United States District Court, W.D. Tennessee, Eastern Division
ORDER DISMISSING COMPLAINT, CERTIFYING AN APPEAL
WOULD NOT BE TAKEN IN GOOD FAITH AND NOTIFYING PLAINTIFF OF
APPELLATE FILING FEE
D. TODD UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
August 29, 2019, Plaintiff Larry Carnell Pittman, who is
incarcerated at the South Central Correctional Facility in
Clifton, Tennessee, filed a pro se complaint
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and a motion to proceed
in forma pauperis. (ECF Nos. 1 & 2.) The Court
issued an order on August 30, 2019, granting leave to proceed
in forma pauperis and assessing the civil filing fee
pursuant to the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA), 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915(a)-(b). (ECF No. 4.) The Clerk shall
record the Defendants as the City of Jackson, Tennessee;
Julian Wiser, Chief of the Jackson Police Department (JPD);
Daryl Hubbard, Jackson City Court Clerk; and JPD Sergeant
complaint concerns his November 28, 2005, arrest for robbing
the Lone Star Steakhouse in Jackson at knifepoint earlier on
the evening of November 27th. He first alleges he was
arrested without a warrant by Defendant Henson and that $4,
700 in cash was taken from him without being catalogued or
stored in compliance with the Tennessee Rules of Evidence. He
contends the money was given to Lone Star because of
Henson's “unfounded speculation” that it was
proceeds from the robbery. (ECF No. 1 at PageID 4-5.) Pittman
further complains about certain aspects of the investigation,
alleging he was arrested without having been identified by
any witness to the robbery and that no knife or mask was
found on his person. Additionally, he contends no search
warrant was issued for his home and that his clothing was not
seized as evidence. (Id. at PageID 5.)
alleges that an arrest warrant and/or Affidavit of Complaint
was issued shortly after his arrest but that it was not
signed by the affiant under oath before a judge, magistrate
or clerk and was not properly entered into the court records.
(Id.; see also ECF No. 1-1, Ex. A at PageID
13.) He contends his detention based on the warrant was
illegal and violated his right to due process of law. (ECF
No. 1 at PageID 4.) Pittman asserts that Defendants Hubbard
and Wiser, as representatives of the City of Jackson, failed
to properly train Defendant Henson on how to obtain a valid
seeks both declaratory relief and monetary damages.
(Id. at PageID 6.) The Court is required to screen
prisoner complaints and to dismiss any complaint, or any
portion thereof, if the complaint__
frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted; or
seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from
such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b); see also 28
U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
assessing whether the complaint in this case states a claim
on which relief may be granted, the standards under
Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), as stated in Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 677-79 (2009), and in Bell
Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-57 (2007),
are applied. Hill v. Lappin, 630 F.3d 468, 470-71
(6th Cir. 2010). The Court accepts the complaint's
“well-pleaded” factual allegations as true and
then determines whether the allegations “plausibly
suggest an entitlement to relief.'” Williams v.
Curtin, 631 F.3d 380, 383 (6th Cir. 2011) (quoting
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 681). Conclusory allegations
“are not entitled to the assumption of truth, ”
and legal conclusions “must be supported by factual
allegations.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679. Although
a complaint need only contain “a short and plain
statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled
to relief, ” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2), Rule 8 nevertheless
requires factual allegations to make a
“‘showing,' rather than a blanket assertion,
of entitlement to relief.” Twombly, 550 U.S.
at 555 n.3.
se complaints are to be held ‘to less stringent
standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers,' and
should therefore be liberally construed.”
Williams, 631 F.3d at 383 (quoting Martin v.
Overton, 391 F.3d 710, 712 (6th Cir. 2004)). Pro
se litigants, however, are not exempt from the
requirements of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
Wells v. Brown, 891 F.2d 591, 594 (6th Cir. 1989);
see also Brown v. Matauszak, 415 Fed.Appx. 608, 612,
613 (6th Cir. Jan. 31, 2011) (affirming dismissal of pro
se complaint for failure to comply with “unique
pleading requirements” and stating “a court
cannot ‘create a claim which [a plaintiff] has not
spelled out in his pleading'” (quoting Clark v.
Nat'l Travelers Life Ins. Co., 518 F.2d 1167, 1169
(6th Cir. 1975))).
filed his complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, which
Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance,
regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory or
the District of Columbia, subjects, or causes to be
subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person
within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any
rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution
and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action
at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for
redress . . . .
state a claim under § 1983, a plaintiff must allege two
elements: (1) a deprivation of rights secured by the
“Constitution and laws” of the United States (2)
committed by a defendant acting under color of state law.
Adickes v. S.H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 150
claims are untimely. The statute of limitations for a §
1983 action is the “state statute of limitations
applicable to personal injury actions under the law of the
state in which the § 1983 claim arises.”
Eidson v. Tenn. Dep't of Children's Servs.,
510 F.3d 631, 634 (6th Cir. 2007); see also Wilson v.
Garcia, 471 U.S. 261, 275-76 (1985). The limitations
period for § 1983 actions arising in Tennessee is the
one-year limitations provision found in Tenn. Code Ann.
§ 28-3-104(a)(1)(B). Roberson v. Tennessee, 399
F.3d 792, 794 (6th Cir. 2005). Pittman was arrested on
November 28, 2005. This case was filed on August 29, 2019,
almost fourteen years later.
regarding Pittman's claim concerning the allegedly
defective warrant and/or Affidavit of Complaint, on April 23,
2019, he filed a motion to intervene in Cox, et al. v.
City of Jackson, Tennessee, No. 1:19-cv-1026-JDB-jay
(W.D. Tenn. filed Feb. 11, 2019). Cox is a §
1983 case the plaintiffs therein seek to maintain as a class
action; however, no class yet has been certified. The amended
complaint in Cox alleges that certain warrants
issued in Jackson City Court were not properly sworn and thus
were invalid and violated the plaintiffs' rights under
the Fourth Amendment. See No. 19-1026, Am. Compl.,
ECF No. 33 at PageID 148. Pittman seeks to intervene on the
ground that the ...