United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER AND FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
ALLISON CLAIRE, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
is a state prisoner proceeding pro se with a civil rights
action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
alleges that his Fourteenth Amendment rights were violated
when defendant Bernal, a superior court judge in Plumas
County, admitted inadmissible evidence. ECF No. 1 at 3-13. He
seeks release from prison and recusal or disqualification of
defendant from any matters in which plaintiff appears.
Id. at 3, 13.
Failure to State a Claim
Defendant Is Immune
any action brought against a judicial officer [under §
1983] for an act or omission taken in such officer's
judicial capacity, injunctive relief shall not be granted
unless a declaratory decree was violated or declaratory
relief was unavailable.” 28 U.S.C. § 1983.
Bernal's ruling on the admissibility of evidence falls
squarely within the scope of activity performed in his
judicial capacity, and there is no indication that this
action falls within § 1983's narrow exception to
judicial immunity. Defendant Bernal is therefore immune from
liability and the claims against him must be dismissed. B.
Scope of § 1983 State prisoners may not attack
the fact or length of their confinement in a § 1983
action and “habeas corpus is the appropriate
remedy” for such claims. Preiser v. Rodriguez,
411 U.S. 475, 490 (1973); Nettles v. Grounds, 830
F.3d 922, 930 (9th Cir. 2016) (holding that habeas corpus is
“available only for state prisoner claims that lie at
the core of habeas (and is the exclusive remedy for such
claims), while § 1983 is the exclusive remedy for state
prisoner claims that do not lie at the core of
habeas”). Here, plaintiff requests that his conviction
be vacated and he be immediately released from prison. ECF
No. 1 at 3. Accordingly, this claim lies directly within the
core of habeas corpus because he is challenging the validity
of his continued confinement and a favorable determination
would result in his speedier release. These allegations fail
to state cognizable claims for relief under § 1983 and
must be dismissed.
court declines to offer plaintiff the option to convert his
claims to an action for habeas corpus relief. Habeas
petitions may be filed in the district of confinement or
conviction, 28 U.S.C. § 2241(d), and based on the
information provided in the complaint and attachments,
plaintiff's claims relate to his capital conviction out
of Alameda County (id. at 6, 15-16, 24) and he is
currently incarcerated in Marin County, both of which are
situated in the Northern District of California, 28 U.S.C.
§ 84(a). Therefore, if plaintiff wishes to challenge his
conviction or sentence, he will need to do so by filing a
petition in the United States District Court for the Northern
District of California.
No Leave to Amend
to amend should be granted if it appears possible that the
defects in the complaint could be corrected, especially if a
plaintiff is pro se. Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122,
1130-31 (9th Cir. 2000) (en banc); Cato v. United
States, 70 F.3d 1103, 1106 (9th Cir. 1995) (“A pro
se litigant must be given leave to amend his or her
complaint, and some notice of its deficiencies, unless it is
absolutely clear that the deficiencies of the complaint could
not be cured by amendment.” (citing Noll v.
Carlson, 809 F.2d 1446, 1448 (9th Cir. 1987))). However,
if, after careful consideration, it is clear that a complaint
cannot be cured by amendment, the court may dismiss without
leave to amend. Cato, 70 F.3d at 1005-06.
undersigned finds that, for the reasons explained above, the
complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief may be
granted and that amendment would be futile. The complaint
should therefore be dismissed without leave to amend.
Plain Language Summary of this Order for a Pro Se
claims should be dismissed because even if they are true, the
defendant is immune to suit under § 1983. The court will
not convert your complaint to a habeas petition because if
you want to bring a habeas petition, you need to file it in