United States District Court, D. Nevada
JEFFERY D. SLOCUM, Plaintiff,
BRIAN WILLIAMS, SR. et al., Defendants.
HOFFMAN, JR. UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
before the Court is pro se incarcerated Plaintiff Jeffery D.
Slocum's motion for an order to correct (ECF No. 29),
filed on December 18, 2017. Defendants filed a response (ECF
No. 33) on January 2, 2018. Plaintiff did not file a reply.
before the Court is Plaintiff's motion to produce names
of defendants (ECF No. 30), filed on December 27, 2017.
Defendants filed a response (ECF No. 34) on January 9, 2018.
Plaintiff did not file a reply.
before the Court is Plaintiff's motion for appointment of
counsel (ECF No. 31), filed on December 29, 2017. No.
response has been filed.
before the Court is Plaintiff's motion to amend complaint
(ECF No. 42), filed on March 8, 2018. Defendants filed a
response (ECF No. 44) on March 16, 2018, and Plaintiff filed
a reply (ECF No. 46) on March 22, 2018.
Motion to Correct
moves the Court to “correct its false information on
Defendant R. Thompson.” Plaintiff alleges that counsel
for Defendants has falsely claimed that Mr. Thompson is no
longer employed by the Nevada Department of Corrections
(“NDOC”), and asks that the Court order
Defendants' counsel to submit the “true identity
and facts of employment of Defendant C/O R. Thompson.”
for Defendants acknowledges that, when he first spoke with
Plaintiff about Defendant Thompson, he believed that Mr.
Thompson was no longer employed by NDOC, but argues that,
upon Plaintiff's suggestion to the contrary, counsel made
further inquiries with NDOC and identified an employee named
Ronnie Thompson, and provided his address to the Court under
seal for service. Defendants argue that Plaintiff personally
served Ronnie Thompson on December 12, 2017, and Mr. Thompson
is now being represented by the Office of the Attorney
General. The Court has issued a sealed summons as to Mr.
Thompson (ECF No. 27). Given Defendants representations, and
the executed summons, it appears that any inaccuracy
regarding Mr. Thompson has been addressed, and there is no
correction to be made. The Court will therefore deny this
Motion to Produce Names of Defendants
moved on December 18, 2017 for the Court to order Defendants
to produce the contact information for the Defendants named
in Plaintiff's complaint. Plaintiff brings this motion
under Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(a)(1)(A)(i), which governs the duties
of parties to make initial disclosures of each individual
likely to have discoverable information. However, as made
clear in Rule 26(a)(1)(A) and 26(a)(1)(B), actions brought
without an attorney by an incarcerated person are not subject
to the initial disclosure argument. Plaintiff's request
must therefore be brought during the discovery period via a
discovery request. At the time of this motion, the Court had
not yet entered a scheduling order, so the motion is
premature. The Court will therefore deny this motion.
Motion for Appointment of Counsel
also moves for appointment of counsel for this case. However,
civil litigants do not have a Sixth Amendment right to
appointed counsel. Storseth v. Spellman, 654 F.2d
1349, 1353 (9th Cir. 1981). In very limited circumstances,
federal courts are empowered to request an attorney to
represent an indigent civil litigant. For example, courts
have discretion, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1), to
“request” that an attorney represent indigent
civil litigants upon a showing of “exceptional
circumstances.” Ageyman v. Corrections Corp. of
America, 390 F.3d 1101, 1103 (9th Cir. 2004). The
circumstances in which a court will make such a request,
however, are exceedingly rare and require a finding of
extraordinary circumstances. United States v. 30.64 Acres
of Land, 795 F.2d 796, 799-800 (9th Cir. 1986). The
difficulties inherent in proceeding pro se do not qualify as
exceptional circumstances. Housewright, 900 F.2d
1332, 1335-1336 (9th Cir. 1990).
determine whether the “exceptional circumstances”
necessary for appointment of counsel are present, courts
evaluate (1) the likelihood of plaintiff's success on the
merits and (2) the plaintiff's ability to articulate his
claim pro se “in light of the complexity of
the legal issues involved.” Agyeman, 390 F.3d
at 1103 (quoting Wilborn v. Escalderon, 789 F.2d
1328, 1331 (9th Cir. 1986)). Neither of these factors is
dispositive and both must be viewed together.
Wilborn, 789 F.2d at 1331.
Plaintiff argues that he is unable retain counsel despite
diligent attempts to do so. Plaintiff also argues that
because he is incarcerated, he is at a disadvantage because
he is not able to review his own medical records, or review
electronic or digital media, which he argues will be very
important to this case. Plaintiff also argues that since he
is not a legal expert, he would benefit from appointment of
counsel. However, as noted above, the inherent difficulty of
proceeding pro se do not by themselves constitute exceptional
circumstances. Plaintiff has not articulated any reason ...