Smith et al v. Corrections Corporation of America et al

Filing 26

ORDER by Magistrate Judge Gregory J. Fouratt denying 20 Motion to Appoint Counsel. (kdj)

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT DISTRICT OF NEW MEXICO CARTRELL R. SMITH SR., JASON LUTZ, and ROBERT ORGAN, Plaintiffs, v. Civ. No. 16-1201 MCA/GJF CORRECTIONS CORP. OF AMERICA TORRANCE COUNTY, and CHAD MILLER, Defendants. ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL THIS MATTER is before the Court on the Motion to Appoint Legal Counsel filed by Plaintiff Cartrell R. Smith Sr. [ECF No. 20]. The Court will deny the Motion. There is no right to appointment of counsel in a civil rights case. Instead, the decision whether to request assistance of counsel rests in the sound discretion of the Court. Beaudry v. Corrections Corp. of America, 331 F.3d 1164, 1169 (10th Cir. 2003); MacCuish v. United States, 844 F.2d 733, 735 (10th Cir. 1988). In determining whether to appoint counsel, the district court should consider the merits of the litigant's claims, the nature and complexity of the factual and legal issues, and the litigant's ability to investigate the facts and to present his claims. Hill v. SmithKline Beecham Corp., 393 F.3d 1111, 1115 (10th Cir. 2004). The Court has reviewed the complaint and subsequent filings in light of the foregoing factors. Plaintiff Smith appears to understand the issues in the case and to be representing himself in an intelligent and capable manner. See Lucero v. Gunter, 52 F.3d 874, 878 (10th Cir. 1995). To the extent Plaintiff Smith seeks appointment of counsel for his co-Plaintiffs, Jason Lutz and Robert Organ, Plaintiff Smith may only proceed on his own requests and may not seek relief on their behalf. Adams ex rel. D.J.W. v. Astrue, 659 1 F.3d 1297, 1299 (10th Cir. 2011). Accordingly, the Court will deny the Motion to Appoint Legal Counsel. IT IS ORDERED that the Motion to Appoint Legal Counsel filed by Plaintiff Cartrell R. Smith Sr. [ECF No. 20] is DENIED. IT IS SO ORDERED. ________________________________________ THE HONORABLE GREGORY J. FOURATT UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 2

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