Harris v. Gardner et al

Filing 4

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER - IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiffs motion to proceed in forma pauperis [Doc. # 2 ] is GRANTED. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the plaintiff shall pay an initial filing fee of $1.55 within thirty (30) days of the date of this Order. Plaintiff is instructed to make his remittance payable to Clerk, United States District Court, and to include upon it: (1) his name; (2) his prison registration number; (3) the case number; and (4) that the remittance is for an original proce eding. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerk shall not issue process or cause process to issue upon the complaint because the complaint is legally frivolous or fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, or both. An Order of Dismissal will accompany this Memorandum and Order. Signed by Honorable Charles A. Shaw on 6/15/09. (KJF, )

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI EASTERN DIVISION FRANK D. HARRIS, Plaintiff, v. KIMBERLY M. GARDNER, et al., Defendants. ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) No. 4:09-CV-917 MLM MEMORANDUM AND ORDER This matter is before the Court upon the motion of Frank Harris (registration no. 11095), an inmate at St. Louis City Justice Center, for leave to commence this action without payment of the required filing fee [Doc. #2]. For the reasons stated below, the Court finds that plaintiff does not have sufficient funds to pay the entire filing fee and will assess an initial partial filing fee of $1.55. See 28 U.S.C. 1915(b)(1). Furthermore, based upon a review of the complaint, the Court finds that the complaint should be dismissed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1915(e)(2)(B). 28 U.S.C. 1915(b)(1) Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1915(b)(1), a prisoner bringing a civil action in forma pauperis is required to pay the full amount of the filing fee. If the prisoner has insufficient funds in his or her prison account to pay the entire fee, the Court must assess and, when funds exist, collect an initial part ial filing fee of 20 percent of the greater of (1) the average monthly deposits in the prisoner's account, or (2) the average monthly balance in the prisoner's account for the prior six-month period. After payment of the initial partial filing fee, the prisoner is required to make monthly payments of 20 percent of the preceding month's income credited to the prisoner's account. 28 U.S.C. 1915(b)(2). The agency having custody of the prisoner will forward these monthly payments to the Clerk of Court each time the amount in the prisoner's account exceeds $10, until the filing fee is fully paid. Id. Plaintiff has submitted an affidavit and a certified copy of his prison account statement for the six-month period immediately preceding the submission of his complaint. A review of plaintiff's acco unt indicates an average monthly deposit of $7.73, and an average monthly balance of $5.90. Plaintiff has insufficient funds to pay the entire filing fee. Accordingly, the Court will assess an initial partial filing fee of $1.55, which is 20 percent of plaintiff's average monthly deposit. 28 U.S.C. 1915(e) Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1915(e)(2)(B), the Court may dismiss a complaint filed in forma pauperis if the action is frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, or seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief. An action is frivolous if "it lacks an arguable basis in either law or in fact." Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 328 (1989). An action fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted if it does not plead "enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 127 S. Ct. 1955, 1974 (2007). In reviewing a pro se complaint under 1915(e)(2)(B), the Court must give the complaint the benefit of a liberal construction. Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972). The Court must also weigh all factual allegations in favor of the plaintiff, unless the facts alleged are clearly baseless. Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 32-33 (1992); Scheuer v. Rhodes, 416 U.S. 232, 236 (1974). -2- The Complaint Plaintiff brings this action under 42 U.S.C. 1983. Named as defendants are Kimberly M. Gardner (Assistant Circuit Attorney), Paula P. Bryant (Associate Circuit Judge), and Jennifer M. Joyce (Circuit Attorney). Plaintiff seeks injunctive relief. Plaintiff alleges that on March 29, 2009, he was indicted on charges of second degree burglary. Plaintiff alleges that defendant Gardner "knowingly committed conviction fraud" by issuing a "false indictment." Plaintiff says that defendant Bryant "committ[ed] conviction fraud" by sending his criminal case to another judge. Plaintiff claims that defendant Joyce had knowledge of his case being transferred. Discussion The allegations in the complaint are conclusory and do not state sufficient facts to support a claim for relief that is plausible on its face. See Twombly, 127 S. Ct. at 1974. As a result, the complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff's motion to proceed in forma pauperis [Doc. #2] is GRANTED. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the plaintiff shall pay an initial filing fee of $1.55 within thirty (30) days of the date of this Order. Plaintiff is instructed to make his remittance payable to "Clerk, United States District Court," and to include upon it: (1) his name; (2) his prison registration number; (3) the case number; and (4) that the remittance is for an original proceeding. -3- IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerk shall not issue process or cause process to issue upon the complaint because the complaint is legally frivolous or fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, or both. An Order of Dismissal will accompany this Memorandum and Order. CHARLES A. SHAW UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE Dated this 15th day of June, 2009. -4-

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