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Derek La Van Jackson v. City and County of San Diego

April 13, 2011

DEREK LA VAN JACKSON,
PETITIONER,
v.
CITY AND COUNTY OF SAN DIEGO RESPONDENTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Janis L. Sammartino United States District Judge

ORDER DENYING MOTION TO WITHOUT PREJUDICE PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS , AND DISMISSING CASE MOTION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS

Petitioner, a state prisoner proceeding pro se, has filed a Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2254, along with a Motion to proceed in forma pauperis. The Petition is subject to dismissal without prejudice because Petitioner has failed to satisfy the filing fee requirement, failed to name a proper respondent, failed to use a court-approved form, failed to sign the Petition under penalty of perjury, failed to state a claim for relief, and failed to allege exhaustion of state court remedies.

Petitioner has attached an "Affidavit of Indigency and Motion to Proceed In Forma Pauperis." (Doc. No. 2.) The request to proceed in forma pauperis is DENIED because Petitioner has not provided the Court with sufficient information to determine his financial status. A request to proceed in forma pauperis made by a state prisoner must include a certificate from the warden or other appropriate officer showing the amount of money or securities Petitioner has on account in the institution in which he is confined. Rule 3(a)(2), 28 U.S.C. foll.

§ 2254; Local Rule 3.2. Petitioner has failed to provide the Court with the required Prison Certificate. The proper Southern District in forma pauperis form, which includes the required Prison Certificate, will be sent to Petitioner along with a coy of this Order.

Because this Court cannot proceed until Petitioner has either paid the $5.00 filing fee or qualified to proceed in forma pauperis, the Court DISMISSES the case without prejudice. See Rule 3(a), 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254. If Petitioner wishes to proceed with this case, he must submit, no later than June 9, 2011, a copy of this Order with the $5.00 fee or with adequate proof of his inability to pay the fee.

FAILURE TO USE PROPER FORM

Additionally, a Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus must be submitted in accordance with the Local Rules of the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. See Rule 2(d), 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254. In order to comply with the Local Rules, the petition must be submitted upon a court-approved form and in accordance with the instructions approved by the Court. Id.; S. D. CAL. CIVLR HC.2(b). Presently, Petitioner has not submitted the application for a writ of habeas corpus on a court-approved form. A court-approved amended petition form will be sent to Petitioner along with a copy of this Order.

FAILURE TO SIGN PETITION

Rule 2(c) of the Rules Governing Section 2254 Cases provides that "[t]he petition must be printed, typewritten or legibly handwritten; and be signed under penalty of perjury by the petitioner or by a person authorized to sign it for the petitioner under 28 U.S.C. § 2242." Rule 2(c), 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254 (emphasis added). Here, although Petitioner has signed his declaration in support of the in forma pauperis application under penalty of perjury, he has not signed the Petition itself under penalty of perjury.

FAILURE TO NAME PROPER RESPONDENT

Review of the Petition reveals that Petitioner has failed to name a proper respondent. On federal habeas, a state prisoner must name the state officer having custody of him as the respondent. Ortiz-Sandoval v. Gomez, 81 F.3d 891, 894 (9th Cir. 1996) (citing Rule 2(a), 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254). "Typically, that person is the warden of the facility in which the petitioner is incarcerated." Id. Federal courts lack personal jurisdiction when a habeas petition fails to name a proper respondent. See id.

The warden is the typical respondent. However, "the rules following section 2254 do not specify the warden." Id. "[T]he 'state officer having custody' may be 'either the warden of the institution in which the petitioner is incarcerated . . . or the chief officer in charge of state penal institutions.'" Id. (quoting Rule 2(a), 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254 advisory committee's note). If "a petitioner is in custody due to the state action he is challenging, '[t]he named respondent shall be the state officer who has official custody of the petitioner (for example, the warden of the prison).'" Id. (quoting Rule 2, 28 U.S.C. foll. § 2254 advisory committee's note).

Here, Petitioner has named the City and County of San Diego as Respondents. A long standing rule in the Ninth Circuit holds "that a petitioner may not seek [a writ of] habeas corpus against the State under . . . [whose] authority . . . the petitioner is in custody. The actual person who is [the] custodian [of the petitioner] must be the respondent." Ashley v. Washington, 394 F.2d 125, 126 (9th Cir. 1968). This requirement exists because a writ of habeas corpus acts upon the custodian of the state prisoner, the person who will produce "the body" if directed to do so by the Court. "Both the warden of a California prison and the Director of Corrections for California have the power to produce the prisoner." Ortiz-Sandoval, 81 F.3d at 895.

In order for this Court to entertain the Petition filed in this action, Petitioner must name the warden in charge of the correctional facility in which Petitioner is presently confined or the Director of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. ...


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