Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Anderson v. Cameron

United States District Court, W.D. New York

May 23, 2017

GEORGE L. ANDERSON, Plaintiff,
v.
JANE C. CAMERON, TERESA J. MUCHA, JOE MARTENS, LANGDON MARSH, THOMAS C. JORLING, and HENRY G. WILLIAMS, Defendants.

          DECISION AND ORDER

          MICHAEL A. TELESCA United States District Judge

         I. Introduction

         Pro se plaintiff George L. Anderson (“plaintiff”) commenced the instant action on June 3, 2013, alleging that defendants unlawfully prevented him from operating a “grandfathered” gravel mining operation on his property in Chautauqua County, New York. On August 21, 2013, the Court entered a Decision and Order in which it granted plaintiff permission to proceed in forma pauperis and instructed him to file an amended complaint no later than September 23, 2013. Docket No. 4. Plaintiff was informed that if he failed to file an amended complaint, the Court would “proceed to further review fully the complaint, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B), against only those defendants named in the Caption and Parties to Action . . . [s]ection[s] of the complaint.” Id. at 8. Plaintiff failed to file an amended complaint, and the Court subsequently ordered that the complaint be served. Docket No. 8. Defendants Jane C. Cameron (“Cameron”), Joe Martens (“Martens”), and Teresa J. Mucha (“Mucha”) (collectively the “moving defendants”) filed a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim on March 27, 2014. Docket No. 10. The docket indicates that defendants Thomas C. Jorling, Langdon Marsh, and Henry G. Williams (collectively the “non-moving defendants”) were never served with the with the summons and complaint. Docket No. 9.

         On January 4, 2017, United States Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder issued a Report and Recommendation (“R&R”) (Docket No. 27) recommending that the moving defendants' motion to dismiss be granted. For the reasons discussed below, the Court adopts the findings set forth in the R&R and grants the motion to dismiss. In addition, the Court finds sua sponte pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915 that plaintiff has failed to state a claim as to Thomas C. Jorling, Langdon Marsh, and Henry G. Williams. As a result, the complaint is dismissed in its entirety.

         II. Discussion

         A. Standard of Review

         When specific objections are made to a magistrate judge's report and recommendation, the district judge makes a “de novo determination of those portions of the report or specified proposed findings or recommendations to which objection is made.” 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C). When only general objections are made to a magistrate judge's report and recommendation, the district judge reviews it for clear error or manifest injustice. E.g., Brown v. Peters, 1997 WL 599355, at *2-3 (N.D.N.Y. Sept. 22, 1997), aff'd, 175 F.3d 1007 (2d Cir. 1999). After conducting the appropriate review, the district court may “accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the findings or recommendations made by the magistrate judge.” 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C).

         B. Sua Sponte Dismissal of Plaintiff's Claims Against the Non-Moving Defendants

         As a threshold matter, the Court notes that Judge Schroeder limited his consideration to whether plaintiff had stated a claim as to the moving defendants. Judge Schroeder apparently mistakenly read the Court's August 21, 2013 Decision and Order as dismissing plaintiff's claims against the non-moving defendants. See Docket No. 27 at 4. However, review of the August 21, 2013 Decision and Order shows that the Court reserved decision on the adequacy of the claims against all the defendants listed in the caption, which includes non-moving defendants Langdon Marsh, Thomas C. Jorling, and Henry G. Williams. See Docket No. 4 at 7. The Court has reviewed those claims and determines that sua sponte dismissal is appropriate as to the non-moving defendants.

         Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B), the Court shall dismiss a case in which in forma pauperis status has been granted if, at any time, the Court determines that the action (i) is frivolous or malicious; (ii) fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted; or (iii) seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such relief. Section 1915 “provide[s] an efficient means by which a court can screen for and dismiss legally insufficient claims.” Abbas v. Dixon, 480 F.3d 636, 639 (2d Cir. 2007). “[S]ua sponte § 1915 . . . dismissal may occur and is in some cases preferable after service of process and expansion of the record.” Anderson v. Coughlin, 700 F.2d 37, 41 (2d Cir. 1983).

         In evaluating the complaint, the Court must accept as true all of the factual allegations and must draw all inferences in plaintiff's favor. See Larkin v. Savage, 318 F.3d 138, 139 (2d Cir. 2003). Moreover, “a court is obliged to construe [pro se] pleadings liberally, particularly when they allege civil rights violations.” McEachin v. McGuinnis, 357 F.3d 197, 200 (2d Cir. 2004). Nevertheless, even pleadings submitted pro se must meet the notice requirements of Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Wynder v. McMahon, 360 F.3d 73 (2d Cir. 2004).

         Here, the complaint contains no factual allegations whatsoever against non-moving defendants Langdon Marsh, Thomas C. Jorling, and Henry G. Williams. Indeed, the only times the non-moving defendants' names appear are in the case caption and list of parties. Moreover, plaintiff was given an opportunity to amend his complaint pursuant to the Court's August 21, 2013 Decision and Order and failed to do so. Under these circumstances, the Court finds that sua sponte dismissal of the claims against non-moving defendants Langdon Marsh, Thomas C. Jorling, and Henry G. Williams is appropriate.

         B. Plaintiff's Objections to the R&R

         Turning to plaintiff's claims against the moving defendants, plaintiff's objections to the R&R are nothing more than a reiteration of the arguments considered by Judge Schroeder. As a result, the ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.