Hogg v. Cox et al

Filing 13

ORDER denying 7 and 12 Motions for District Judge to Reconsider Order. Signed by Judge Robert C. Jones on 9/16/15. (Copies have been distributed pursuant to the NEF; NEF also sent to Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals - JC) Modified on 9/16/2015 (KR).

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT DISTRICT OF NEVADA 1 2 3 4 ROOSEVELT MAURICE HOGG, Plaintiff, 5 6 7 8 9 vs. COX et al., Defendants. ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) 3:15-cv-00158-RCJ-WGC ORDER 10 11 12 13 Plaintiff is a prisoner in the custody of the State of Nevada. He sued Defendants in this court based on alleged due process violations at his initial classification hearing. The Court dismissed upon screening, without leave to amend, ruling that Plaintiff was simply dissatisfied 14 with the outcome of the hearing, i.e., his classification as a sex offender. The Court declined to 15 16 exercise supplemental jurisdiction over the state law claims. Plaintiff asks the Court to 17 reconsider, arguing that he did not in fact have advance notice of the hearing, did not have the 18 ability to call witnesses or present documentary evidence, and was not given a written statement 19 by the fact-finder of the evidence relied upon and the reasons for the classification. 20 21 The Court finds that it ultimately does not matter whether any particular process was 22 provided, because classification as a sex offender is insufficient without more to implicate a 23 liberty interest under the Due Process Clause. Rather, inmate classification must necessarily 24 result in a condition of confinement that “imposes atypical and significant hardship on the inmate 25 in relation to the ordinary incidents of prison life.” Sandin v. Conner, 515 U.S. 472, 483 (1995). 26 27 To satisfy this standard, the stigma of being labeled as mentally ill or as a sex offender must be 28 coupled with some resulting additional restriction on one’s freedom. Neal v. Shimoda, 131 F.3d 1 1 818, 828–30 (9th Cir. 1997) (finding that a liberty interest was implicated where classification as 2 a sex offender mandated completion of a sex offender treatment program before a prisoner so 3 classified was eligible for parole). Mere classification as a sex offender does not implicate a 4 liberty interest under the Due Process Clause, even if mandatory treatment is involved, unless 5 failure to complete the treatment will result in some additional deprivation cognizable under 6 7 Sandin. Id. at 830; Cooper v. Garcia, 55 F. Supp. 2d 1090, 1102 (S.D. Cal. 1999) (citing id.) 8 (dismissing a due process claim based on classification as a sex offender where the only alleged 9 effect on the plaintiff’s liberty was the denial of visitation privileges that did not rise to the level 10 of a liberty interest under Sandin); Barno v. Ryan, 399 Fed. Appx. 272, 273 (9th Cir. Oct. 12, 11 2010) (citing Sandin, 515 U.S. at 484; Neal, 131 F.3d at 827–28) (affirming dismissal of a 12 13 similar claim for the same reason). Plaintiff here has alleged no cognizable deprivation resulting 14 from his classification. He alleges only “stigma” and having been entered into a sex offender 15 database. 16 CONCLUSION 17 18 19 20 21 IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the Motions to Reconsider (ECF Nos. 7, 12) are DENIED. IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated this 16th day September, 2015. Dated this 11th day of of September, 2015. 22 23 24 25 _____________________________________ ROBERT C. JONES United States District Judge 26 27 28 2

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