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Bruce v. Woodford

September 7, 2010

VINCENT C. BRUCE, PLAINTIFF,
v.
JEANNE WOODFORD, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sheila K. Oberto United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER RE MOTIONS (Docs. 79, 80, 81, 82) and FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS RECOMMENDING THAT PLAINTIFF'S REQUEST FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTIVE RELIEF BE DENIED (Doc. 79) OBJECTIONS DUE WITHIN 30 DAYS

Plaintiff Vincent C. Bruce ("Plaintiff") is a state prisoner proceeding pro se in this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Before the Court are four motions from Plaintiff.

On August 27, 2010, Plaintiff filed a motion requesting appointment of counsel, or in the alternative, an order requiring prison officials to provide Plaintiff with adequate law library access. (Doc. # 79.)

Plaintiff also filed a motion requesting "limited discovery" to prepare objections to the Findings and Recommendations issued by the Court on August 2, 2010. (Doc. #80.) Plaintiff claims that he needs to request documents from Defendants that will defeat the statute of limitations argument raised in their motion to dismiss.

Plaintiff's third motion is a "Request for Guidance on Written Objections to Magistrate's Findings & Recommendations." (Doc. #81.) Plaintiff requests "guidance" on whether he is allowed to submit exhibits with his objections to the findings and recommendations. Plaintiff also wishes to know whether he may submit a proposed amended complaint with his objections.

Plaintiff's fourth motion is a request for a 60-day extension of time to file objections to the Findings and Recommendations. (Doc. # 82.)

I. Plaintiff's Motions

A. Motion for Appointment of Counsel/Law Library Access

On August 27, 2010, Plaintiff filed a motion requesting appointment of counsel or, in the alternative, requesting an order requiring prison officials to provide Plaintiff with adequate time in the law library.

1. Appointment of Counsel

Plaintiff does not have a constitutional right to appointed counsel in this action, Rand v. Rowland, 113 F.3d 1520, 1525 (9th Cir. 1997), and the court cannot require an attorney to represent plaintiff pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1). Mallard v. United States District Court for the Southern District of Iowa, 490 U.S. 296, 298, 109 S.Ct. 1814, 1816 (1989). However, in certain exceptional circumstances the court may request the voluntary assistance of counsel pursuant to section 1915(e)(1). Rand, 113 F.3d at 1525.

Without a reasonable method of securing and compensating counsel, the court will seek volunteer counsel only in the most serious and exceptional cases. In determining whether "exceptional circumstances exist, the district court must evaluate both the likelihood of success of the merits [and] the ability of the [plaintiff] to articulate his claims pro se in light of the complexity of the legal issues involved." Id. (internal quotation marks and citations omitted).

In the present case, the court does not find the required exceptional circumstances. Even if it is assumed that plaintiff is not well versed in the law and that he has made serious allegations which, if proved, would entitle him to relief, his case is not exceptional. This court is faced with similar cases almost daily. Further, at this early stage in the proceedings, the court cannot make a determination that plaintiff is likely to succeed on the merits, and based on a review of the record in this case, the court ...


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