United States District Court, D. Oregon, Medford Division
OPINION & ORDER
MICHAEL MCSHANE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Matthew Robert Pusateri and Dalton Robert Pusateri seek leave
to proceed in forma pauperis (IFP) in this civil
rights action against Klamath County Community Development
(KCCD) and Earl Perry, a Klamath County code enforcement
officer. For the reasons set forth below, the Pusateris'
Complaint, ECF No. 1, is DISMISSED with leave to amend. The
Court defers ruling on the Pusateris' Application for
Leave to Proceed IFP, ECF No. 2, pending submission of an
Pusateris' Complaint is disjointed and difficult to read.
It largely consists of a disconnected recitation of incidents
and grievances, apparently involving an unnamed home
owner's association (HOA), as well as conflicts between
the Pusateris and various private individuals and Klamath
County employees. To the best of the Court's
understanding, the Pusateris (1) believe that they are being
unfairly targeted by KCCE, which the Court infers to be
Klamath County Code Enforcement, and by KCCE officer Earl
Perry in particular; and (2) that there are some sort of
irregularities in the development of a residential area.
the events described involve Matthew Pusateri. Dalton
Pusateri's involvement in the incidents described in the
Complaint, if any, remains unclear.
all parties instituting any civil action in United States
District Court must pay a statutory filing fee. 28 U.S.C.
§ 1914(a). However, the federal IFP statute, 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(a)(1), provides indigent litigants an opportunity
for meaningful access to federal courts despite their
inability to pay the costs and fees associated with that
access. To authorize a litigant to proceed IFP, a court must
make two determinations. First, a court must determine
whether the litigant is unable to pay the costs of commencing
the action. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1). Second, it must
assess whether the action is frivolous, malicious, fails to
state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks
monetary relief from a defendant who is immune to such
relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
regard to the second of these determinations, district courts
have the power under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B) to screen
complaints even before service of the complaint on the
defendants, and must dismiss a complaint if it fails to state
a claim. Courts apply the same standard under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(2)(B) as when addressing a motion to dismiss
under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). Watison
v. Carter, 668 F.3d 1108, 1112 (9th Cir. 2012). To
survive a motion to dismiss under the federal pleading
standards, the complaint must include a short and plain
statement of the claim and “contain sufficient factual
matter, accepted as true, to ‘state a claim for relief
that is plausible on its face.'” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). “A
claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads
factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable
inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct
alleged. The plausibility standard . . . asks for more than a
sheer possibility that a defendant has acted
unlawfully.” Id. The court is not required to
accept legal conclusions, unsupported by alleged facts, as
se pleadings are held to less stringent standards than
pleadings by attorneys. Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S.
519, 520-21 (1972). That is, the court should construe
pleadings by pro se plaintiffs liberally and afford
the plaintiffs the benefit of any doubt. Karim-Panahi v.
Los Angeles Police Dep't, 839 F.2d 621, 623 (9th
Cir. 1988). Additionally, a pro se litigant is
entitled to notice of the deficiencies in the complaint and
the opportunity to amend, unless the complaint's
deficiencies cannot be cured by amendment. Id.
Complaint in this case is disjointed and difficult to read.
Construed liberally, it appears the Pusateris intend to
assert 42 U.S.C. § 1983 civil rights claims against KCCD
and KCCE officer Earl Perry for violating their right to
equal protection and for malicious prosecution of Matthew
42 U.S.C. § 1983 “provides a federal cause of
action against any person who, acting under color of state
law, deprives another of his federal rights.” Conn
v. Gabbert, 526 U.S. 286, 290 (1999). To maintain a
claim under § 1983, “a plaintiff must both (1)
allege the deprivation of a right secured by the federal
Constitution or statutory law, and (2) allege that the
deprivation was committed by a person acting under color of
state law.” Anderson v. Warner, 451 F.3d 1063,
1067 (9th Cir. 2006).
Statute of Limitations
claim under § 1983 is subject to a statute of
limitations. Because § 1983 does not have an express
statute of limitations, federal courts borrow the state
statute of limitations for personal injury actions. Owens
v. Okure, 488 U.S. 235, 240-41 (1989). Oregon's
two-year statute of limitations for personal injury actions,
ORS 12.110(1), applies to ...