United States District Court, D. Oregon, Portland Division
Mark Coultas, Pro Se Plaintiff
Hallman Assistant Attorney General Department of Justice,
Attorney for Defendants
OPINION & ORDER
A. HERNÁNDEZ, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
brings this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §
1983. For the reasons set forth below, the Court dismisses
Plaintiff's Complaint for failing to state a claim upon
which relief may be granted.
alleges he was falsely accused of child molestation in 2001.
During trial on those charges, the police and prosecutor
committed fraud upon the trial court and violated his right
to due process. He asks this Court to vacate his criminal
convictions and award him various fees, expenses,
compensatory damages, and punitive damages totaling $100,
is appropriate if a plaintiff fails to state a claim upon
which relief can be granted. See Fed. R. Civ. P.
12(b)(6). Plaintiff's complaint should not be dismissed
for failure to state a claim, however, unless it appears
beyond doubt that Plaintiff can prove no set of facts in
support of his claim which would entitle him to relief.
Terracom v. Valley Nat'l Bank, 49 F.3d 555, 558
(9th Cir. 1995).
for failure to state a claim is a ruling on a question of
law. Parks School of Business, Inc. v. Symington, 51
F.3d 1480, 1484 (9th Cir. 1995). Review is limited to the
contents of the complaint and its exhibits, id., as
well as matters properly subject to judicial notice.
Swartz v. KPMG LLP, 476 F.3d 756, 763 (9th Cir.
2007). Allegations of fact in the complaint must be
taken as true and construed in the light most favorable to
plaintiff. Parks School of Business, Inc., 51 F.3d
the facts alleged, the court also must draw all reasonable
inferences in plaintiff's favor. Usher v. City of Los
Angeles, 828 F.2d 556, 561 (9th Cir. 1987).
8, 2018, Judge Mosman issued an order dismissing
Plaintiff's complaint in the case of Coultas v.
Tichenor et al., 3:18-cv-596-MO. Coultas v.
Tichenor, 2018 WL 2287023 (D. Or. May 8, 2018). Judge
Mosman concluded that Plaintiff's complaint was barred by
the doctrine of res judicata. Specifically, he found that
Plaintiff had litigated the same claims, against the same
defendants, twice before: in Coultas v. Payne, et
al., No. 3:11-cv-00045-AC and Coultas v. Payne,
et al., No. 3:12-cv-01132-AC. In the first case,
Judge Acosta ultimately dismissed the claims against the same
defendants based on Eleventh Amendment immunity, failure to
state a claim, and the statute of limitations. Coultas v.
Payne et al., No. 3:11-cv-00045-AC, ECF Nos. 44, 100,
137. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed that
decision on April 9, 2018. Coultas v. Payne, 699
Fed.Appx. 749 (9th Cir. 2017) (Mem). In the second case,
Judge Acosta determined, in part, that claim preclusion
barred the relitigation of these issues and dismissed the
case with prejudice. Findings and Recommendation, Coultas
v. Payne, et al., No. 3:12-cv-01132-AC, ECF 55.
has now filed a new complaint before this Court. The
complaint names the same defendants and recites the same
facts and allegations as the case previously before Judge
Mosman. Indeed, the complaint reads almost verbatim. Thus,
Defendants moved to dismiss to the complaint based on Judge
Mosman's order and the doctrine of res judicata. In
response, Plaintiff argues-as he did before Judge Mosman-that
the case has never been heard and decided on the merits. He
also argues that the new complaint identifies new harms that
could not have been raised in prior litigation. Specifically,
he notes that (1) ORS § ...