United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER AND FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
F. BRENNAN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
is a state prisoner proceeding without counsel in this action
brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. He seeks an order
from this court compelling prison officials to grant him
access to the prison law library. ECF No. 18. For the reasons
that follow, the motion should be denied.
March 2, 2017, plaintiff filed a motion asking the court to
compel various prison officials to grant him access to the
law library. ECF No. 18. He alleged that law librarian
Dennely was not putting him on the list of prisoners
authorized to use the library. Id. Plaintiff
attached to the motion various documents from his
administrative appeals regarding his lack of access to the
library. One such document indicates that plaintiff was
denied access to the library on February 6, 2017 due to
Dennely's administrative error. Id. at 5.
Dennely noted that the error had been fixed and plaintiff was
on the list as a “general library user” or
“GLU” until March 8, 2017. Id. Another
such document indicates that custody staff failed to escort
plaintiff to the library on February 12, 2017. Id.
court ordered defense counsel to inquire into the status of
plaintiff s law library access. ECF No. 30. Counsel responded
that plaintiff had been granted GLU status from January 4,
2017 to April 7, 2017 and Priority Law User (PLU) status from
June 6, 2017 through June 26, 2017. Counsel did not respond
to plaintiffs claims that, despite his authorization to use
the library as a GLU, plaintiff had been denied physical
has recently submitted an informative filing from which it
appears that (with the exception of the dates in February)
plaintiff has been able to access the law library, at least
within the last month or so. ECF No. 34.
asks for a preliminary injunction or temporary restraining
order. ECF No. 18. Such an order may be issued upon a showing
“that immediate and irreparable injury, loss, or damage
will result to the movant before the adverse party can be
heard in opposition.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 65(b)(1)(A);
Haw. County Green Party v. Clinton, 980 F.Supp.
1160, 1164 (D. Haw. 1997)(“The standards for granting a
temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction are
identical.”); cf. Stuhlbarg Int'l Sales Co. v.
John D. Brush & Co., 240 F.3d 832, 839 n.7 (9th Cir.
2001) (observing that an analysis of a preliminary injunction
is “substantially identical” to an analysis of a
temporary restraining order). The purpose of the order is to
preserve the status quo and to prevent irreparable harm
“just so long as is necessary to hold a hearing, and no
longer.” Granny Goose Foods, Inc. v. Brotherhood of
Teamsters, 415 U.S. 423, 439 (1974).
order to be entitled to preliminary injunctive relief, a
party must demonstrate “that he is likely to succeed on
the merits, that he is likely to suffer irreparable harm in
the absence of preliminary relief, that the balance of
equities tips in his favor, and that an injunction is in the
public interest.” Stormans, Inc. v. Selecky,
586 F.3d 1109, 1127 (9th Cir. 2009) (citing Winter v.
Natural Res. Def. Council, Inc., 555 U.S. 7, 129 S.Ct.
365, 172 L.Ed.2d 249 (2008)). Plaintiffs motion does not meet
this standard. It addresses conduct that is not a subject of
this action, and therefore fails to demonstrate either a
likelihood of success on the merits or a serious question on
the merits. Generally, such allegations must be pursued
through the prison administrative process and then litigated
in a separate action. See McKinney v. Carey, 311
F.3d 1198, 1199-1201 (9th Cir. 2002) (per curiam) and
Rhodes v. Robinson, 621 F.3d 1002, 1004-07 (9th Cir.
2010) (together holding that claims must be exhausted prior
to the filing of the original or supplemental complaint);
Jones v. Felker, No. CIV S-08-0096 KJM EFB P, 2011
U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13730, at *11-15, 2011 WL 533755 (E.D. Cal.
Feb. 11, 2011).
court does have some authority to intervene regarding conduct
unrelated to the complaint under The All Writs Act. That Act
gives federal courts the authority to issue “all writs
necessary or appropriate in aid of their respective
jurisdictions and agreeable to the usages and principles of
law.” 28 U.S.C. 1651(a). The United States Supreme
Court has authorized the use of the All Writs Act in
appropriate circumstances against persons who, “though
not parties to the original action or engaged in wrongdoing,
are in a position to frustrate the implementation of a court
order or the proper administration of justice.”
United States v. N.Y.Tel. Co., 434 U.S. 159 (1977).
To obtain an order under the All Writs Act, the requested
order must be “necessary.” This language requires
that the relief requested is not available through some
alternative means. Clinton v. Goldsmith, 526 U.S.
appears that, beyond the two documented instances in February
2017, plaintiff has been provided with access to the law
library, the requested order does not appear to be currently
necessary. Accordingly, the motion should be denied without
prejudice to any subsequent motion plaintiff may file should
his access to the library again be denied.
Order and Recommendation
hereby ORDERED that the Clerk of Court randomly assign a
United States District Judge to this action.
for the reasons set forth above, it is hereby RECOMMENDED
that plaintiffs March 2, 2017 motion for ...