Vaughn v. Bowers et al
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER. (see order for details) IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff shall show cause, in writing and no later than August 20, 2014, why this action should not be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. Failure to comply with this Order will result in the dismissal of this action without further proceedings. Signed by District Judge E. Richard Webber on 08/05/2014. (CBL)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
CONRAD W. BOWERS, et al.,
No. 4:14CV01358 ERW
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on review of plaintiff’s complaint for subject matter
jurisdiction. Under Rule 12(h)(3) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the Court is required
to screen all cases for jurisdiction and to dismiss if jurisdiction is lacking. After carefully
reviewing this case, the Court has determined that subject matter jurisdiction does not exist.
Plaintiff purports to bring this action under the “common law actions of case and
trespass.” Plaintiff was given a traffic ticket by a City of Bridgeton police officer for failing to
register a motor vehicle. Plaintiff claims that the City of Bridgeton does not have jurisdiction
over her, and she is attempting to sue the City’s Mayor, Judges, Prosecutor, and a police officer
on the basis that she has been ordered to appear in court. Plaintiff has filed a supplement to the
complaint stating, “I require that no federal statute be assigned to this case. This case is to
proceed according to the course of common law and federal statutes are invalid.”
“Federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction. The requirement that jurisdiction be
established as a threshold matter springs from the nature and limits of the judicial power of the
United States and is inflexible and without exception.” Kessler v. Nat’l Enterprises, Inc., 347
F.3d 1076, 1081 (8th Cir. 2003) (quotation marks omitted); see Kuhl v. Hampton, 451 F.2d 340,
342 (8th Cir. 1971) (federal courts “were not established to mediate any and all types of
complaints and alleged wrongs.”).
Federal jurisdiction is governed by statute. For jurisdiction to exist in this case, there
must be either federal question jurisdiction or diversity jurisdiction. Federal question jurisdiction
does not exist because the cause of action does not arise “under the Constitution, laws, or treaties
of the United States.” 28 U.S.C. § 1331. Diversity jurisdiction does not exist because the parties
are not diverse and the amount in controversy does not exceed $75,000. 28 U.S.C. § 1332. In
consequence, the Court will order plaintiff to show cause why this action should not be
dismissed under Rule 12(h)(3).
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff shall show cause, in writing and no later than
August 20, 2014, why this action should not be dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. Failure to
comply with this Order will result in the dismissal of this action without further proceedings.
So Ordered this 5th day of August, 2014.
E. RICHARD WEBBER
SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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