Sullivan v. Hart et al
Judge Denise J. Casper: ORDER entered denying as moot 3 Emergency Motion; denying as moot 6 Emergency Motion to reintroduce head injury; denying 2 Motion for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) , this action is DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. [Copy of order sent to plaintiff by first-class mail on 8/7/2017 to address on the docket: Michael Sullivan, 10 Trimount Ave, Waltham, MA 02451.] (PSSA, 3)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF MASSACHUSETTS
D.M. HART, et al.,
Civil Action No. 17-11438-DJC
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
August 7, 2017
Pro se litigant Michael Sullivan (“Sullivan”) has filed a civil complaint, D. 1, in which he
alleges that Waltham police officers failed to investigate his reports of criminal activity. For the
reasons set forth below, the Court will order that this case be DISMISSED.
Although Sullivan alleges numerous misdeeds by several government officials and
agencies, the crux of his complaint and basis for seeking relief is as follows. According to his
complaint, on August 8, 2014, Sullivan filed a complaint with Waltham Police Officer DM Hart
(“Officer Hart”), alleging that the United States was subjecting him to unlawful surveillance.
More specifically, Sullivan claims that he asked Officer Hart for the Waltham Police Department
“to investigate the United States Air Force hovering a jet over [his] house in Waltham for 3-5
minutes on two different occasions at 3:00 am [in the] morning.” Compl. ¶ 5.
reported to Officer Hart that “the FBI contacted everybody [he] ever knew to tell them what to
say to [him]” and conducted constant physiological war on him. Id. ¶ 8.
Sullivan alleges that, instead of investigating his complaint, Officer Hart wrote a police
report in which she describes the plaintiff’s mental state, characterizing him as being in a “fragile
state” and demonstrating “significantly paranoid behavior.” Id. ¶ 10. Sullivan takes issue with
Officer Hart’s evaluation of his mental health, and worries that the report “could be used against
[him] if [he has] another encounter with local police and then the FBI can force them to write
another complaint implying that [he is] mentally imbalance to have [him] institutionalized.” Id.
¶ 11. The report was purportedly reviewed by Officer A. Mele and approved by Officer J.
Giugno, both of the Waltham Police Department.
Sullivan concludes, “The Police did not investigate my complaint against the FBI, instead
they assisted the FBI by writing a false police report inferring I had mental health issues.” Id.
¶ 2. He claims that Officers Hart, Mele and Giulgno, the defendants in this action, violated his
rights under 42 U.S.C. §§ 1981, 1983, and 1986, as well as his Eighth Amendment right to be
free from cruel and unusual punishment.
With the complaint, Sullivan filed an emergency motion, D. 3, in which he asks that the
Court issue a subpoena as to Officer Hart, who, according to the plaintiff, will testify under oath
that the FBI forced her to falsify the report she wrote about Sullivan. In a second emergency
motion, D. 6, Sullivan asks that, in light of a head injury he suffered, the Court appoint counsel
for him. He also reiterates his belief that Officer Hart will testify that the FBI forced her to write
a false report. Sullivan also filed a motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis.
Motion for Leave to Proceed in Forma Pauperis
Upon review of Sullivan’s motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis, the Court
concludes that he has adequately demonstrated his inability to pay the $400 filing fee.
Accordingly, the motion will be GRANTED.
Screening of the Complaint
Because Sullivan is proceeding in forma pauperis, the complaint is subject to screening
under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). This statute authorizes federal courts to dismiss actions in which a
plaintiff seeks to proceed without prepayment of fees if the action is malicious, frivolous, fails to
state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief against a defendant who
is immune from such relief. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). In conducting this review, the Court
liberally construes the plaintiff’s complaint because he is proceeding pro se. See Haines v.
Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520-21 (1972).
Here, Sullivan has failed to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. There is no
statutory, common law, or constitutional right to the investigation of another. See Mitchell v.
McNeil, 487 F.3d 374, 378 (6th Cir. 2007); cf. Linda R.S. v. Richard D., 410 U.S. 614, 619
(1973) (“[A] private citizen lacks a judicially cognizable interest in the prosecution or
nonprosecution of another”). Moreover, the mere existence of an allegedly false police report
does not deprive a person of a constitutional right, and the possibility that the police report might
be used to institutionalize Sullivan is too speculative to raise concerns of a constitutional
dimension. See Landrigan v. City of Warwick, 628 F.2d 736, 744-45 (1st Cir. 1980).
Where a plaintiff, even a pro se plaintiff, has failed to state a claim and it appearls futile
to amend as to such claim, then a dismissal sua sponte is appropriate. Gonzalez-Gonzalez v.
United States, 257 F.3d 31, 36-37 (1st Cir. 2001). Accordingly, the Court will dismiss this
action without prejudice.
In light of the dismissal of this action, the emergency motions, D. 3, 6, shall be denied as
For the foregoing reasons, the Court rules as follows:
The motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis, D. 2, is GRANTED;
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii), this action is DISMISSED WITHOUT
PREJUDICE for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted; and
The emergency motions, D. 3, 6, are DENIED AS MOOT.
/s/ Denise J. Casper
United States District Judge
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