Pippin v. Fox

Filing 17

ORDER Granting Plaintiff's Motion for Extension of Time and Denying Plaintiff's Request for Appointment of Counsel by Chief Magistrate Judge Elizabeth D. Laporte. (Attachments: # 1 Certificate of Service)(shyS, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 7/9/2014)

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1 2 3 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 4 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 5 6 JACOB JOHN PIPPIN, Plaintiff, 7 8 9 ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF’S MOTION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME; DENYING REQUEST FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL v. DETECTIVE STEVEN FOX, Defendant. / (Docket No. 16.) 11 For the Northern District of California United States District Court 10 No. C 13-4552 EDL (PR) Plaintiff proceeds with a pro se civil rights complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. 12 Defendant has filed a motion to dismiss. Plaintiff has filed a request for a continuance and 13 for an appointment of counsel. 14 Plaintiff’s request for a continuance is construed as a motion for an extension of time 15 to file an opposition to Defendant’s motion to dismiss. So construed, Plaintiff’s motion is 16 GRANTED. Plaintiff’s opposition is due no later than twenty-eight days from the filing 17 date of this order. Defendant shall file a reply fourteen days thereafter. 18 In Plaintiff’s request for an appointment of counsel, Plaintiff expresses concern 19 regarding his representation in any Court hearings. As the Court stated in its April 14, 20 2014, order of service, no hearings will be held unless and until the Court so orders at a 21 later date. Moreover, there is no constitutional right to counsel in a civil case, Lassiter v. 22 Dep't of Social Services, 452 U.S. 18, 25 (1981), and although district courts may "request" 23 that counsel represent a litigant who is proceeding in forma pauperis, as Plaintiff is here, 24 see 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1), that does not give the courts the power to make "coercive 25 appointments of counsel." Mallard v. United States Dist. Court, 490 U.S. 296, 310 (1989). 26 The Ninth Circuit has held that a district court may ask counsel to represent an 27 indigent litigant only in "exceptional circumstances," the determination of which requires an 28 evaluation of both (1) the likelihood of success on the merits and (2) the ability of the 1 plaintiff to articulate his claims pro se in light of the complexity of the legal issues involved. 2 Terrell v. Brewer, 935 F.2d 1015, 1017 (9th Cir. 1991). Plaintiff appears able to present his 3 claims adequately, and the issues are not complex. Therefore, the motion to appoint 4 counsel is DENIED. 5 6 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: July 8 , 2014. ELIZABETH D. LAPORTE United States Chief Magistrate Judge 7 8 9 11 For the Northern District of California United States District Court 10 12 13 14 15 16 P:\PRO-SE\EDL\CR.13\Pippin4552eot.wpd 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 2

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