inappropriate. 25 B. Motion For Reconsideration 26 Liberally construing Petitioner’s motion as a motion for reconsideration pursuant to Rule 27 60(b), the Court will deny that motion. Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b) governs the 28 reconsideration of final orders of the district court. Rule 60(b) permits a district court to relieve a 2 1 party from a final order or judgment on grounds of: “(1) mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable 2 neglect; (2) newly discovered evidence . . .; (3) fraud . . . of an adverse party; (4) the judgment is void; 3 (5) the judgment has been satisfied . . . or (6) any other reason justifying relief from the operation of 4 the judgment.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b). A motion under Rule 60(b) must be made within a reasonable 5 time, in any event “not more than one year after the judgment, order, or proceeding was entered or 6 taken.” Id. 7 Moreover, when filing a motion for reconsideration, Local Rule 230(j) requires a party to show 8 the “new or different facts or circumstances claimed to exist which did not exist or were not shown 9 upon such prior motion, or what other grounds exist for the motion.” Motions to reconsider are 10 committed to the discretion of the trial court. Combs v. Nick Garin Trucking, 825 F.2d 437, 441 11 (D.C.Cir. 1987); Rodgers v. Watt, 722 F.2d 456, 460 (9th Cir. 1983) (en banc). To succeed, a party 12 must set forth facts or law of a strongly convincing nature to induce the court to reverse its prior 13 decision. See, e.g., Kern-Tulare Water Dist. v. City of Bakersfield, 634 F.Supp. 656, 665 (E.D.Cal. 14 1986), aff’d in part and rev’d in part on other grounds, 828 F.2d 514 (9th Cir. 1987). 15 Here, Petitioner failed to meet any of the requirements for granting a motion for 16 reconsideration: He has not shown “mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect;” he has not 17 shown the existence of either newly discovered evidence or fraud; he has not established that the 18 judgment is either void or satisfied; and, finally, Petitioner has not presented any other reasons 19 justifying relief from judgment. Moreover, pursuant to the Court’s Local Rules, Petitioner has not 20 shown “new or different facts or circumstances claimed to exist which did not exist or were not shown 21 upon such prior motion, or what other grounds exist for the motion.” Local Rule 230(j). (Emphasis 22 supplied). 23 Indeed, many of the contentions Petitioner raises in the instant motion are either similar to or 24 identical to the issues raised in the original petition and in his objections to the Magistrate Judge’s 25 Findings and Recommendations. In the order adopting the Findings and Recommendations, the Court 26 expressly considered those points and rejected them. (Doc. 8). Moreover, Petitioner does not allege 27 or establish that the contentions contained in the instant motion constitute “newly discovered 28 evidence” under Rule 60(b) that would entitle him to reconsideration or relief from judgment. 3 1 2 In sum, Petitioner has provided no evidence or circumstances that would satisfy any of the requirements of Rule 60(b), and therefore his motion for reconsideration must be denied. ORDER 3 4 Accordingly, it is HEREBY ORDERED that Petitioner’s motion for writ of quo warranto 5 (Doc. 10), is DENIED. 6 IT IS SO ORDERED. 7 8 Dated: /s/ Lawrence J. O’Neill February 25, 2015 UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 4

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