Allah v. Sherfey

Filing 10

ORDER, by Judge Ronald B. Leighton. Allah's Motion for Recusal, Dkt 7 , is DENIED, and Judge Martinez's Order Declining to Recuse, Dkt 8 , is AFFIRMED.**3 PAGE(S), PRINT ALL**(Allah, Prisoner ID: 950376)(DK)

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HONORABLE RONALD B. LEIGHTON 1 2 3 4 5 6 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT WESTERN DISTRICT OF WASHINGTON AT TACOMA 7 8 CASE NO. C17-1746RSM-JPD ALLAH, 9 Plaintiff, 10 11 ORDER v. PAUL SHERFEY, 12 Defendant. 13 14 THIS MATTER is before the Court on review of Chief Judge Ricardo Martinez’s Order 15 [Dkt. #8], declining to recuse himself in response to Plaintiff Allah’s1 Motion to Recuse [Dkt. 16 #7]. That Order was referred to this Court as the most senior non-Chief Judge under 28 U.S.C. 17 §144 and LCR 3(e). 18 Allah claims that Judge Martinez is a “liar,” “the devil” and a “creep.” He claims Judge 19 Martinez is demonstrating bias and prejudice to Allah, possibly based on a decision in another 20 case, and possibly based on the fact that he has not yet succeed in this case: 21 22 23 24 1 Plaintiff refers to himself as “Allah@”. He is incarcerated, following a conviction under another name. The gist of his complaint appears to be that he, Allah, is not the named person convicted, the Court and Judges involved in his case are not legitimate, and the conviction should be vacated on that basis. ORDER - 1 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 [Dkt. #7 at 3]. 10 A federal judge should recuse himself if “a reasonable person with knowledge of all the 11 facts would conclude that the judge’s impartiality might reasonably be questioned.” 28 U.S.C. 12 § 144; see also 28 U.S.C. § 455; Yagman v. Republic Insurance, 987 F.2d 622, 626 (9th Cir. 13 1993). This objective inquiry is concerned with whether there is the appearance of bias, not 14 whether there is bias in fact. See Preston v. United States, 923 F.2d 731, 734 (9th Cir. 1992); see 15 also United States v. Conforte, 624 F.2d 869, 881 (9th Cir. 1980). ). In the absence of specific 16 allegations of personal bias, prejudice, or interest, neither prior adverse rulings of a judge nor his 17 participation in a related or prior proceeding is sufficient” to establish bias. Davis v. Fendler, 650 18 F.2d 1154, 1163 (9th Cir. 1981). Judicial rulings alone “almost never” constitute a valid basis for 19 a bias or partiality motion. Liteky v. United States, 510 U.S. 540, 555 (1994). 20 Allah’s recusal motion does not identify or claim any personal bias, prejudice or interest 21 on the part of Judge Martinez. It does not articulate any fact that would lead a reasonable 22 observer to question Judge Martinez’s impartiality. It is based instead on his claim that the state 23 court judgment is invalid and that Judge Martinez will dismiss his case to save his fellow 24 ORDER - 2 1 “creeps.” Furthermore, if and to the extent the claim of bias is based on Allah’s lack of success in 2 this or a different case, that is not a valid basis for a motion to recuse; judicial rulings alone 3 “almost never” are. 4 Allah’s Motion for Recusal [Dkt. #7] is DENIED, and Judge Martinez’s Order Declining 5 to Recuse [Dkt. #8] is AFFIRMED. 6 IT IS SO ORDERED. 7 8 9 Dated this 9th day of January, 2018. 11 A 12 Ronald B. Leighton United States District Judge 10 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 ORDER - 3

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