Casterlow-Bey v. Tacoma News Tribune
ORDER denying 1 Motion for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis signed by Judge Benjamin H. Settle.(TG; cc mailed to plaintiff)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF WASHINGTON
TACOMA NEWS TRIBUNE,
CASE NO. C17-5560 BHS
ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF’S
MOTION TO PROCEED IN
FORMA PAUPERIS AND
This matter comes before the Court on Plaintiff Gary Casterlow-Bey’s motion to
proceed in forma pauperis and proposed complaint. Dkts. 1, 1-1.
On July 20, 2017, Casterlow-Bey filed the instant motion and proposed complaint
alleging state law causes of action against Defendant Tacoma News Tribune (“TNT”).
Although Casterlow-Bey admits that TNT is based in Tacoma, he argues that its
published content has nationwide implications that cause harm to him. Dkt. 1-1 at 1.
The Court may permit indigent litigants to proceed in forma pauperis upon
completion of a proper affidavit of indigency. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a). The Court,
however, has broad discretion in denying an application to proceed in forma pauperis.
Weller v. Dickson, 314 F.2d 598 (9th Cir. 1963), cert. denied, 375 U.S. 845 (1963). In
civil actions for damages, the privilege to proceed in forma pauperis should be allowed
only in exceptional circumstances. Id. at 600. “A district court may deny leave to
ORDER - 1
proceed in forma pauperis at the outset if it appears from the face of the proposed
complaint that the action is frivolous or without merit.” Tripati v. First Nat’l Bank &
Trust, 821 F.2d 1368, 1370 (9th Cir. 1987).
In this case, Casterlow-Bey fails to properly assert jurisdiction. “[T]he party
asserting diversity jurisdiction bears the burden of proof . . . .” Kanter v. Warner-
Lambert Co., 265 F.3d 853, 857–58 (9th Cir. 2001). “Section 1332 requires complete
diversity of citizenship; each of the plaintiffs must be a citizen of a different state than
each of the defendants.” Morris v. Princess Cruises, Inc., 236 F.3d 1061, 1067 (9th Cir.
2001) (citing Caterpillar Inc. v. Lewis, 519 U.S. 61, 68 (1996)). Casterlow-Bey
concedes that TNT is a company based in Tacoma and that he is a citizen of Washington.
The Court is unaware of and Casterlow-Bey has failed to show any exception to the
requirement of compete diversity based solely on the national implications of a
company’s work. Therefore, the Court concludes that Casterlow-Bey’s assertion that
diversity jurisdiction exists is without merit. The Court DENIES Casterlow-Bey’s
motion to proceed in forma pauperis and DISMISSES Casterlow-Bey’s complaint. The
Clerk shall close this case.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Dated this 7th day of August, 2017.
BENJAMIN H. SETTLE
United States District Judge
ORDER - 2
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