Jonathan v. Mnuchin

Filing 2

ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE. Written Show Cause Response due by 6/30/2017. Signed by Judge Sallie Kim on 5/31/2017. (Attachments: # 1 Certificate/Proof of Service)(afmS, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 5/31/2017)

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1 2 3 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 4 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 5 6 7 CHRISTOPHER JONATHAN, Plaintiff, 8 STEVEN TERNER MNUCHIN, United States District Court Northern District of California Regarding Docket No. 1 Defendant. 11 12 ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE v. 9 10 Case No. 17-mc-80054-SK On May 5, 2017, Plaintiff Christopher Jonathan, proceeding pro se1, filed a miscellaneous 13 matter entitled “Libel in Review – Garnishment in Admiralty Certificate of Exigent Circumstances.” 14 Plaintiff has not consented to the jurisdiction of a magistrate judge pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(c). 15 As set forth below, the basis for federal jurisdiction of this matter, as well as the action sought by 16 Plaintiff from the Court, are unclear. Therefore, Plaintiff is ordered to show cause in writing by no 17 later than June 30, 2017 setting forth: (1) the basis for asserting jurisdiction in the federal district 18 court; (2) the action sought from the district court; and (3) the legal basis for such action. Failure to 19 comply with this Order may result in a request for reassignment to a district court judge 20 accompanied by a report and recommendation that the action be dismissed. 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 Federal courts are under a duty to raise and decide issues of subject matter jurisdiction sua sponte any time it appears subject matter jurisdiction may be lacking or that the action is frivolous. Fed.R.Civ.P. 12; 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2); Steel Co. v. Citizens for a Better Environment, 523 U.S. 83, 94 (1998) (holding that when a court determines that it lacks subject matter jurisdiction its only remaining function is to declare the fact and dismiss the action). An action is frivolous where “it lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact.” Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). 1 Plaintiff files in his own name, but signs the document as “Christopher Jonathan – Trustee of the Resulting Trust.” Plaintiff must clarify his relationship to the trust and the role the trust plays in this matter. 1 If a matter fails to allege that a plaintiff’s constitutional or statutory rights have been 2 violated, and no basis exists for the exercise of federal subject matter jurisdiction, there is no 3 “arguable basis in law” under Neitzke and the court on its own initiative may decline to permit the 4 plaintiff to proceed and may dismiss the action under section 1915(d). Cato v. United States, 70 5 F.3d 1103, 1106 (9th Cir. 1995). Furthermore, where the filing is “wholly lacking merit, is ‘clearly 6 baseless,’ ‘fanciful,’ or ‘delusional’ it may be dismissed as frivolous.” Borhani v. The Whole 7 World, 2006 WL 1214861, at *1 (N.D. Cal. May 5, 2006) (quoting Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S. 8 25, 32 (1992)). The pleading filed by Plaintiff at Docket 1 is confusing. Plaintiff alleges that he received a 10 summons in the mail indicating that he is being sued in the California Superior Court. He appears 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 9 to question the authority of the state court and seeks to redact signatures of judges and to garnish 12 the salary of the Secretary of the United States Treasury. Attached to the pleading are a summons 13 issued against Chris Stevenson by the Solano County Superior Court and a complaint filed in that 14 court by Capital One Bank (USA), N.A. against the Chris Stevenson, among other documents. 15 Federal district courts are courts of original jurisdiction and lack subject matter jurisdiction 16 to review errors allegedly committed in state court. Rooker v. Fidelity Trust Co., 263 U.S. 413, 17 416 (1923); D.C. Ct. App. v. Feldman, 460 U.S. 462, 482 (1983). The Rooker-Feldman doctrine 18 provides that district courts lack jurisdiction to review the final determinations of state courts in 19 state court proceedings. See, e.g., Branson v. Nott, 62 F.3d 287, 291 (9th Cir. 1995). Thus, 20 Plaintiff may not seek review of the actions of the Solano County Superior Court from this Court. 21 The proper court to review of a final state court decision is the United States Supreme Court. 28 22 U.S.C. § 1257; Rooker, 263 U.S. at 416; Feldman, 460 U.S. at 476. 23 Further, Plaintiff, appearing pro se, appears to represent another individual, Chris 24 Stevenson. Unless Plaintiff is a licensed attorney, he is not permitted to enforce the rights of 25 another party. Therefore, Plaintiff may not bring claims on behalf of Chris Stevenson. 26 The Court advises Plaintiff that a Handbook for Pro Se Litigants contains helpful 27 information about proceeding without an attorney and is available through the Court’s website or 28 in the Legal Help Center. Plaintiff may call the Legal Help Center at 415-782-8982 or sign up on 2 1 the 15th Floor of the San Francisco Court House, Room 2796 or on the 4th Floor of the Oakland 2 Courthouse, Room 470S, for a free appointment with an attorney who may be able to provide 3 basic legal help, but not legal representation. 4 5 6 7 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: May 31, 2017 ______________________________________ SALLIE KIM United States Magistrate Judge 8 9 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3

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