FROST et al v. HOWMEDICA OSTEONICS et al
OPINION filed. Signed by Judge Brian R. Martinotti on 5/22/2017. (km)
NOT FOR PUBLICATION
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY
Civil Action No. 17-2710-BRM-TJB
A.O., 1 et al.,
MARTINOTTI, DISTRICT JUDGE
Before this Court is Plaintiff Malcom Gatson’s (“Plaintiff”) complaint (the “Second
Complaint”) (ECF No. 1), asserting claims pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. For the reasons set forth
below, the Court directs the Clerk of the Court to refile the Second Complaint (ECF No. 1) as a
supplement to the complaint filed in Docket Number 17-2014 (the “Original Complaint”) (Docket
No. 17-2014 at ECF No. 1) and DISMISS this docket as duplicative of that matter.
On or about March 27, 2017, Plaintiff filed the Original Complaint raising claims pursuant
to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (See Docket No. 17-2014 at ECF No. 1.) Specifically, he alleged a woman
identified as A.O. falsely accused him of rape and robbery and that prosecutors and police withheld
evidence from him in his ongoing criminal matter in the state courts. (Id. at 4-7.) Plaintiff also
sought to proceed in forma pauperis in that matter. (See Docket No. 17-2014 at ECF No. 1-2.) On
March 31, 2017, this Court denied Plaintiff’s application to proceed in forma pauperis without
In his Original Complaint (see Docket No. 17-2014 at ECF No. 1), Plaintiff names as a defendant
a woman he claims has accused him of rape (id. at 1 n.1), and the Court refers to her by her initials
due to the sensitive nature of the facts at issue in the complaint. See, e.g., Florida Star v. B.J.F.,
491 U.S. 524, 527 n.2 (1989).
prejudice, and administratively terminated Plaintiff’s Original Complaint until Plaintiff either paid
the filing fee or refiled his application to proceed in forma pauperis. (Id.)
On April 20, 2017, Plaintiff filed two new similar but separate complaints with two new
docket numbers (the Second Complaint currently before the Court and a third complaint (the
“Third Complaint”) (Docket No. 17-2712 at ECF No. 1)) asserting nearly identical claims to the
Original Complaint and two applications to proceed in forma pauperis. 2 The Second Complaint
asserts claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against police detectives for concealing evidence in his
criminal case arising out of A.O.’s accusations. (ECF No. 1.) The claims raised in Plaintiff’s
Second Complaint allege the same conduct addressed in his Original Complaint, but elaborate
upon one of the claims asserted in the Original Complaint, that evidence was being withheld from
him by prosecutors and the police. Because Plaintiff’s Second Complaint raises claims similar to
his Original Complaint but provides additional facts, Plaintiff’s Second Complaint is duplicative
of his Original Complaint and therefore the Court directs the Clerk of the Court to refile Plaintiff’s
Second Complaint as a supplement to his Original Complaint under his original docket number
and dismiss this docket as duplicative of that matter. See e.g., Fabics v. City of New Brunswick,
629 F. App’x 196, 198 (3d Cir. 2015) (noting that district courts faced with a duplicative complaint
can “stay the second action, consolidate it with the first, or dismiss the second complaint without
prejudice”). 3 An appropriate Order will follow.
Date: May 22, 2017
/s/Brian R. Martinotti
HON. BRIAN R. MARTINOTTI
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
The Court is simultaneously issuing a separate opinion and order addressing the Third
Complaint on Docket No. 17-2712.
Plaintiff also seeks to proceed in forma pauperis in this matter. (ECF No. 1-1.) This Court will
address Plaintiff’s in forma pauperis application in a separate opinion after the Second Complaint
is refiled as a supplement to Plaintiff’s Original Complaint under Docket Number 17-2014.
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