Proby v. Russell et al
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER: IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff's motion for appointment [ECF. No. 4] of counsel is DENIED without prejudice. Signed by District Judge John A. Ross on 10/10/14. (JWD)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
GEORGE PROBY, JR.,
TERRY RUSSELL, et al.,
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on plaintiff’s motion for appointment of counsel. The
motion will be denied.
There is no constitutional or statutory right to appointed counsel in civil cases. Nelson v.
Redfield Lithograph Printing, 728 F.2d 1003, 1004 (8th Cir. 1984). In determining whether to
appoint counsel, the Court considers several factors, including (1) whether the plaintiff has
presented non-frivolous allegations supporting his or her prayer for relief; (2) whether the
plaintiff will substantially benefit from the appointment of counsel; (3) whether there is a need to
further investigate and present the facts related to the plaintiff’s allegations; and (4) whether the
factual and legal issues presented by the action are complex. See Johnson v. Williams, 788 F.2d
1319, 1322–23 (8th Cir. 1986); Nelson, 728 F.2d at 1005.
After considering these factors, the Court finds that the appointment of counsel is not
warranted at this time. The case is neither factually nor legally complex. Moreover, it is evident
that plaintiff is able to present his claims, because the Court has ordered defendants to respond to
plaintiff’s claims. The Court notes plaintiff’s assertion that he has been denied access to the law
library, which in turn will lead to his case being dismissed. However, the Court’s review of the
filings in this matter reveals that plaintiff received a letter from the librarian of the prison on
August 26, 2014, informing him that his “Qualified Legal Claim” ended on August 20, 2014, and
that he could not receive legal materials until he has an active “Qualified Legal Claim.” [ECF.
NO. 5-2 at 1]. Presumably, the Court’s granting of plaintiff’s motion to proceed in forma
pauperis in this matter, as well as in Proby v. Bullock, 4:14-CV-1355-HEA (E.D. Mo.), will
constitute “Qualified Legal Claims,” which will allow plaintiff access to legal materials. For the
foregoing reasons, the Court finds that the appointment of counsel would be premature at this
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff’s motion for appointment [ECF. No. 4] of
counsel is DENIED without prejudice.
Dated this 10th day of October, 2014.
JOHN A. ROSS
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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