Osborne v. Vasquez et al
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.)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF CONNECTICUT
CARLOS VASQUEZ, et al.,
PRISONER CASE NO.
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.
Dated this 21st day of August 2012, at Bridgeport, Connecticut.
/s/ Janet C. Hall
Janet C. Hall
United States District Judge
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