UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
January 20, 2012
FRESNO COUNTY SUPERIOR COURT, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Lawrence J. O'Neill United States District Judge
AMENDED ORDER TO ADOPT FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS RECOMMENDING THAT COMPLAINT BE DISMISSED FOR FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH COURT RULES
(Docs. 51 and 71)
On December 13, 2011, this Court entered an order that, among other things, declared Plaintiff a vexatious litigant and ordered that all subsequent complaints brought by Plaintiff be lodged and screened prior to filing. Plaintiff responded by filing frivolous and malicious motions in six long-closed cases. Accordingly, the Court hereby amends its order nunc pro tunc.
On October 21, 2011, Magistrate Judge Sandra M. Snyder ordered Plaintiff Janetta L. Sconiers and counsel Ralston L. Courtney to appear at a hearing on November 16, 2011, to show cause why this matter should not be dismissed for failure to comply with F.R.Civ.P. 8 and 11, and sanctions imposed. Neither Plaintiff nor counsel appeared. On November 23, 2011, the Magistrate Judge filed Findings and Recommendations recommending that this case be dismissed, counsel be fined and reprimanded, and Plaintiff be declared a vexatious litigant subject to pre-filing review.
On December 12, 2011, Plaintiff filed objections and exhibits totaling 295 pages. Plaintiff's objections did not address the application of F.R.Civ.P. 8 and 11 to the complaint in this matter.
In accordance with the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 636 (b)(1)(C), this Court has conducted a de novo review of this case. Having carefully reviewed the entire file, the Court finds the Findings and Recommendations to be supported by the record and proper analysis.
Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the Findings and Recommendations, filed November 23, 2011, are adopted in full. Specifically,
1. This matter is hereby dismissed with prejudice for failure to comply with F.R.Civ.P. 8 and 11.
2. Plaintiff's attorney, Ralston Courtney, is hereby sanctioned pursuant to F.R.Civ.P. 11 for failing to conduct a reasonable and competent inquiry regarding (a) Plaintiff's motives for proceeding with the complaint; (b) the legal sufficiency of the asserted claims; and (c) the factual sufficiency of the asserted claims. As penalty, Courtney is ordered to pay $5000.00 to the Court's Nonappropriated Fund.
3. Courtney is hereby reprimanded for his conduct in this matter, which degraded and impugned the integrity of this Court and interfered with its administration of justice.
4. The Clerk of Court is directed to send a copy of this Order and the underlying Findings and Recommendations to Office of Chief Trial Counsel/Intake, The State Bar of California, 1149 South Hill Street, Los Angeles, California 90015-2299.
5. Plaintiff Janetta Sconiers is hereby sanctioned pursuant to F.R.Civ.P. 11 for her failure to conduct a reasonable and competent inquiry regarding the legal and factual sufficiency of her claims, and for her determination to file repetitive claims intended to harass the individuals named as defendants.
a. Plaintiff is declared to be a vexatious litigant.
b. On or after the date of this order, Plaintiff shall pay the filing fee in all actions initiated in propria persona or by legal counsel on her behalf.
c. Upon presentation by Plaintiff or any attorney acting on her behalf on or after the date of the Court's order of any complaint, motion, or other document for filing, the Clerk of Court shall lodge the complaint, motion, or document pending its review by the Chief District Judge or such judge as he or she may designate to ensure that the complaint, motion, or document is neither frivolous nor malicious and that it states claims cognizable in this Court. No complaint, motion, or document shall be filed prior to such screening and approval.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
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