(PC) Martinez v. Navarro, et al.
ORDER DENYING 32 Motion to Appoint Counsel, signed by Magistrate Judge Gary S. Austin on 02/18/2021. (Martin-Gill, S)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
1:19-cv-00378 NONE-GSA (PC)
JOSE ANTONIO RAMIREZ,
ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR
APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL
M. NAVARRO, et al.,
On February 8, 2021, plaintiff filed a 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
exceptional 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.
In the present case, plaintiff argues that it will be difficult for him to investigate the facts
of this case and present the case. He also argues that he suffers from mental health issues. These
conditions alone do not make plaintiff’s case exceptional. While the Court has found that
“Plaintiff states cognizable claims against defendants C/O E. Mares, Sergeant M. Navarro, C/O
Cruz, and C/O Navarro for use of excessive force in violation of the Eighth Amendment,” this
finding is not a determination that plaintiff is likely to succeed on the merits. (ECF No. 17 at 6:5-
7.) Plaintiff’s excessive force claims are not complex, and based on a review of the record in this
case, plaintiff can adequately articulate his claims. Thus, the Court does not find the required
exceptional circumstances, and plaintiff’s motion shall be denied without prejudice to renewal of
the motion at a later stage of the proceedings.
For the foregoing reasons, plaintiff’s motion for the appointment of counsel is HEREBY
DENIED, without prejudice.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
February 18, 2021
/s/ Gary S. Austin
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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