United States District Court, M.D. Tennessee, Nashville Division
NEWBERN MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
WILLIAM L. CAMPBELL, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
before the Court is the Magistrate Judge's Report and
Recommendation (Doc. No. 11), recommending that the Court
grant Defendant's Motion to Dismiss (Doc. No. 7). The
pro se plaintiff filed objections (Doc. No. 12), and
Defendant responded to Plaintiff's objections (Doc. No.
13). The Magistrate Judge recommends the Complaint be
dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. After a
de novo review, and for the following reasons,
Plaintiff's objections are OVERRULED and the Report and
Recommendation is ADOPTED.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) and Local Rule 72.03(b)(3), a
district court reviews de novo any portion of a
report and recommendation to which a specific objection is
made. United States v. Curtis, 237 F.3d 598, 603
(6th Cir. 2001). General or conclusory objections are
insufficient. See Zimmerman v. Cason, 354 Fed.Appx.
228, 230 (6th Cir. 2009). Thus, “only those specific
objections to the magistrate's report made to the
district court will be preserved for appellate review.”
Id. (quoting Smith v. Detroit Fed'n of
Teachers, 829 F.2d 1370, 1373 (6th Cir. 1987)). In
conducting the review, the 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).
filed a complaint on December 6, 2018 (Doc. No. 1) seeking
the following relief: (1) stay a pending state court
proceedings “until the jury can overturn the court
order submitted”; and (2) “[o]verturn the [state]
court order filed May 31, 2018.” The Magistrate Judge
determined the Court does not have subject-matter
jurisdiction over Plaintiff's claims and recommended that
the Court dismiss the Complaint.
objected to the Report and Recommendation on the grounds that
the Magistrate Judge (1) “inaccurately presented the
case history”; (2) erred in dismissing the case for
lack of subject matter jurisdiction; (3) misapplied the
Rooker-Feldman Doctrine; and (4) erred in denying Plaintiff a
stay of the state court proceeding. (Doc. No. 12).
discussed thoroughly by the Magistrate Judge, the
Rooker-Feldman Doctrine prohibits lower federal courts from
exercising appellate review over state court judgments.
See District of Columbia Court of Appeals v.
Feldman, 460 U.S. 462 (1983) and Rooker v. Fidelity
Trust Co., 263 U.S. 413 (1923). The Doctrine applies
even if the party challenges the validity of the state court
judgment on constitutional grounds. Lawrence v.
Welch, 531 F.3d 364, 369 (6th Cir. 2008). In other
words, if the claim can only succeed to the extent the state
court wrongly decided the issues before it, the district
court does not have jurisdiction. Peterson Novelties,
Inc. v. City of Berkeley, 305 F.3d 386, 391 (6th Cir.
2002). Plaintiff's claims, which allege injury as a
result of a state court decision and ask the Court to stay
the state court proceeding and overturn the state court
decision, directly implicates Rooker-Feldman. Moreover, the
Supreme Court has explained that 28 U.S.C. § 1331
“does not authorize district courts to exercise
appellate jurisdiction over state-court judgments, which
Congress has reserved to this Court.” Verizon Md.,
Inc. v. Pub. Serv. Comm'n of Md., 535 U.S. 635, 644
does not cite specific examples of how the Magistrate Judge
“inaccurately presented the case history” or
explain how it impacted the jurisdiction analysis. As stated
above, based on the relief sought by Plaintiff, this Court
does not have subject matter jurisdiction to hear the claims
or to stay the state court proceeding.
Court has reviewed the Report and Recommendation and
concludes that it should be ADOPTED and
APPROVED. Accordingly, Defendant's
Motion to Dismiss is GRANTED. This Order
shall constitute ...