United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lafayette Division
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
B. WHITEHURST, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
se plaintiff Ronald James St. Julien, proceeding in
forma pauperis, filed the instant civil rights complaint
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983 on January 23, 2018. [Rec.
Doc. 1] His Complaint was stricken from the record on April
4, 2018, due to his failure to pay the filing fee or submit
an application to proceed in forma pauperis. [Rec.
Doc. 6] That order was vacated on July 3, 2018, and Plaintiff
was give thirty (30) days to comply with the Court's
order. [Rec. Doc. 11] On July 11, 2018, plaintiff filed an
Amended Complaint [Rec. Doc. 12] and Motion to Proceed in
forma pauperis [Rec. Doc. 13], which was granted on July 13,
2018 [Rec. Doc. 15].
time of the filing of this suit, Plaintiff was incarcerated
at the Iberia Parish Jail in New Iberia, Louisiana. He
complains that “tainted police officers employed by the
Parish of New Iberia LA were used to convict” him in
November 2013. He names only the Iberia Parish Government as
a defendant and seeks monetary damages, as well as
“full relief of conviction.” [Rec. Doc. 12, p. 4]
This complaint has been referred to the undersigned for
review, report, and recommendation in accordance with the
provisions of 28 U.S.C. §636 and the standing orders of
contends that in November 2013, “tainted” police
officers, employed by the Parish of New Iberia, submitted
evidence and statements to Judge Keith Comeaux, in the
Sixteenth Judicial District, that lead to his conviction. In
2016, these officers were convicted of federal crimes. Based
on the officers' convictions, plaintiff contends that his
civil rights were violated. Moreover, he argues that he was
never advised by the Court or by his public defender of his
right to post conviction relief.
Law and Analysis
prisoner is allowed to litigate a civil rights complaint
in forma pauperis, the district court should dismiss
the case if at any time it determines that the complaint is
frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim on which relief
may be granted, or seeks monetary relief against a defendant
who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2)(B); 28 U.S.C. § 1915A (stating that when a
prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity or one of
its employees, the court shall review the complaint as soon
as practicable and dismiss it if the court finds the
complaint frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim on
which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief against
a defendant who is immune from such relief); 42 U.S.C.A.
§ 1997e(c) (providing that a district court shall on its
own motion or the motion of any party dismiss a complaint by
a prisoner regarding prison conditions if the court is
satisfied the complaint is frivolous, malicious, fails to
state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks
monetary relief from an immune defendant).
is frivolous if it has no arguable basis in law or fact.
Nietzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 109 S.Ct. 1827,
104 L.Ed.2d 338 (1989). A claim has no arguable basis in law
if it is based on an indisputably meritless legal theory,
“such as if the complaint alleges the violation of a
legal interest which clearly does not exist.” Davis
v. Scott, 157 F.3d 1003, 1005 (5th Cir.1998) (quotation
omitted). A claim has no arguable basis in fact if
“after providing the plaintiff the opportunity to
present additional facts when necessary, the facts alleged
are clearly baseless.” Talib v. Gilley, 138
F.3d 211, 213 (5th Cir.1998).
district courts are required to construe in forma
pauperis complaints liberally, particularly in the
context of dismissals under § 1915(e)(2)(B), they are,
nonetheless, given broad discretion in determining when such
complaints are frivolous. Macias v. Raul A. (Unknown)
Badge No. 153, 23 F.3d 94, 97 (5th Cir.1994). A
complaint may not be dismissed under § 1915(d)(2)(B)
“simply because the court finds the plaintiff's
allegations unlikely.” Jolly v. Klein, 923
F.Supp. 931, 942-43 (S.D.Tex.1996). Nevertheless, a civil
rights plaintiff must support his claims with specific facts
demonstrating a constitutional deprivation and may not simply
rely on conclusory allegations. Schultea v. Wood, 47
F.3d 1427, 1433 (5th Cir.1995); see Wesson v.
Ogleby, 910 F.2d 278, 281 (5th Cir.1990) (“An
IFP complaint that recites bare legal conclusions,
with no suggestion of supporting facts, or that postulates
facts of an entirely fanciful nature, is a prime candidate
for dismissal under [§ 1915(d)(2)(B) ].”). The
district court is bound by the allegations in a
plaintiff's complaint and is “not free to speculate
that the plaintiff ‘might' be able to state a claim
if given yet another opportunity to add more facts to the
complaint.” Macias v. Raul A. (Unknown) Badge No.
153, 23 F.3d at 97.
district court is authorized to dismiss a claim as frivolous
if “it is clear from the face of a complaint filed in
forma pauperis that the claims asserted are barred by the
applicable statute of limitations.” Moore v.
McDonald, 30 F.3d 616, 620 (5th Cir. 1994); Gartrell
v. Gaylor, 981 F.2d 254, 256 (5th Cir. 1993). A district