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Bowman v. Schwarzenegger

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


June 10, 2010

GARY STEVEN BOWMAN, PLAINTIFF,
v.
ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

ORDER

Plaintiff has requested an extension of time to file an amended complaint pursuant to the court's order of May 19, 2010. He has also asked to expand his amended complaint to add a challenge to the Static 99 coding rules contained in California Penal Code sections 290.04 through 290.06.

The defendants have answered the first amended complaint, so plaintiff needs leave of court to file an amended complaint. Fed. R Civ. P. 15(a)(2). Although leave should be given freely, five factors govern the inquiry: bad faith, undue delay, prejudice to the opposing party, futility of amendment, and whether the plaintiff has previously amended the complaint. Johnson v. Buckley, 356 F.3d 1067, 1077 (9th Cir. 2004). The proposed amendment does not appear to be sought in bad faith, nor would the defendants necessarily be prejudiced, as discovery has not yet commenced. Nevertheless, this case has been pending for two and a half years, although it has been stayed for a portion of that time pending the resolution of a case by the California Supreme Court. During that time, plaintiff has filed numerous motions and challenges to aspects of his parole stemming from the requirement that he register as a sex offender. When the court granted plaintiff's motion to file a second amended complaint, it contemplated that the issue would be limited to his challenge to the residency requirements of Jessica's law, an issue the court has already screened. Should plaintiff be permitted to amend the complaint to add his undefined challenges to the Static 99 rules, the court would be required to screen the complaint once again, which would further delay the proceedings. Moreover, plaintiff has not suggested why he did not raise the proposed challenges initially. Finally, it is not clear that this challenge is one properly brought against the current defendants; adding additional defendants might further delay the resolution of this case.

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:

1. Plaintiff's June 3, 2010 motion for an extension of time (Docket No. 154) is granted;

2. Plaintiff is granted fourteen days from the date of this order in which to file and serve an amended complaint; but

3. Plaintiff's motion to add challenges to the Static 99 coding rules to the amended complaint is denied.

20100610

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