Moon v. Federal Bureau of Prisons
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER: IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff's motion to proceed in forma pauperis [ECF No. 2] is GRANTED. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that this action is DISMISSED without prejudice. An Order of Dismissal will be filed separately. Signed by District Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh, Jr on 11/24/2015. (JMC)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
DARNELL WESLEY MOON,
FEDERAL BUREAU OF
No. 1:15CV197 ACL
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Plaintiff seeks leave to proceed in forma pauperis in this civil action under the Freedom
of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. § 552 (“FOIA”). The motion is granted.
Standard of Review
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e), the Court is required to dismiss a complaint filed in forma
pauperis if it is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.
To state a claim for relief under § 1983, a complaint must plead more than “legal conclusions”
and “[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action [that are] supported by mere
conclusory statements.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).
A plaintiff must
demonstrate a plausible claim for relief, which is more than a “mere possibility of misconduct.”
Id. at 679. “A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows
the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct
alleged.” Id. at 678. Determining whether a complaint states a plausible claim for relief [is] a
context-specific task that requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial experience and
common sense. Id. at 679.
Plaintiff brings this action for judicial review of a request for documents under FOIA. He
says that he requested a copy of a file relating to an investigation at USP Terre Haute that was
conducted while he was imprisoned there.
Plaintiff alleges that the FBI acknowledged receipt of his request and assigned it a 2015
claim number. He does not state that the FBI provided him with a decision, and he does not state
whether he exhausted administrative remedies from a denial of his request.
Before bringing a FOIA claim in federal court, a plaintiff must have exhausted the
available administrative remedies. E.g., Brumley v. U.S. Dept. of Labor, 767 F.2d 444, 445 (8th
Cir. 1985). Additionally, to properly plead a case under FOIA, a plaintiff must allege in his
complaint that “he exhausted his remedies under FOIA.” Scherer v. Balkema, 840 F.2d 437,
443 (7th Cir. 1988). “In the absence of such an allegation, he states no claim upon which relief
can be granted.” Id. Because he has not alleged that he has exhausted available administrative
remedies, the complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. As a result, this
action is dismissed under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e).
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff's motion to proceed in forma pauperis [ECF
No. 2] is GRANTED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that this action is DISMISSED without prejudice.
An Order of Dismissal will be filed separately.
Dated this 24th day of November, 2015.
STEPHEN N. LIMBAUGH, JR.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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