Osborne v. Vasquez et al

Filing 29

RULING denying 23 Motion to Appoint Counsel with out prejudice ; denying as moot 26 Motion for Judicial Notice. Signed by Judge Janet C. Hall on 8/21/2012. (Payton, R.)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT DISTRICT OF CONNECTICUT LORENZO OSBORNE, Plaintiff, v. CARLOS VASQUEZ, et al., Defendants. : : : : : : : PRISONER CASE NO. 3:12-cv-213 (JCH) AUGUST 21, 2012 RULING ON PLAINTIFF’S MOTIONS FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL (Doc. No. 23) AND JUDICIAL NOTICE (Doc. No. 26) The plaintiff first renews his request for appointment of pro bono counsel. When deciding whether to appoint counsel, the district court must “determine whether the indigent’s position seems likely to be of substance.” Hodge v. Police Officers, 802 F.2d 58, 61 (2d Cir. 1986), cert. denied, 502 U.S. 996 (1991). In Cooper v. Sargenti, 877 F. 2d 170 (2d Cir. 1989), the Second Circuit cautioned the district courts against the “routine appointment of counsel” and reiterated the importance of requiring an indigent to “pass the test of likely merit.” Id. at 173-74. The court explained that, “even where the claim is not frivolous, counsel is often unwarranted where the indigent’s chances of success are extremely slim.” Id. at 171. The current record consists only of the Complaint and Answer. At this time, the court cannot conclude that the Complaint passes the test of likely merit. Accordingly, the plaintiff’s Motion (Doc. No. 23) is DENIED without prejudice. The plaintiff may file another motion for appointment at a later stage of litigation. The plaintiff also has filed a Motion in which he asks the court to note that the defendants failed to file an answer. Counsel has appeared for all defendants and the Answer was filed the same day the court received the plaintiff’s Motion. Accordingly, the Motion (Doc. No. 26) is DENIED as moot. SO ORDERED. Dated this 21st day of August 2012, at Bridgeport, Connecticut. /s/ Janet C. Hall Janet C. Hall United States District Judge 2

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