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John Lee Williams v. City of Fresno

April 4, 2012

JOHN LEE WILLIAMS
PLAINTIFF,
v.
CITY OF FRESNO, ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Michael J. Seng United States Magistrate Judge

ORDER DISMISSING PLAINTIFF'S COMPLAINT FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM (ECF No. 2) AMENDED COMPLAINT DUE WITHIN THIRTY DAYS

SCREENING ORDER

Plaintiff John Lee Williams ("Plaintiff") initiated this action by filing a pro se Complaint on June 20, 2011. (ECF No. 2.) Plaintiff's Complaint is before the Court for screening.

I. SCREENING REQUIREMENT

The in forma pauperis statute provides that "the court shall dismiss the case at any time if the court determines that . . . the action or appeal . . . fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted." 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii). A complaint must contain "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief . . . ." Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2). Detailed factual allegations are not required, but "[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice," Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009) (citing Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 127 S.Ct. 1955 (2007)), and courts "are not required to indulge unwarranted inferences," Doe I v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 572 F.3d 677, 681 (9th Cir. 2009) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted). While factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusion are not. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. at 1949.

II. FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS

Plaintiff names the City of Fresno and the Fresno Police Department as defendants in this action. Plaintiff's Complaint consists of a list of alleged wrongs inflicted on Plaintiff by Defendants. Plaintiff's alleges as follows:

Plaintiff first alleges that at some point between April 15 and April 30, 2011, the Defendant Fresno Police Department served a warrant on a residence Plaintiff had just visited. (Compl. at 1.) The police secured a perimeter, but did not detain Plaintiff. (Id.) As a result of Defendant's conduct, Plaintiff was labeled an informant and, as a result, he has suffered several attempts on his life and he and his family remain in imminent danger. (Id.)

In addition, unspecified defendants also have subjected Plaintiff to two traffic stops, one on August 28, 2010 and another on May 25, 2011. (Compl. at 2.) The police ran warrant checks on Plaintiff; they came back with negative results. (Id.) They also searched Plaintiff against his will. (Id.) On the first occasion, Plaintiff was given a citation for drug paraphernalia; on the second, he was arrested for possession of a knife. (Id.)

Plaintiff asks that the Court order Defendants to provide him with copies of all police incident reports, a public apology, and the name of the actual confidential informer. Plaintiff also asks for a TRO against Defendants and that he be appointed counsel, be checked for tracking devices, and be awarded $500,000,000 in damages.

III. ANALYSIS

A. Apparent Claims

Plaintiff does not refer to any law he believes Defendants violated. Assuming Plaintiff believes his constitutional rights were violated by police, the Court will construe his claims as though brought under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.*fn1

Section 1983 "provides a cause of action for the 'deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws' of the United States." Wilder v. Virginia Hosp. Ass'n, 496 U.S. 498, 508 (1990) (quoting 42 U.S.C. § 1983). Section 1983 is not itself a source of substantive rights, but merely provides a method for vindicating federal rights conferred elsewhere. Graham v. Connor, 490 U.S. 386, 393-94 (1989). To state a claim under ยง 1983, a plaintiff must allege two essential elements: (1) that a right secured by the Constitution or laws of the United States was violated, and (2) that the alleged violation was ...


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