(PC) Garland v. Eldridge et al

Filing 21

ORDER signed by Magistrate Judge Jeremy D. Peterson on 4/26/2021 DENYING without prejudice plaintiff's 20 motion to appoint counsel. (Yin, K)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 12 ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF’S MOTION TO APPOINT COUNSEL Plaintiff, 13 14 Case No. 2:20-cv-01061-JAM-JDP (PC) SHAUN DARNELL GARLAND, v. ECF No. 20 LAURA ELDRIDGE, et al., 15 Defendants. 16 Plaintiff is a state prisoner proceeding without counsel in this civil rights action brought 17 18 under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He has filed a motion requesting the appointment of counsel. ECF No. 19 20. 20 Plaintiff does not have a constitutional right to appointed counsel in this action, see Rand 21 v. Rowland, 113 F.3d 1520, 1525 (9th Cir. 1997), and the court lacks the authority to require an 22 attorney to represent plaintiff. See Mallard v. U.S. District Court for the Southern District of 23 Iowa, 490 U.S. 296, 298 (1989). The court may request the voluntary assistance of counsel. See 24 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1) (“The court may request an attorney to represent any person unable to 25 afford counsel”); Rand, 113 F.3d at 1525. However, without a means to compensate counsel, the 26 court will seek volunteer counsel only in exceptional circumstances. In determining whether such 27 circumstances exist, “the district court must evaluate both the likelihood of success on the merits 28 1 1 [and] the ability of the [plaintiff] to articulate his claims pro se in light of the complexity of the 2 legal issues involved.” Rand, 113 F.3d at 1525 (internal quotation marks and citations omitted). 3 The court cannot conclude that exceptional circumstances requiring the appointment of 4 counsel are present here. The allegations in the complaint are not exceptionally complicated. 5 Further, plaintiff has not demonstrated that he is likely to succeed on the merits. For these 6 reasons, plaintiff’s motion to appoint counsel, ECF No. 20, is denied without prejudice. 7 The court may revisit this issue at a later stage of the proceedings if the interests of justice 8 so require. If plaintiff later renews his request for counsel, he should provide a detailed 9 explanation of the circumstances that he believes justify appointment of counsel in this case. 10 11 IT IS SO ORDERED. 12 Dated: April 26, 2021 13 JEREMY D. PETERSON UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2

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