(PS) Coleman v. County of Sacramento et al

Filing 12

ORDER signed by Chief District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller on 03/25/2024 DECLINING TO ADOPT 11 Findings and Recommendations. The matter is REFERRED back to the Magistrate Judge to consider whether Plaintiff has sufficiently alleged extrinsic fraud, and if not, whether it is possible that with additional factual allegations, Plaintiff could plead case that is not a De Facto Appeal. (Nair, C)

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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 JACQUELINE COLEMAN, 12 13 14 15 No. 2:23-cv-02677-KJM-CKD Plaintiff, v. ORDER COUNTY OF SACRAMENTO, et al., Defendants. 16 17 18 On February 1, 2024, the magistrate judge filed findings and recommendations, which 19 were served on the parties, and which contained notice that any objections to the findings and 20 recommendations were to be filed within fourteen (14) days. That period having passed, plaintiff 21 has not objected to the findings and recommendations. 22 The court presumes that any findings of fact are correct. See Orand v. United States, 23 602 F.2d 207, 208 (9th Cir. 1979). The magistrate judge’s conclusions of law are reviewed 24 de novo. See Robbins v. Carey, 481 F.3d 1143, 1147 (9th Cir. 2007) (“[D]eterminations of law 25 by the magistrate judge are reviewed de novo by both the district court and [the appellate] court 26 . . . .”). Having reviewed the file, the court declines to adopt the findings and recommendations. 27 28 As the magistrate judge notes, a complaint is a de facto appeal barred by the RookerFeldman Doctrine when a plaintiff “asserts as a legal wrong an allegedly erroneous decision by a 1 1 state court, and seeks relief from a state court judgment based on that decision.” Noel v. Hall, 2 341 F.3d 1148, 1164 (9th Cir. 2003). However, if “a federal plaintiff asserts as a legal wrong an 3 allegedly illegal act or omission by an adverse party, Rooker–Feldman does not bar jurisdiction.” 4 Id. A “corollary” to this distinction is the rule of “extrinsic fraud.” Benavidez v. County of San 5 Diego, 993 F.3d 1134, 1143 (9th Cir. 2021). “Extrinsic fraud is conduct which prevents a party 6 from presenting his claim in court.” Kougasian v. TMSL, Inc., 359 F.3d 1136, 1140 (9th Cir. 7 2004) (quoting Wood v. McEwen, 644 F.2d 797, 801 (9th Cir. 1981)). 8 9 Here, plaintiff alleges defendants defrauded the state court and asserts the allegedly illegal acts and omissions by defendants as a legal wrong. See, e.g., Compl. ¶¶ 2–4, 26, 58, 67, 10 75. The matter is referred back to the magistrate judge to consider whether plaintiff has 11 sufficiently alleged extrinsic fraud, and if not, whether it is possible that with additional factual 12 allegations, plaintiff could plead case that is not a de facto appeal. 13 14 IT IS SO ORDERED. DATED: March 25, 2024. 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2

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