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Ellis v. Circle K Corporation

United States District Court, D. Arizona

December 21, 2018

Gregory Micheal Ellis, Plaintiff,
v.
Circle K Corporation, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER

          JAMES A. TEILBORG SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         On December 18, 2018, the Court issued the following Order:

CV 18-1842-PHX-JAT was previously pending before this Court. That case was, as far as this Court has determined, virtually identical to this case. In that case, this Court, after giving Plaintiff two opportunities to amend the complaint, dismissed the case (without prejudice). Specifically, this Court issued the following Orders:
On June 14, 2018, the Court issued the following Order:
Pending before the Court is Plaintiff's application to proceed in forma pauperis. “Inquiring whether the court has jurisdiction is a federal judge's first duty in every case.” Belleville Catering Co. v. Champaign Market Place, L.L.C., 350 F.3d 691, 693 (7th Cir. 2003). In this case, Plaintiff's “complaint” is actually two separate complaints run together as a single document. (Doc. 1).
In complaint 1, Plaintiff alleges jurisdiction based on diversity. (Doc. 1 at 3). However, Plaintiff fails to plead the citizenship of any party. See generally Caterpillar v. Lewis, 386 U.S. 523, 531 (1996). Further, the address listed for every party is in Arizona.
In complaint 2, Plaintiff alleges federal question jurisdiction. In this complaint, Plaintiff leaves blank all sections on federal question jurisdiction. (Doc. 1 at 8). On this record, Plaintiff has failed to allege federal question jurisdiction.
Based on the foregoing, Plaintiff has failed to allege or establish federal subject matter jurisdiction. Therefore,
IT IS ORDERED that by June 28, 2018, Plaintiff shall file an amended (single) complaint properly alleging federal subject matter jurisdiction or this case will be dismissed, without prejudice.
(Doc. 9).
On June 28, 2018, the Court issued the following Order:
On June 15, 2018, Plaintiff filed a single amended complaint. In this amended complaint, Plaintiff alleges jurisdiction based on federal question, specifically “United States Code Title 42, Chapter 21[.]” (Doc. 10 at 3). Under Plaintiff's statement of claim he states, (quoted in its entirety) “Racial Discrimination, Defamation of Character, Harassment, and Denial of Public Services due to Race.” (Doc. 10 at 4). Plaintiff also made a demand of “Five Million Dollars”. (Doc. 10 at 4). The Court has quoted all of Plaintiff's allegations in his amended complaint.
As the Court noted in its prior Order, Plaintiff seeks to proceed in forma pauperis.
A. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)
Congress provided with respect to in forma pauperis cases that a district court "shall dismiss the case at any time if the court determines" that the "allegation of poverty is untrue" or that the "action or appeal" is "frivolous or malicious," "fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted," or "seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief." 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). While much of section 1915 outlines how prisoners can file proceedings in forma pauperis, section 1915(e) applies to all in forma pauperis proceedings, not just those filed by prisoners. Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1127 (9th Cir. 2000)("section 1915(e) applies to all in forma pauperis complaints"). "It is also clear that section 1915(e) not only permits but requires a district court to dismiss an in forma pauperis complaint that fails to state a claim." Id. Therefore, this court must dismiss an in forma pauperis complaint if it fails to state a claim or if it is frivolous or malicious.
"[A] complaint, containing both factual allegations and legal conclusions, is frivolous where it lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact." Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). Furthermore, "a finding of factual frivolousness is appropriate when the facts alleged rise to the level of the irrational or wholly incredible, whether or not there are judicially recognized facts available to contradict them." Denton v. Hernandez, 504 U.S. 25, 33 (1992). "A case is malicious if it was filed with the intention or desire to harm another." Andrews v. King, 398 F.3d 1113, 1121 (9th Cir. 2005).
B. Rule 8, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
A claim must be stated clearly enough to enable a defendant to frame a responsive pleading. A complaint must contain "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a). "Each averment of a pleading shall be simple, concise, and direct." Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(e)(1). A complaint having the factual elements of a cause of action present but scattered throughout the complaint and not organized into a "short and plain statement of the claim" may be dismissed for failure to satisfy Rule 8(a). Sparling v. Hoffman Constr. Co., 864 F.2d 635, 640 (9th Cir. 1988).
In order to assist litigants to understand the Rule 8(e) requirements that averments "be simple, concise, and direct," Rule 84 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides samples in an Appendix of Forms, which are "intended to indicate the simplicity and brevity of statement which the rules contemplate." McHenry v. Renne, 84 F.3d 1172, 1177 (9th Cir. 1996). An example is Form 9 (Complaint for Negligence):
1. Allegation of jurisdiction
2. On June 1, 1936, in a public highway called Boylston Street in Boston, Massachusetts, defendant negligently drove a motor vehicle against plaintiff, who was then crossing said highway.
3. As a result plaintiff was thrown down and had his leg broken, and was otherwise injured, was prevented from transacting his business, suffered great pain of body and mind, and incurred expenses for medical attention ...

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