Carmichael v. Aranas et al

Filing 11

ORDER granting ECF Nos. 7 , 8 and 9 Motions to Extend Time to respond to Plaintiff's Motions ECF Nos. 3 / 4 . Defendants will enter a limited notice of appearance and file a response to Plaintiff's Motions for temporary re straining order/preliminary injunction ECF Nos. 3 / 4 . It Is Further Ordered, that Plaintiff's Motion for Clarification ECF No. 10 is denied. Signed by Judge Miranda M. Du on 02/21/2017. (Copies have been distributed pursuant to the NEF - KW)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 DISTRICT OF NEVADA 8 *** 9 RICHARD LEE CARMICHAEL, 10 Case No. 3:17-cv-00025-MMD-WGC Plaintiff, ORDER v. 11 ROMEO ARANAS, et al., 12 Defendants. 13 14 I. DISCUSSION 15 Defendants have filed three motions for extension of time (ECF Nos. 7, 8, 9) and 16 a motion for clarification of the screening order (ECF No. 10). The Court first addresses 17 the motion for clarification. 18 A. Motion for Clarification 19 On February 9, 2017, this Court issued a screening order in this case and 20 “interpret[ed] the allegations in the complaint as suing individuals that Plaintiff [did] not 21 identify in the caption of his complaint. The Court interpret[ed] [those] individuals as 22 additional defendants.” (ECF No. 5 at 14 n.2.) 23 Defendants now file a motion for clarification “regarding Plaintiff’s named 24 Defendants as opposed to the Defendants added sua sponte by the Court based on 25 Plaintiff’s narrative.” (ECF No. 10 at 1.) Defendants argue that Plaintiff is “required to 26 name individuals they wish to sue with enough specificity to adequately identify as to their 27 identity and whether he or she is a named Defendant.” (Id. at 4.) Defendants assert that 28 “setting forth a person’s name in the narrative of the pleading is not the same as naming 1 the individual as a named defendant.” (Id.) Defendants reference Federal Rule of Civil 2 Procedure 10(a) and this Court’s instructions for filing a 42 U.S.C. § 1983 civil rights 3 complaint. (Id. at 4; see also ECF No. 10-1.) Defendants argue that “[d]eciding, sua 4 sponte, that an individual in the text/narrative of the pleading is to be accorded party status 5 would appear to be judicial overreaching and manifestly unfair to the Defendants.” (ECF 6 No. 10 at 4.) 7 Courts are required to construe pro se pleadings liberally, “particularly where civil 8 rights claims are involved.” Balistreri v. Pacifica Police Dep’t, 901 F.2d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 9 1988); see Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (holding that “[a] document filed 10 pro se is ‘to be liberally construed,’ . . . and a pro se complaint, however inartfully pleaded, 11 must be held to less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers”); see 12 also Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(e) (stating that “[p]leadings must be construed so as to do justice”). 13 Moreover, in keeping with the liberal construction of pro se pleadings, the Ninth Circuit 14 has explicitly held that “even if an improper defendant is indicated in the caption, we may 15 consider a complaint to have named the proper defendant ‘if the allegations made in the 16 body of the complaint make it plain that the party is intended as a defendant.’” Barsten v. 17 Dep’t of Interior, 896 F.2d 422, 423 (9th Cir. 1990). District courts throughout the Ninth 18 Circuit have applied this principle to pro se pleadings and have added defendants to 19 complaints based on the body of the pleadings despite their omission from the captions 20 or headings of the complaints. See Grindling v. Shibao, No. CV-16-00426-DKW-RLP, 21 2016 WL 5661757, at *1 n.1 (D. Haw. Sept. 29, 2016) (unpublished) (finding that 22 “[a]lthough Gilbert Shibao is the only defendant named in the caption of the First Amended 23 Complaint, throughout the body of the pleading, Grindling alleges conduct by other 24 correctional officers who were previously named in his original complaint, including Isaac 25 Gazmen, Bert Sam Fong, Reef Shook, Jared Tajon, Ross Andre and Paulo Faleafine. 26 Liberally construing the First Amended Complaint, it appears that Grindling intended for 27 these additional parties to be named as defendants, despite their omission from the 28 caption or heading of the First Amended Complaint”); see DiParra v. Parole Cmty. Servs., 2 1 No. CV-07-0114-IEG-POR, 2008 WL 1861405, at *3 (S.D. Cal. Apr. 24, 2008) 2 (unpublished) (finding that “[b]ecause Plaintiff does refer to Defendant Wickline in [the] 3 body of the Second Amended Complaint, the Court will liberally construe Plaintiff’s 4 Second Amended Complaint and find that Plaintiff did intend to name Wickline as a 5 Defendant in this action). 6 Here, the Court applied the liberal pleading standard in construing Plaintiff’s pro se 7 pleading to name defendants identified in the body of the complaint. As such, the Court 8 denies Defendants’ motion for clarification. The screening order remains as entered. B. 9 Motions for Extension of Time 10 In the screening order, the Court directed Defendants to (1) enter a limited notice 11 of appearance; and (2) file a response to Plaintiff’s motion for temporary restraining 12 order/preliminary injunction within seven (7) days from the date of that order. (ECF No. 5 13 at 15-16.) Defendants seek an extension of time through Thursday, February 23, 2017, 14 to enter their limited appearance and file their response. (ECF No. 7, 8, 9.) The Court 15 grants the motions for extension of time. Defendants will have until Thursday, February 16 23, 2017, to enter a limited notice of appearance and file a response to Plaintiff’s motion 17 for temporary restraining order/preliminary injunction. 18 II. CONCLUSION 19 For the foregoing reasons, it is ordered that the motions for extension of time (ECF 20 Nos. 7, 8, 9) are granted. Defendants will enter a limited notice of appearance and file a 21 response to Plaintiff’s motion for temporary restraining order/preliminary injunction on or 22 before Thursday, February 23, 2017. Plaintiff may file a reply within ten (10) days from 23 the date of Defendants’ response. 24 It is further ordered that Plaintiff’s motion for clarification (ECF No. 10) is denied. 25 DATED THIS 21st day of February 2017. 26 MIRANDA M. DU UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 27 28 3

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