Garces v. Pickett et al

Filing 9

ORDER denying 3 Motion to Appoint Counsel signed by Magistrate Judge Allison Claire on 03/17/17. (Plummer, M)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 LUIS MANUEL GARCES, 12 Plaintiff, 13 14 15 v. No. 2:17-cv-0319 JAM AC P ORDER J. PICKETT, et al., Defendants. 16 17 Plaintiff, a state prisoner proceeding pro se, has requested appointment of counsel. ECF 18 No. 3. The United States Supreme Court has ruled that district courts lack authority to require 19 counsel to represent indigent prisoners in § 1983 cases. Mallard v. United States Dist. Court, 490 20 U.S. 296, 298 (1989). In certain exceptional circumstances, the district court may request the 21 voluntary assistance of counsel pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1). Terrell v. Brewer, 935 F.2d 22 1015, 1017 (9th Cir. 1991); Wood v. Housewright, 900 F.2d 1332, 1335-36 (9th Cir. 1990). 23 “When determining whether ‘exceptional circumstances’ exist, a court must consider ‘the 24 likelihood of success on the merits as well as the ability of the [plaintiff] to articulate his claims 25 pro se in light of the complexity of the legal issues involved.’” Palmer v. Valdez, 560 F.3d 965, 26 970 (9th Cir. 2009) (quoting Weygandt v. Look, 718 F.2d 952, 954 (9th Cir. 1983)). The burden 27 of demonstrating exceptional circumstances is on the plaintiff. Id. Circumstances common to 28 most prisoners, such as lack of legal education and limited law library access, do not establish 1 1 exceptional circumstances that would warrant a request for voluntary assistance of counsel. 2 In his request, plaintiff asserts that his imprisonment will limit his ability to litigate, that 3 the issues are complex, and that he has limited access to the library and knowledge of the law. 4 ECF No. 3. These are circumstances are common to most prisoners. Moreover, the court has yet 5 to screen the complaint, so it is not clear whether plaintiff has any likelihood of success on the 6 merits. For these reasons, the court does not find the required exceptional circumstances at this 7 time. 8 9 10 In accordance with the above, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff’s motion for the appointment of counsel (ECF No. 3) is denied. DATED: March 17, 2017 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2

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