United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Fayetteville Division
OPINION AND ORDER
TIMOTHY L. BROOKS UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
a civil rights case filed by the Plaintiff James Young under
the provisions of 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff proceeds
pro se and in forma pauperis. He is
incarcerated in the Boone County Detention Center (BCDC).
Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) modified the IFP statute,
28 U.S.C. § 1915, to require the Court to screen
complaints for dismissal under § 1915(e)(2)(B). The
Court must dismiss a complaint, or any portion of it, if it
contains claims that: (a) are frivolous or malicious; (b)
fail to state a claim upon which relief may be granted; or
(c) seek monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from
such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
to the allegations of the Complaint (Doc. 2), Plaintiff
traveled to Arkansas on February 1, 2016, to help his family
cut trees. Detectives Jones and Eddings came to the house and
asked questions about Plaintiff not registering as a sex
offender. Plaintiff told the detectives he was not required
to register at all.
was put under arrest for failure to register and on a warrant
out of Oklahoma. Plaintiff does not believe he was served
with the warrant. Plaintiff was transported to the BCDC and
booked in. Plaintiff believes his constitutional rights have
been violated by this conduct. Plaintiff seeks monetary
only place in the Complaint (Doc. 2) that Plaintiff mentions
Prosecuting Attorney David Ethredge is by listing him as a
Defendant. There is no mention of Mr. Ethredge in the
statement of the claim.
the PLRA, the Court is obligated to screen a case prior to
service of process being issued. A claim is frivolous when it
"lacks an arguable basis either in law or fact."
Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). A
claim fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted
if it does not allege "enough facts to state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face." BellAtl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). However, the
Court bears in mind that when "evaluating whether a
pro se plaintiff has asserted sufficient facts to
state a claim, we hold 'a pro se complaint,
however inartfully pleaded, ... to less stringent standards
than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.'"
Jackson v. Nixon, 747 F.3d 537, 541 (8th Cir. 2014)
(quoting Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94
claims against David Ethredge are subject to dismissal.
First, Plaintiff fails to mention Defendant Ethredge in the
statement of claims and makes no allegations against him
anywhere in the Complaint. Second, the prosecuting attorney
is immune from suit. The United States Supreme Court, in
Imbler v. Pachtman, 424 U.S. 409, 427 (1976),
established the absolute immunity of a prosecutor from a
civil suit for damages under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 "in
initiating a prosecution and in presenting the State's
case. This immunity extends to all acts that are
"intimately associated with the judicial phase of the
criminal process." Id. at 430; see also
Buckley v. Fitzsimmons, 509 U.S. 259 (1993) (prosecutor
acting as an advocate for the state in a criminal prosecution
is entitled to absolute immunity while a prosecutor acting in
an investigatory or administrative capacity is only entitled
to qualified immunity); Brodnicki v. City of Omaha,
75 F.3d 1261 (8th Cir. 1996) (county prosecutors were
entitled to absolute immunity from suit).
cognizable claim is stated against Defendant Ethredge.
Complaint as against Prosecuting Attorney David Ethredge
fails to state a cognizable claim under § 1983 and is
frivolous. Therefore, the claims against David Ethredge are
DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE. See 28
U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(i)-(ii) (IFP action may be
dismissed at any time due to frivolousness or for failure to
state a claim). Claims against the remaining Defendants/will
remain for further disposition.