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Jason Latrell Thomas v. D. Sheppard-Brooks

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


September 19, 2011

JASON LATRELL THOMAS,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
D. SHEPPARD-BROOKS, DEFENDANT.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Jennifer L. Thurston United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR APPOINTMENT OF COUNSEL (Doc. 106)

On September 16, 2011, Plaintiff filed a motion seeking the appointment of counsel. (Doc. 106.) Plaintiff is advised that he does not have a constitutional right to appointed counsel in this action, Rand v. Rowland, 113 F.3d 1520, 1525 (9th Cir. 1997), and that 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 (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. In determining whether "exceptional circumstances exist, a district court must evaluate both the likelihood of success on 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 quotations 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 neither complex nor exceptional. Without a reasonable method of securing and compensating counsel, the Court will seek volunteer counsel only in the most serious and exceptional cases. In addition, the Court does not find that it is clear that Plaintiff will succeed on the merits of his claims such that counsel is warranted. Nor does the Court find that Plaintiff is unable to adequately articulate his claims.

Accordingly, for all the reasons set forth above, it is HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiff's September 16, 2011 motion for the appointment of counsel (Doc. 106) is DENIED.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20110919

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