Robertson (ID 76205) v. Jessup
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER ENTERED: This matter is dismissed without prejudice for failure to state a claim on which relief may be granted. Signed by U.S. Senior District Judge Sam A. Crow on 07/26/17. Mailed to pro se party Joshua James Robertson by regular mail. (smnd)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF KANSAS
JOSHUA JAMES ROBERTSON,
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is a civil rights action filed pursuant to 42
U.S.C. § 1983.
By order of July 7, 2017, U.S. Magistrate Judge
undersigned why this matter should not be dismissed for failure
to state a claim upon which relief may be granted.
The order identified two grounds for dismissal: first, the
Court found that the defendant, Janell Jessup, is entitled to
absolute quasi-judicial immunity; and second, the Court found
that Plaintiff had not alleged a deliberate or intentional act
on Defendant’s part as required to state a claim for a violation
of his constitutional rights.
pleading, Plaintiff objects to the finding that Defendant has
absolute quasi-judicial immunity in this situation.
that Defendant had a duty to mail him notice of the entry of
Therefore, he argues, she is not entitled to quasi-
While the mailing of notice may not involve the exercise of
judgment, it is integrally related to the judicial process.
Tenth Circuit has favorably cited cases finding immunity in more
egregious circumstances than those alleged here, on the basis
that the clerk’s actions were integrally related to the judicial
See Coleman v. Farnsworth, 90 F. App'x 313, 317 (10th
Cir. 2004) (finding court clerk who refused to comply with a
court order to issue a summons was protected by quasi-judicial
immunity), citing Smith v. Erickson, 884 F.2d 1108, 1111 (8th Cir.
integral part of the judicial process, so the clerk's delayed
filing of the complaint and lying about its whereabouts were
protected by judicial immunity); Mullis v. United States Bankr.
Ct., 828 F.2d 1385, 1390 (9th Cir. 1987) (determining bankruptcy
clerks enjoyed absolute quasi-judicial immunity for failing to
provide notice, accepting incomplete petition, and refusing to
accept an amended complaint, as their actions related to an
Green, 245 F. App’x 780, 783 (10th Cir. 2007).
Plaintiff argues causes the undersigned to disagree with Judge
Waxse’s conclusion that Defendant is immune from liability for
damages under § 1983.
Plaintiff spends much time arguing that his appeal in the
underlying state court lawsuit would not be frivolous.
inquiry is only relevant to the determination of actual injury
or prejudice as required to make out a First Amendment access to
the courts claim.
Plaintiff cites a Fifth Circuit case holding
that where prison officials’ failure to deliver a notice of
dismissal caused an inmate to miss the deadline to appeal, the
inmate suffers prejudice only where the underlying claims were
See Ruiz v. U.S., 160 F.3d 273, 275 (5th Cir.
However, this issue is not reached here because the Court
finds that Plaintiff has failed to state a claim on the ground
that he did not allege a deliberate deprivation of his rights on
As explained in the order to show cause,
merely negligent conduct cannot support a First Amendment denial
of access to the courts claim or a claim for violation of due
See Mills v. Connors, 319 F. App'x 747, 749 (10th
Cir. 2009), citing Simkins v. Bruce, 406 F.3d 1239, 1242 (10th
Corp., 429 U.S. 252, 265 (1977); Daniels v. Williams, 474 U.S.
327, 328 (1986).
Plaintiff’s only argument to counter this finding is that
the Court was “speculating” (Doc. #8, p. 3) when it stated that
“[a]t the most, his allegations show an inadvertent error or
This was not speculation but was based on the
allegations included in Plaintiff’s complaint.
On the other
hand, a finding that Defendant deliberately failed to provide
speculation; Plaintiff has not made that allegation let alone
provided any credible basis for reaching that conclusion.
For the reasons set forth, the Court concludes this matter
1915(e)(2)(B) because Plaintiff seeks monetary damages from a
defendant who is immune from such relief and because he fails to
state a claim on which relief may be granted.
without prejudice for failure to state a claim on which relief
may be granted.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
This 26th day of July, 2017, at Topeka, Kansas.
s/_Sam A. Crow_____
SAM A. CROW
U.S. Senior District Judge
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?