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Bell v. Statum

United States District Court, M.D. Tennessee, Nashville

January 11, 2018

OWEN BELL Plaintiff,
v.
FRED C. STATUM, III and MANIER& HEROD Defendants.

          Crenshaw Chief Judge.

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          JEFFERY S. FRENSLEY U.S. Magistrate Judge.

         Pending before the Court is the Motion of Fred C. Statum, III and Manier & Herod to Dismiss Complaint For Lack Of Subject Matter Jurisdiction (Docket No. 7) along with supporting memorandum of law (Docket No. 8) in which the Defendants move to dismiss the complaint for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. Plaintiff has responded to the motion by filing a Motion to Quash the 27 July 2017 Motion of Fred Statum III for Dismissal of this Case along with numerous attachments (Docket No. 11) and Memorandum in Support of Motion to Quash the 27 July 2017 Motion of Fred Statum III for Dismissal of this Case (Docket No. 12). For the reasons stated herein, the undersigned recommends that the Motion to Dismiss Complaint For Lack Of Subject Matter Jurisdiction be GRANTED.

         Relevant Facts

         Plaintiff brought this action against the defendant by the filing of a complaint the title of which is “OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE.” Docket No. 1. The allegations set forth in the Complaint are as follows in their entirety:

I believe that Fred Statum, III is fully aware of the multiple falsifications that were made by Mark Dietz during the 2014 Trial, No. 3:11-0674. I also believe that Fred Statum, advised Mark Dietz to vehemently deny making any falsifications, in order for him to continue to make hundreds of dollars per hour conjuring up deceitful ways to continue with his attempts to block the very apparent (obvious) adverse evidence of the falsifications. I believe that Mark Dietz are very fearful of the conclusions (verdicts) that a jury will make and the amount of monetary and punitive damages that the jury will award.
Fred Statum, III is willfully interfering with the legal process, Lawsuit No. 3:16-cv-02064, in which Owen Bell is trying to expose the falsifications made during the Mar 2014, No. 3: 11-0674. The trial against Owen Bell by Mark Dietz et al.

         Defendants Fred C. Statum III and Manier & Herod argue the Complaint, “is devoid of any mention of the grounds upon which this court can exercise subject matter jurisdiction. Docket No. 8, p. 2. They note, Plaintiff's “Complaint contains no mention, by statutory cite or otherwise, the basis upon which the Court can exercise subject matter jurisdiction” and “to the extent any cognizable cause of action is stated there is no allegation or indication it arises out of the Constitution, laws or treaties of the United States.” Id. Defendants further argue that there are no grounds for the court to exercise subject matter jurisdiction under the diversity analysis of 28 U.S.C. § 1332 or any other basis for subject matter jurisdiction. Id. at pp. 2-3. Because there is no subject matter jurisdiction the defendants assert the complaint should be dismissed. Id.

         Analysis

         The Court is required to construe the complaint in the light most favorable to the plaintiff and to accept all well-pleaded allegations of fact as being true. Collins v. Nagle, 892 F.2d 489, 493 (6th Cir. 1989). Despite the Court's responsibility to liberally construe the complaint in the plaintiff's favor, Amore than bare assertions of legal conclusions is ordinarily required to satisfy federal notice pleading requirements.@ Scheid v. Fanny Farmer Candy Shops, Inc., 859 F.2d 434, 436 (6th Cir. 1988). Accordingly, the Court does not have to accept as true mere legal conclusions and unwarranted inferences of fact. Morgan v. Churchs Fried Chicken, 829 F.2d 10, 12 (6th Cir. 1987).

         Finally, while pro se complaints are to be construed liberally (Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972)), that liberality does not allow a court to conjure up unpled facts. McFadden v. Lucas, 713 F.2d 143, 147 n.4 (5th Cir. 1983); Slotnick v. Staviskey, 560 F.2d 31, 33 (1st Cir. 1977), cert. denied, 434 U.S. 1077 (1978).

         Subject Matter Jurisdiction

         Federal district courts are courts of limited jurisdiction. Bender v. Williamsport Area Sch. Dist., 475 U.S. 534, 541 (1986) (citations omitted). "To determine whether a claim arises under federal law, a court, under the well-pleaded-complaint rule, generally looks only to the plaintiff's complaint." Gentek Building Products, Inc. v. Sherwin-Williams Co., 491 F.3d 320, 325 (6th Cir. 2007) (citing Palkow v. CSX Transp., Inc., 431 F.3d 543, 552 (6th Cir. 2005)). For jurisdictional purposes, a claim arises under federal law only where plaintiff's statement of the cause of action affirmatively shows that it is based on federal law. Beneficial Nat' L Bank v. Anderson, 539 U.S. 1, 6-8 (2003). “Federal question jurisdiction can be established by showing ‘federal law creates the cause of action or that the plaintiff[']s right to relief necessarily depends on resolution of a substantial question of federal law.'” Warthman v. Genoa Twp Board Trustees., 549 F.3d 1055, 1061 (6th Cir. 2008) (quoting Franchise Tax Board v. Constr. Laborers Vacation Trust of S. Cal., 463 U.S. 1, 27-28 (1983)).

         Diversity ...


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