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Vance Blaine v. Lesley Klein

December 17, 2010

VANCE BLAINE, PLAINTIFF,
v.
LESLEY KLEIN, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: VICTOR B. Kenton United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER RE DISMISSAL OF COMPLAINT WITH LEAVE TO AMEND

Pro se Plaintiff Vance Blaine (hereinafter referred to as "Plaintiff") filed a civil rights complaint against Defendants Lesley Klein (District Attorney); Hilary Rhonan (District Attorney); Hideo E. Nakano (Attorney); Marshall Marilee (Attorney); Compton Police Department (Crime Scene Investigators and Collector of Evidentiary Specimens); Martin Luther King Hospital Supervisors John & Jain (sic) Does 1-50 (Supervising the Collecting of DNA from a Victim); Dr. Reedy; John and Jane Does of five (5) unknown state DNA laboratories in both their individual and official capacities. (Complaint at 6-8.)

Plaintiff requests the Court provide him with reasonable accommodations and appointment of counsel. Plaintiff alleges he is currently being treated for cancer which has some side effects.*fn1

Plaintiff is attempting to obtain "post-conviction access to all known evidentiary specimens and samples from the crime scene and the criminal investigation in case number A641525, the victim Shawanna Demier Neal, Compton Police Department and Martin Luther King Hospital." (Complaint at 9.)

Plaintiff intends to subject the collected crime scene evidence to DNA testing that was unavailable at Plaintiff's trial. Id. at 10. Plaintiff requests that "each named defendant release all cell collected biological evidence collected from the crime scenes." Plaintiff intends to use this exculpatory DNA evidence to petition the State Courts through a Writ of Habeas Corpus for relief on the grounds of actual innocence.

STANDARD OF REVIEW

A complaint may be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, pursuant to F.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(1). Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 327 n.6, 109 S.Ct. 1827 (1989) (unanimous decision)(patently insubstantial complaint may be dismissed under Rule 12(b)(1) for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. When considering a dismissal, a Court must accept as true all allegations and material facts and must construe those facts in a light most favorable to the plaintiff. Resnick v. Hayes, 213 F.3d 443, 447 (9th Cir. 2000). However, a "court [is not] required to accept as true allegations that are merely conclusory, unwarranted deductions of fact, or unreasonable inferences." Sprewell v. Golden State Warriors, 266 F.3d 979, 988 (9th Cir. 2001). Nor is a Court "bound to accept as true a legal conclusion couched as a factual allegation." Ashcroft v. Iqbal, ___ U.S. ___, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949-50, 173 L.Ed.2d 868 (2009).

"To survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to 'state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'" Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949 (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. V. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570, 127 S.Ct. 1955(2007)). "A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the Court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged." Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949, 173 L.Ed.2d 868 (2009)(citing Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556.) "The plausibility standard is not akin to a 'probability requirement,' but it asks for more than a sheer possibility that a defendant acted unlawfully." (Id.) Although a complaint need not include "'detailed factual allegations,' ... [a] pleading that offers 'labels and conclusions' or 'a formulaic recitation of the elements of the cause of action will not do.'" Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949 (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555.) The Complaint must contain "factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged." Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949. "[W]here the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to infer more than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has alleged - but it has not 'show[n]' - 'that the pleader is entitled to relief.'" (Id. at 1950 [quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2) (internal brackets omitted).

In civil rights cases in which the Plaintiff appears pro se, the pleadings must be construed liberally, so as to afford the plaintiff the benefit of any doubt as to the potential validity of the claims asserted. Karim-Panahi v. Los Angeles Police Dept., 839 F.2d 621, 623 (9th Cir. 1988). If, despite such liberal construction, the Court finds that the complaint should be dismissed for failure to state a claim, the Court has the discretion to dismiss the complaint with or without leave to amend. Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1126-30 (9th Cir. 2000). A pro se litigant should be given leave to amend, unless it is clear that the deficiencies of the complaint cannot be cured by amendment. Lopez, 203 F.3d at 1130-31; Cato v. United States, 70 F.3d 1103, 1106 (9th Cir. 1995); Noll v. Carlson, 809 F.2d 1446, 1448 (9th Cir. 1987).

DISCUSSION

For all of the following reasons, the Complaint should be dismissed with leave to amend.

A. Plaintiff Has Failed To State A Claim Under Section 1983.

42 U.S.C. §1983 provides: "Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any state... subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress."

In order to state a claim under §1983, Plaintiff must allege that: (1) Defendant was acting under color of state law at the time the complained-of act was committed; and (2) Defendant's conduct deprived Plaintiff of rights, privileges or immunities secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States. Parratt v. Taylor, 451 U.S. 527, 535, 101 S.Ct. 1908 (1981), overruled on other grounds by Daniels v. Williams, 474 U.S. 327, 330-31, ...


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