IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
December 14, 2011
RAYMOND D. JACKSON, PLAINTIFF,
STEVEN FLETCHER, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Kendall J. Newman United States Magistrate Judge
Plaintiff is a state prisoner, proceeding without counsel and in forma pauperis, in this civil rights action filed pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Pending before the court is plaintiff's motion for appointment of counsel filed December 8, 2011.
"In proceedings in forma pauperis, the district court 'may request an attorney to represent any person unable to afford counsel.' 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1). The decision to appoint such counsel is within 'the sound discretion of the trial court and is granted only in exceptional circumstances.' Franklin v. Murphy, 745 F.2d 1221, 1236 (9th Cir. 1984). A finding of the exceptional circumstances of the plaintiff seeking assistance requires at least an evaluation of the likelihood of the plaintiff's success on the merits and an evaluation of the plaintiff's ability to articulate his claims 'in light of the complexity of the legal issues involved.' Wilborn v. Escalderon, 789 F.2d 1328, 1331 (9th Cir. 1986) (quoting Weygandt v. Look, 718 F.2d 952, 954 (9th Cir. 1983))." Agyeman v. Corrections Corp. of America, 390 F.3d 1101, 1103 (9th Cir. 2004). "Neither of these factors is dispositive and both must be viewed together before reaching a decision on request of counsel under section 1915(d)." Wilborn, supra, 789 F.2d at 1331 (fn. omitted); see also, Terrell v. Brewer, 935 F.2d 1015, 1017 (9th Cir. 1991).
Plaintiff meets both criteria listed above. Plaintiff alleges that defendants violated the Eighth Amendment by providing inadequate medical care for his cancer which ultimately resulted in the amputation of his nose. Plaintiff has a chance of success as to this claim. In light of the complexity of this claim, appointment of counsel is warranted.
Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:
1. Plaintiff's motion for appointment of counsel (Dkt. No. 63) is granted; and
2. The Clerk of Court is directed to locate forthwith an attorney admitted to practice in this court who is willing to accept the appointment.
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