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Chappell v. Perez

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


May 19, 2010

REX CHAPPELL, PLAINTIFF,
v.
T. PEREZ, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Kendall J. Newman United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER

Plaintiff is a state prisoner proceeding without counsel. On February 18, 2010, the undersigned dismissed plaintiff's complaint with thirty days to file an amended complaint. Dkt. No. 15. Thirty days passed and plaintiff did not file an amended complaint. Accordingly, on April 23, 2010, the undersigned recommended that this action be dismissed. Dkt. No. 16.

On April 28, 2010, plaintiff filed a motion for extension of time to file an amended complaint (Dkt. No. 17) and a motion for return of his legal materials (Dkt. No. 18). On May 12, 2010, plaintiff filed objections to the findings and recommendations (Dkt. No. 19).

In his three recently filed pleadings, plaintiff alleges that he was unable to prepare his amended complaint because he is being denied access to his legal materials. In his motion for return of legal materials, plaintiff alleges that he is allowed to have one cubic foot of legal property in his cell. Plaintiff contends that prison officials refuse to allow him to trade the box of legal property he has in his cell for another one. Plaintiff alleges that he requires access to his legal property because it contains evidence in support of the claims he wishes to raise in this action. Plaintiff also alleges that he requires access to his legal property not only to pursue the instant litigation, but also other actions he has pending in this court.

Plaintiff is not required to attach evidence to his amended complaint. Rather, the amended complaint need only contain a short and plain statement of plaintiff's claims. Fed. R. Civ. P. 8. For that reason, it is unclear what particular legal property plaintiff requires access to in order to prepare his amended complaint. In addition, the undersigned may only order that plaintiff have access to legal property related to this case. Because it is not clear why, or even if, plaintiff requires access to his legal property to prepare his amended complaint, his motion for return of his legal property is denied without prejudice. Plaintiff may renew this motion if he is able to demonstrate that he truly requires access to particular documents in order to prepare his amended complaint.

Good cause appearing, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:

1. The April 23, 2010 findings and recommendations (Dkt. No. 16) are vacated;

2. Plaintiff's April 28, 2010 motion for extension of time to file an amended complaint (Dkt. No. 17) is granted; plaintiff's amended complaint is due within thirty days of the date of this order;

3. Plaintiff's motion for return of his legal property (Dkt. No. 18) is denied without prejudice.

20100519

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