United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lafayette Division
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
B. WHITEHURST UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
the Court, on referral from the district judge, is a Motion
To Dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint filed by Defendant Judge
Alonzo Harris (“Harris”) [Rec. Doc. 36].
Plaintiff, after dismissal by the state court in an action
that was pending in the 27th Judicial District Court for the
Parish of St. Landry, State of Louisiana, in Civil Action No.
16-C-0977-A, sought to file this action herein against a
number of parish and state employees, including Judge Alonzo
Harris. Plaintiff brings suit against Harris, alleging that
plaintiff's property was taken by “fraudulent acts
by persons in authority.” [Rec. Doc. 1, ¶ 2(A)] He
seeks monetary damages against Judge Harris for
“sufficient compensation for two years of pain,
suffering, and time put forth trying to get this matter
Harris seeks to have this Court dismiss plaintiff's
claims against him.
Law and Analysis
claims that Judge Harris fraudulently seized his property in
connection with a state court action that was pending before
him in the 27th Judicial District Court.
Plaintiff's Original Complaint states that suit was filed
pursuant to federal question jurisdiction. [Rec. Doc. 1, p.
3, ¶ II] Because Plaintiff is a pro se litigant, the
Court must construe his pleadings liberally and apply a less
stringent standard than that which is applicable to
attorneys. Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519 (1972).
The Court determined that Plaintiff's claims were filed
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
claims against Judge Alonzo Harris are barred by judicial
immunity. For more than one hundred years, judges have been
held immune from liability for judicial acts done within
their jurisdiction. Stump v. Sparkman, 435 U.S. 349,
356 (1978) (citing Bradley v. Fisher, 80 U.S. 335
(1871)); Mays v. Sudderth, 97 F.3d 107, 110 (5th
Cir. 1996). "A judge, of whatever status in the judicial
hierarchy, is immune from suit for damages resulting from any
acts performed in [his or her] judicial role."
Ammons v. Baldwin, 705 F.2d 1445, 1447 (5th Cir.
1983) (citations omitted); accord Mays, 97 F.3d at
110-11. This judicial immunity applies even if a judge is
accused of acting maliciously or corruptly. Stump,
435 U.S. at 356-57; Mays, 97 F.3d at 110-11.
Judicial officers are absolutely immune from liability for
damages unless they are without jurisdiction. Mays,
97 F.3d at 111. Thus, to survive a Rule 12(b)(6) Motion to
Dismiss in the current case, Plaintiff must show that the
actions the Judge took were non-judicial. Burns v.
Mayes, 369 Fed.Appx. 526, 530 (5th Cir. 2010) (holding
that “it is only for those nonjudicial actions or for
actions that are taken ‘in the complete absence of all
jurisdiction' that judges do not enjoy such
Defendant argues, and this Court agrees, that applying these
authorities to the facts of this case, Plaintiff is unable to
satisfy the burden of pleading non-judicial acts and/or
actions that were taken with a complete absence of all
jurisdiction. To the contrary, a review of the Complaint
reveals that any allegations against the Judge involve
discretionary acts taken in his official capacity as a Judge
of the 27th Judicial District Court and there are no
allegations of any extra-judicial actions. Any actions taken
by Judge Harris regarding the Plaintiff's property was
within the court's sound discretion. Consequently, all
claims against Judge Harris are barred by the doctrine
absolute judicial immunity. For these reasons, all of
Plaintiff's claims against this defendant must be
dismissed for failure to state a claim upon which relief can
Conclusion and Recommendation
IT IS RECOMMENDED THAT that Defendant Alonzo Harris'
Motion to Dismiss [Rec. Doc. 36] be GRANTED, dismissing
plaintiff's claims against Alonzo Harris WITH PREJUDICE
for failing to state a claim upon which relief may be
the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C) and
Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b), parties aggrieved by this recommendation
have fourteen days from service of this report and
recommendation to file specific, written objections with the
Clerk of Court. A party may respond to another party's
objections within fourteen days after being served with of a
copy of any objections or responses to the district judge at
the time of filing.
to file written objections to the proposed factual findings
and/or the proposed legal conclusions reflected in the report
and recommendation within fourteen days following the date of
its service, or within the time frame authorized by
Fed.R.Civ.P. 6(b), shall bar an aggrieved party from
attacking either the factual findings or the legal
conclusions accepted by the district court, except ...