Crumble v. Shalala
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the Clerk of Court shall not issue process or cause process to issue on defendants, because the amended complaint is legally frivolous and fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e). IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that plaintiff's motion for appointment of counsel doc. #4] is DENIED as moot.A separate Order of Dismissal shall accompany this Memorandum and Order.Dated this 24th day of February, 2014. re: 4 MOTION to Appoint Counsel filed by Plaintiff Kenneth Crumble Signed by District Judge Edward L. Filippine on 2/24/14. (JWJ)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
DONNA E. SHALALA, et al.,
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Before the Court is plaintiff's amended complaint [Doc. #9], filed in response to
this Court's Order of January 24, 2014 [Doc. #8]. For the reasons set forth below, the
Court will dismiss this action without prejudice. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
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
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
The Amended Complaint
Plaintiff brings this action, requesting assistance in obtaining from the Social
Security Administration certain documents relative to his claims for disability and
supplemental security income benefits. Named as defendants are Donna E. Shalala,
Vicki Hichtenegger, Mitchell Stevens, Unknown Cruchala, and Marvellen Halvorsen.
Plaintiff alleges that, despite his numerous attempts to obtain records from 1982 to the
present pertaining to his social security claims, defendants have improperly withheld
copies of these documents. In addition, plaintiff summarily states that defendants are
accepting bribes, and he asks this Court to file criminal charges against them for fraud
At the outset, the Court finds that plaintiff's request for criminal charges to be
brought against defendants is legally frivolous. It is well-settled that "'initiation of a
federal criminal prosecution is a discretionary decision within the Executive Branch not
subject to judicial compulsion.'" Ray v. United States Dept. of Justice, 658 F.2d 608,
610 (8th Cir. 1981) (quoting Ray v. United States Dept. of Justice, 508 F.Supp. 724,
725 (E.D.Mo. 1981)); see also 28 U.S.C. § 547(1).
Moreover, given that the remainder of the amended complaint centers around
plaintiff’s attempts, and desire, to obtain documents from the Social Security
Administration, the Court will liberally construe this action as having been brought
pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. § 552 (the “FOIA”).
The FOIA only applies to “agencies.” 5 U.S.C. § 552(a). To be an “agency”
under the FOIA, an entity must be an “establishment in the executive branch.” 5 U.S.C.
§ 552(f)(1). Because none of the individuals named as a defendant in the instant action
is an “agency” under this definition, the amended complaint will be dismissed for
failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e).
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the Clerk of Court shall not issue process or
cause process to issue on defendants, because the amended complaint is legally
frivolous and fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. See 28 U.S.C. §
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that plaintiff's motion for appointment of counsel
[Doc. #4] is DENIED as moot.
A separate Order of Dismissal shall accompany this Memorandum and Order.
Dated this 24th day of February, 2014.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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