Maraglino v. Espinosa et al
ORDER DENYING 3 Motion to Appoint Counsel signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara A. McAuliffe on 11/20/2017. (Sant Agata, S)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
DOROTHY GRACE MARIE
Case No. 1:17-cv-01535-BAM (PC)
ORDER DENYING MOTION TO APPOINT
(ECF No. 3)
J. ESPINOSA, et al.,
Plaintiff Dorothy Grace Marie Maraglino (“Plaintiff”) is a state prisoner proceeding pro se
in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Currently before the Court is Plaintiff’s
motion to appoint counsel, filed November 17, 2017. (ECF No. 3.)
Plaintiff states that she is unable to afford counsel. Plaintiff further states that her
imprisonment will greatly limit her ability to litigate, the issues in this case are complex and will
require significant research and investigation, she has limited access to the law library, and
limited knowledge of the law. Plaintiff argues that counsel in this case would better enable
Plaintiff to present evidence and cross examine witnesses at trial. (Id.)
Plaintiff does not have a constitutional right to appointed counsel in this action, Rand v.
Rowland, 113 F.3d 1520, 1525 (9th Cir. 1997), rev’d in part on other grounds, 154 F.3d 952, 954
n.1 (9th Cir. 1998), and the court cannot require an attorney to represent plaintiff pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1). Mallard v. U.S. Dist. Court for the S. Dist. of Iowa, 490 U.S. 296, 298
(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
“exceptional circumstances exist, a district court must evaluate both the likelihood of success on
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).
The Court has considered Plaintiff’s motion for the appointment of counsel, but does not
find the required exceptional circumstances. Even if it is assumed that Plaintiff is not well versed
in the law and that she has made serious allegations which, if proved, would entitle her to relief,
his case is not exceptional. This Court is faced with similar cases filed by prisoners proceeding
pro se and in forma pauperis almost daily. These prisoners also must conduct legal research and
prosecute claims without the assistance of counsel.
Furthermore, at this stage in the proceedings, the Court cannot make a determination that
Plaintiff is likely to succeed on the merits. Plaintiff complaint has not been screened, and thus the
case does not yet proceed on any cognizable claims. Also, based on a review of the limited record
in this case, the Court does not find that Plaintiff cannot adequately articulate her claims.
For the foregoing reasons, Plaintiff’s motion to appoint counsel (ECF No. 3) is DENIED,
IT IS SO ORDERED.
November 20, 2017
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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