IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
March 5, 2012
GREGORY C. BONTEMPS, PLAINTIFF,
SOTAK, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.
Plaintiff is a state prisoner proceeding without counsel in an action brought under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He requests that the court appoint counsel. District courts lack authority to require counsel to represent indigent prisoners in section 1983 cases. Mallard v. United States Dist. Court, 490 U.S. 296, 298 (1989). In exceptional circumstances, the court may request counsel voluntarily to represent such a plaintiff. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1); Terrell v. Brewer, 935 F.2d 1015, 1017 (9th Cir. 1991); Wood v. Housewright, 900 F.2d 1332, 1335-36 (9th Cir. 1990). When determining whether "exceptional circumstances" exist, the court must consider the likelihood of success on the merits as well as the ability of the plaintiff to articulate his claims pro se in light of the complexity of the legal issues involved. Palmer v. Valdez, 560 F.3d 965, 970 (9th Cir. 2009). The court finds there are no exceptional circumstances in this case.
Accordingly, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiff's February 24, 2012 motion for appointment of counsel is denied.
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