United States District Court, D. Minnesota
Howard G. Jackson, Plaintiff,
State of Minnesota; United States; Donald Trump, President; Melissa Hortman, C.P.S./H.S.D. House Reps leader speaker; J. Harrington; T.B. Jones; K. Knutson; D. Ossell; T. Smith; H.S.D. Ham; H.S.D. Mark Gunter; P. Gazelka; C. Schumer; N. Pelosi; T. Walz; A. Klobuchar; and U.S. Senate, Defendants.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
R. THORSON UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Howard G. Jackson did not pay the filing fee for this matter,
instead applying for in forma pauperis
(“IFP”) status. (See Doc. No. 2.) That
IFP application is now before the Court and must be
considered before any other action may be taken in this
review, this Court concludes that Jackson qualifies
financially for IFP status. That said, an IFP application may
be denied and an action may be dismissed when an IFP
applicant has filed a complaint that fails to state a cause
of action on which relief may be granted. See 28
U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii); Atkinson v. Bohn,
91 F.3d 1127, 1128 (8th Cir. 1996) (per curiam); Carter
v. Schafer, 273 Fed. App'x 581, 582 (8th Cir. 2008)
(per curiam) (“[C]ontrary to plaintiffs' arguments
on appeal, the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e) apply
to all persons proceeding IFP and are not limited to prisoner
suits, and the provisions allow dismissal without
service.”). In reviewing whether a complaint states a
claim on which relief may be granted, this Court must accept
as true all of the factual allegations in the complaint and
draw all reasonable inferences in the plaintiff's favor.
Aten v. Scottsdale Ins. Co., 511 F.3d 818, 820 (8th
Cir. 2008). Although the factual allegations in the complaint
need not be detailed, they must be sufficient to “raise
a right to relief above the speculative level . . . .”
Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555
(2007). The complaint must “state a claim to relief
that is plausible on its face.” Id. at 570. In
assessing the sufficiency of the complaint, the court may
disregard legal conclusions that are couched as factual
allegations. See Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662
(2009). Pro se complaints are to be construed liberally, but
they still must allege sufficient facts to support the claims
advanced. See Stone v. Harry, 364 F.3d 912, 914 (8th
one lawsuit among many filed by Jackson in this District
alleging misconduct by local, state, and federal officials.
See, e.g., Jackson v. Department of Human
Services, No. 19-CV-1429 (NEB/ECW) (D. Minn. 2019);
Jackson v. Hortman, No. 19-CV-1304 (SRN/SER) (D.
Minn. 2019); Jackson v. State of Minnesota, No.
19-CV-0741 (JRT/BRT) (D. Minn. 2019); Jackson v. Radias
Health, No. 19-CV-0724 (PJS/DTS) (D. Minn. 2019) (naming
the State of Minnesota among the defendants); Jackson v.
Dayton, No. 18-CV-1525 (DWF/HB) (D. Minn. 2018);
Jackson v. Marek, No. 18-CV-1432 (JRT/KMM) (D. Minn.
2018); Jackson v. Axtell, No. 18-CV-1073 (ECT/SER)
(D. Minn. 2018). The most substantial of the allegations made
in the Complaint in this matter-that Jackson's rights
were violated with respect to an unlawful search in 2012-is
already the subject of ongoing litigation in this District.
See Jackson v. Ossell, No. 17-CV-5483 (JRT/BRT) (D.
Minn. 2017). Jackson's remaining allegations, even where
they are comprehensible, amount to conclusory statements that
other public officials have violated his rights in other
unspecified ways. Most of the defendants included in this
lawsuit appear to have been named for no reason whatsoever;
no allegations at all are asserted against the president, the
senators of the State of Minnesota, or the state's
governor, for example. Thus, to the extent that the action is
not duplicative, Jackson has failed to state a claim on which
relief may be granted. The action should be dismissed without
prejudice on that basis.
Jackson has filed a motion to amend the defendants named to
this action. As a general matter, Jackson (like any litigant)
does not need permission of the Court to amend his complaint
once as a matter of course prior to serving the complaint, or
within 21 days of service. See Fed. R. Civ. P.
15(a). But Jackson has not filed an amended complaint; he
merely proposes to add additional defendants to his original
complaint. This violates the District's Local Rule
15.1(a), which requires that “any amended pleading must
be complete in itself and must not incorporate by reference
any prior pleading.” Moreover, Jackson does not
adequately allege how any of the proposed defendants violated
the law. Accordingly, it is recommended that Jackson's
motion to amend defendants also be denied.
on the foregoing, and on all of the files, records, and
proceedings herein, IT IS HEREBY RECOMMENDED
action be DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
application to proceed in forma pauperis of
Plaintiff Howard G. Jackson (Doc. No. 2) be
Jackson's motion to amend defendants (Doc. No. 3) be
Objections: This Report and Recommendation is not an
order or judgment of the District Court and is therefore not
appealable directly to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Local Rule 72.2(b)(1), “a party may file and serve
specific written objections to a magistrate judge's
proposed finding and recommendations within 14 days after
being served a copy” of the Report and Recommendation.
A party may respond to those objections within 14 days after
being served a copy of the objections. See Local