Anderson v. Corrigan et al
Opinion and Order. Plaintiff's Motion to proceed in forma pauperis (Related doc # 2 ) is granted. Complaint is dismissed in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B). The Court further certifies, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3), that an appeal from this decision could not be taken in good faith. Judge Christopher A. Boyko on 3/12/2018. (H,CM)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF OHIO
WILFRED L. ANDERSON, MD,
JUDGE PETER J. CORRIGAN, et al.,
CASE NO. 1: 17 CV 2352
JUDGE CHRISTOPHER A. BOYKO
OPINION AND ORDER
CHRISTOPHER A. BOYKO, J.:
Seeking to proceed in forma pauperis, pro se Plaintiff Wilfred L. Anderson has filed a
Non-Prisoner Civil Rights Complaint in this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against
Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas Judge Peter J. Corrigan; Staff Attorney Cheryl L.
Hannan; the State of Ohio; and Luann Mitchell. (Doc. No. 1.) His Complaint pertains to a
Criminal Contempt ruling made against him by Judge Corrigan during the course of a civil
action the Plaintiff brought in State Court against Luann Mitchell and the Cuyahoga
Metropolitan Housing Authority. See Wilfred L. Anderson v. Cuyahoga Metropolitan
Housing Authority, Case No. CV-14-820828. The Judge held Plaintiff in contempt based on
Plaintiff’s violation of Ohio’s vexatious litigator statute, and he imposed monetary finds and a
fifty-day jail sentence on Plaintiff. The Eighth District Court of Appeals reversed the Judge’s
contempt ruling, finding the Judge abused his discretion in imposing criminal sanctions on the
Plaintiff rather than other sanctions specified in Ohio’s vexatious litigator statute.
In his Complaint, Plaintiff alleges the contempt sanction against him was “malicious,
vindictive, [and] unwarranted,” and that Defendants are all liable to him for malicious
prosecution under 32 U.S.C. § 1983. (Doc. No. 1 at 6.) Although his Complaint indicates he
seeks an “injunction,” the only relief actually described in the Complaint is monetary. (See
Standard of Review
Although filings by pro se litigants are liberally construed, Williams v. Curtin, 631
F.3d 380, 383 (6th Cir. 2011), District Courts are required under 28 U.S.C. §1915(e)(2)(B) to
screen all in forma pauperis actions brought in Federal Court, and to dismiss before service
any such action that the Court determines is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim on
which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief from defendant who is immune from
such relief. See 28 U.S.C. §1915(e)(2)(B); Hill v. Lappin, 630 F.3d 468, 470-71 (6th Cir.
2010). In order to state a claim, “a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted
as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.’” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S.
662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)).
Upon review, the Court finds Plaintiff’s Complaint must be dismissed pursuant to §
It is well established that judges and other court officers enjoy absolute immunity from
suits for monetary damages on claims arising out of the performance of judicial or
quasi-judicial functions. See Wappler v. Carniak, 24 F. App'x 294, 295-96 (6th Cir. 2001).
Plaintiff is seeking to hold both Judge Corrigan and Staff Attorney Hannan liable for conduct
falling within the scope of judicial duties for which they are entitled to absolute immunity.
In addition, the State of Ohio is entitled to immunity under the Eleventh Amendment
and cannot be sued for damages in Federal Court. See Herbst v. Voinovich, 9 F. Supp. 2d 828,
832 (N.D. Ohio 1998).
Finally, as Plaintiff himself alleges, Luann Mitchell is a private citizen who does not
act under color of state law. (See Doc. No. 1 at 4, ¶ II (D).) Therefore, Plaintiff has no
cognizable claim against her under § 1983. Azar v. Conley, 456 F.2d 1382 (6th Cir. 1972)
(where a complaint in a civil rights action against a private citizen did not allege that the
private person was acting “under color of law,” the action against such defendant was properly
Accordingly, Plaintiff’s motion to proceed in forma pauperis (Doc. No. 2) is granted,
and his Complaint is dismissed in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B). The Court
further certifies, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(3), that an appeal from this decision could
not be taken in good faith.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
s/ Christopher A. Boyko
CHRISTOPHER A. BOYKO
United States District Judge
Dated: March 12, 2018
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