Davis v. Teeny et al

Filing 9

ORDER DISMISSING CASE. Signed by Judge James Donato on 2/8/18. (lrcS, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 2/8/2018)

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1 2 3 4 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 5 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 6 7 JOHN LINBIRD DAVIS, Plaintiff, 8 9 10 ORDER OF DISMISSAL v. Re: Dkt. No. 7 ROBERT TEENY, et al., Defendants. 11 United States District Court Northern District of California Case No. 17-cv-03737-JD 12 13 Plaintiff, a detainee, has filed a pro se civil rights complaint pursuant to Bivens v. Six 14 Unknown Named Agents, 403 U.S. 388 (1971). The original complaint was dismissed with leave 15 to amend. Plaintiff has not filed an amended complaint but he did file a short motion for summary 16 judgment. The Court will construe the motion for summary judgment as an amended complaint 17 and review the allegations. DISCUSSION 18 19 STANDARD OF REVIEW 20 Federal courts must engage in a preliminary screening of cases in which prisoners seek 21 redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity. 28 U.S.C. 22 § 1915A(a). In its review, the Court must identify any cognizable claims, and dismiss any claims 23 which are frivolous, malicious, fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seek 24 monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. Id. at 1915A(b)(1),(2). Pro se 25 pleadings must be liberally construed. Balistreri v. Pacifica Police Dep’t, 901 F.2d 696, 699 (9th 26 Cir. 1990). 27 28 Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2) requires only “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Although a complaint “does not need detailed 1 factual allegations, . . . a plaintiff’s obligation to provide the ‘grounds’ of his ‘entitle[ment] to 2 relief’ requires more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a 3 cause of action will not do. . . . Factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above 4 the speculative level.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (citations 5 omitted). A complaint must proffer “enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its 6 face.” Id. at 570. The United States Supreme Court has explained the “plausible on its face” 7 standard of Twombly: “While legal conclusions can provide the framework of a complaint, they 8 must be supported by factual allegations. When there are well-pleaded factual allegations, a court 9 should assume their veracity and then determine whether they plausibly give rise to an entitlement 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 to relief.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 679 (2009). To state a private cause of action under Bivens, and its progeny, a plaintiff must allege: (1) 12 that a right secured by the Constitution of the United States was violated, and (2) that the alleged 13 deprivation was committed by a federal actor. Van Strum v. Lawn, 940 F.2d 406, 409 (9th Cir. 14 1991) (§ 1983 and Bivens actions are identical save for the replacement of a state actor under § 15 1983 by a federal actor under Bivens). 16 LEGAL CLAIMS 17 Plaintiff alleges that two federal probation officers manipulated his paperwork which 18 resulted in him staying on probation for an extra four years. He seeks money damages. The Ninth 19 Circuit has held that probation officers possess an absolute judicial immunity from damage suits 20 under § 1983 for official functions bearing a close association to the judicial process. Demoran v. 21 Witt, 781 F.2d 155, 156-58 (9th Cir. 1985). For example, probation officers receive judicial 22 immunity for their role in preparing presentence reports because, in preparing these reports, 23 probation officers act as “an arm of the sentencing judge;” engage in “impartial fact-gathering for 24 the sentencing judge”, the results of which can be considered in aggravation or mitigation of a 25 punishment; and serve a function “integral to the independent judicial process.” See id. 26 In the original complaint plaintiff stated that defendants manipulated the paperwork, but he 27 failed to provide any other information regarding how the defendants’ actions resulted in him 28 staying on probation for an extra four years. Plaintiff’s brief and conclusory allegations were 2 1 insufficient to state a claim pursuant to Iqbal. Plaintiff had not shown that defendants acted 2 outside of their official functions to not be entitled to immunity. The complaint was dismissed 3 with leave to amend to provide more information. 4 Plaintiff has not provided additional information in the amended complaint. As noted in 5 the prior screening order, it appears that plaintiff is referring to United States v. Davis, No. 00-cv- 6 0450-MMC. The record reflects that on February 27, 2002, plaintiff was sentenced to 96 months 7 in custody and 3 years supervised release. Docket No. 47. The record also reflects that there were 8 several arrest warrants issued for plaintiff once he was on supervised release and multiple 9 revocations of supervised release. Docket No. 95. Plaintiff admitted to several violations and was sentenced to time served and additional supervised release. Plaintiff has failed to present 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 10 sufficient allegations in the amended complaint demonstrating that defendants are not entitled to 12 immunity. This action is dismissed for failure to state a claim. Because further amendment would 13 be futile, this action is dismissed with prejudice. CONCLUSION 14 15 16 1. For reasons set forth above this action DISMISSED with prejudice. Plaintiff’s premature motion for summary judgment (Docket No. 7) is DENIED. 17 2. 18 IT IS SO ORDERED. 19 The Clerk shall close this action and terminate all pending motions. Dated: February 8, 2018 20 21 JAMES DONATO United States District Judge 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3 1 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 2 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 3 4 JOHN LINBIRD DAVIS, Case No. 17-cv-03737-JD Plaintiff, 5 v. CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE 6 7 ROBERT TEENY, et al., Defendants. 8 9 10 I, the undersigned, hereby certify that I am an employee in the Office of the Clerk, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California. United States District Court Northern District of California 11 12 13 14 15 That on February 8, 2018, I SERVED a true and correct copy(ies) of the attached, by placing said copy(ies) in a postage paid envelope addressed to the person(s) hereinafter listed, by depositing said envelope in the U.S. Mail, or by placing said copy(ies) into an inter-office delivery receptacle located in the Clerk's office. 16 17 18 John Linbird Davis #16664426 850 Bryant Street San Francisco, CA 94103 19 20 21 Dated: February 8, 2018 22 23 Susan Y. Soong Clerk, United States District Court 24 25 26 27 By:________________________ LISA R. CLARK, Deputy Clerk to the Honorable JAMES DONATO 28 4

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