United States District Court, D. Minnesota
EVENSTAD, PRO SE.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
RICHARD NELSON, UNITES STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the Court are Petitioner Thomas Evenstad's Objections
[Doc. No. 5] to the August 21, 2019 Report and Recommendation
(R&R) [Doc. No. 4] filed by Magistrate Judge Hildy
Bowbeer. The R&R addressed Evenstad's Complaint under
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2) (2012). In the R&R, the
magistrate judge recommends that the complaint [Doc. No. 1]
be dismissed without prejudice, and that Evenstad's
Application to Proceed in District Court without Prepaying
Fees or Costs [Doc. No. 2] and Motion to Compel [Doc. No. 3]
be denied as moot. For the reasons set forth below, the Court
overrules Evenstad's Objections, adopts the R&R in
its entirety, and dismisses the Complaint without prejudice.
Thomas Evenstad is serving a sentence for sending threatening
communications. He is incarcerated at the Minnesota
Correctional Facility in Stillwater, Minnesota.
initiated this civil action alleging that he is entitled to
compensation because in 2003 Minnesota officials did not heed
his advice to implement GPS tracking for persons released
from prison with a high risk of sexually violent behavior.
(See Compl. [Doc. No. 1].) He claims that as a
result of ignoring his advice, an individual with a high risk
of sexually violent behavior was released from prison without
GPS tracking and subsequently murdered Dru Sjodin.
MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
relevant to Evenstad's Objections, in the R&R, the
magistrate judge ruled that Evenstad failed to state claims
on which relief may be granted, and thus, that the Complaint
should be dismissed without prejudice. The magistrate judge
assessed each of the eight claims individually. The
magistrate judge noted that while pro se complaints are
construed liberally, the facts were not pled sufficiently to
put the defendants on notice of the claims being brought
against them. Accordingly, the magistrate judge denied
Evenstad's Application to Proceed in District Court
without Prepaying Fees or Costs and Evenstad's Motion to
objections must be read liberally in light of his pro se
status. See Horsey v. Asher, 741 F.2d 209, 211 n.3
(8th Cir. 1984) (citing Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S.
519, 520 (1972)). Evenstad's primary argument is that he
be appointed counsel to assist him in amending his complaint.
(See Pl. Obj. [Doc. No. 5] at 1.) He contends that
if the court appoints him counsel, he will “amend the
Complaint to show the Court exactly the information the Court
claims Evenstad hasn't shown.” (Id. at 4.)
Additionally, Evenstad restates his claims that the
Defendants ignored his GPS tracking proposal, stole that
idea, touted it as their own, violated his Constitutional
right to Due Process, retaliated against him, and caused
intentional infliction of emotional distress. (Id.)
Evenstad also attached a Motion to Compel the production of
the Complaint by Dru Sjodin's family. (Id. at
district court must undertake an independent, de novo review
of those portions of the R&R to which a party has
properly objected. D. Minn. L.R. 72.2(b). In that 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)
(2012); accord D. Minn. L.R. 72.2. Under Local rule
72.2, objections must be “specific.” D. Minn.
his objections Evenstad argues that the court must appoint
him counsel. Pro se litigants do not have a constitutional or
statutory right to counsel in civil cases. Stevens v.
Redwing, 146 F.3d 538, 546 (8th Cir. 1998). Rather,
appointment of counsel is a matter of the Court's
discretion. McCall v. Benson, 114 F.3d 754, 756 (8th
Cir. 1997); Mosby v. Mabry, 697 F.2d 213, 214 (8th
Cir. 1982). Among the factors the court considers are the
factual complexity of the case, the ability of the litigant
to present his claims, the complexity of the legal issues,
and whether both the litigant and the court would benefit
from having the litigant represented by counsel.
McCall, 114 F.3d at 756; Johnson v.
Williams, 788 F.2d 1319, 1322-23 (8th Cir. 1986). Here,
the Court finds that neither the facts nor the legal issues
involved in this case are so complex as to warrant
appointment of counsel.
objected to the dismissal of his claims, but he does not
introduce new information to substantiate his claims.
(See Pl. Obj. [Doc. No. 5] at 4.) Instead, he
restates what he believes to be “the central
truths” asserted in his complaint. (Id. at 2,
4.) However, the law states that a complaint must
“state a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
554, 570 (2007). Thus, as the magistrate judge correctly
noted, Evenstad failed to state a cause of action on which