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Valentine v. Drew

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK


February 16, 2007

PERCIVAL VALENTINE, PLAINTIFF,
v.
D.B. DREW AND KATHY SNYDER, DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gary L. Sharpe U.S. District Judge

MEMORANDUM-DECISION AND ORDER

After Percival Valentine filed a § 1983 action for violation of his First Amendment rights, see Dkt. No. 1; see also 42 U.S.C. § 1983, his complaint was referred to Magistrate Judge Randolph F. Treece for report and recommendation.*fn1 See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A), (B); N.D.N.Y. R. 72.3(c); Gen. Order No. 12, § D(1)(G). Subsequently, Judge Treece issued a report recommending that the complaint be dismissed. See Report-Recommendation ("R&R"), Dkt. No. 29.*fn2

Broadly construing Valentine's complaint, Judge Treece concluded the following: (1) the complaint may be construed against the defendants in their individual capacities; (2) Valentine failed to establish actual injury to show that he is not pursuing a frivolous claim; and (3) regardless, he was not denied reasonable access to adequate legal materials. As to this last point, Judge Treece noted that while federal prisons are not required to maintain state law materials, the prison did provide the Maryland and Atlantic 2d Reporters as well as an array of federal materials, a legal aid program and access to an inmate law clerk.

Valentine has now filed timely objections to Judge Treece's report. See Dkt. No. 30. Valentine's sole specific objection will be reviewed under a de novo standard, while the remainder of his objections are unspecific and will be reviewed under a clearly erroneous standard. See Almonte v. N.Y. State Div. of Parole, 9:04-CV-484, 2006 WL 149049 (N.D.N.Y. Jan. 18, 2006). Upon careful consideration of the arguments, the relevant parts of the record, and the applicable law, the court adopts the Report-Recommendation in its entirety.

Valentine's sole specific objection challenges Judge Treece's observation concerning his failure to name the defendants in their individual capacities. However, this objection misquotes the report. Specifically, Judge Treece states that while Valentine does not name the defendants either way, the suit "may proceed against the defendants in their individual capacities." Therefore, Valentine's objection is moot.

The remainder of Valentine's objections do not specifically address Judge Treece's factual or legal conclusions. Instead, Valentine has simply repeated the facts and arguments contained in his original motion papers.

His objections contain no new analysis or arguments, nor do they cite authority in support of what are otherwise mere conclusory claims. Given the inadequacy of Valentine's objections, he has procedurally defaulted. See Almonte, 2006 WL 149049, at *4. Accordingly, the court has reviewed Judge Treece's report and recommendation for clear error. See id. at *6. Having discerned none, the court adopts the report and recommendation in its entirety.

WHEREFORE, for the foregoing reasons, it is hereby ORDERED that Judge Treece's August 23, 2006 Report-Recommendation (Dkt. No. 29) is accepted and adopted in its entirety; and it is further

ORDERED that defendants' motion to dismiss or in the alternative summary judgment (Dkt. No. 20) is GRANTED and the complaint DISMISSED IN ITS ENTIRETY; and it is further

ORDERED that the Clerk of the Court provide copies of this Order to the parties.

IT IS SO ORDERED.


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