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WILLIAMS v. CAPTAIN ROJA

United States District Court, S.D. New York


June 7, 2005.

WESLEY WILLIAMS, Plaintiff,
v.
CAPTAIN ROJA, ASSISTANT DEPUTY WARDEN DIAZ, CORRECTION OFFICER MARCEL 1564, C.O. JACOBS 13044, C.O. JORDAN, C.O. HARRIS, C.O. COOPER, and THE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS Defendants.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: RICHARD BERMAN, District Judge

DECISION & ORDER

I. Background

On or about December 29, 2004, Wesley Williams ("Plaintiff" or "Williams"), proceeding pro se, filed an application for the appointment of counsel in this case. United States Chief Magistrate Judge Andrew J. Peck denied this application without prejudice by order, dated January 10, 2005 ("Order"). By letter, dated March 24, 2005, Plaintiff renewed his application for the appointment of counsel ("Application"), contending that he needs help with "the legal x's and o's" of trying his case. (Application at 1).

  For the reasons set forth below, the Application is denied.

  II. Standard of Review

  "Unlike criminal defendants . . . indigents filing civil actions have no Constitutional right to counsel." Santiago v. Duarte, No. 98 Civ. 6271, 1999 WL 118109, at *1 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 5, 1999). "The court may request an attorney to represent any person unable to afford counsel." 28 U.S.C. ยง 1915(e)(1).

  The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has advised that courts should not grant appointment of counsel indiscriminately, noting that "volunteer lawyer time is a precious commodity." Cooper v. A. Sargenti Co., 877 F.2d 170, 172 (2d Cir. 1989); see also Hendricks v. Coughlin, 114 F.3d 390, 393 (2d Cir. 1997). At the outset, a district court, "should first determine whether the indigent's position seems likely to be of substance." Hodge v. Police Officers, 802 F.2d 58, 61 (2d Cir. 1986).

  III. Analysis

  The Court has reviewed the record herein, including, among other things, Plaintiff's Request for Production of Documents, received February 8, 2005, and Exhibits and Witnesses for Trial, dated March 21, 2005, and concludes that, since the issuance of Magistrate Peck's Order, Plaintiff's submissions have not demonstrated that Plaintiff's case seems "likely to be of substance." See Hodge, 802 F.2d at 61.*fn1

  IV. Conclusion & Order

  For the foregoing reasons, Plaintiff's Application is denied.

  Plaintiff may wish to pursue other sources for obtaining counsel, such as the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Legal Referral Service, at (212) 626-7373. Plaintiff may also avail himself of the services of the Court's pro se office at 500 Pearl Street, New York City 10007.


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