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HANSON v. GOODWIN

May 12, 1977

Gerald P. HANSON, Walter M. Froembgen, Plaintiffs,
v.
William N. GOODWIN, Walter T. McGovern, Morell E. Sharp, Donald S. Voorhees, William T. Beeks, George H. Boldt, John C. Bowen, and William J. Lindberg, Defendants. Walter M. FROEMBGEN, Plaintiff, v. Walter T. McGOVERN, Morell E. Sharp, and Donald S. Voorhees, Defendants



The opinion of the court was delivered by: SHARP

 MORELL E. SHARP, District Judge.

 The plaintiffs pro se in the action C77-41MS name as defendants all three District Judges of this district, three Senior District Judges, one retired District Judge, and the late Judge William N. Goodwin, who passed away over a year ago. The plaintiffs seek from each defendant general damages of $100,000, "exemplary damages" of $150,000, and "punitive damages" of $200,000.

 The filing of C77-41MS, was followed four days later by Plaintiff Froembgen's pro se suit C77-56MS against the three active judges of this court. It alleges in totally conclusory terms his dissatisfaction with legal rulings made by the judges of this court, charging numerous violations of the Constitution, which he deems to be acts of the judges in violation of criminal statutes relating to civil rights, specifically 18 U.S.C., § 242. He prays for general damages from each judge of $100,000, "exemplary damages" of $150,000, and "punitive damages" of $250,000.

 The long established immunity of judges from suit for actions taken within their jurisdiction finds no exception in the law. The freedom a judge must have to decide matters brought before him without risk of intimidation has traditionally been held inviolate. Bradley v. Fisher, 13 Wall. 335, 80 U.S. 335, 20 L. Ed. 646 (1872); Pierson v. Ray, 386 U.S. 547, 87 S. Ct. 1213, 18 L. Ed. 2d 288 (1967); Gregory v. Thompson, 500 F.2d 59 (9th Cir. 1974) (dictum). The plaintiffs, in each of these cases, having alleged no acts outside the jurisdiction of the defendant judges, fail to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.

 No conceivable amendment of the complaints could cure the lack of jurisdiction.

 
". . . (It) is well settled that the court must dismiss sua sponte at any time its lack of jurisdiction appears by any means. Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b); McNutt v. General Motors Acceptance Corp., 298 U.S. 178, 56 S. Ct. 780, 80 L. Ed. 1135 (1936); Zank v. Landon, 205 F.2d 615 (9th Cir. 1953); 2A Moore, Federal Practice, Para. 12.09[3] (2d ed. 1976)."

 O'Donnell v. Wien Air Alaska, Inc., 551 F.2d 1141, 1144 fn. 3 (9th Cir., 1977). Cf. Wright v. Rhay, 310 F.2d 687 (9th Cir. 1962), cert. denied 373 U.S. 918, 83 S. Ct. 1309, 10 L. Ed. 2d 418; Gilland v. Hyder, 278 F. Supp. 189 (E.D.Tenn.1967). The author of this opinion has previously been dismissed from each of these cases. Now the complaints must be dismissed with prejudice.

 These plaintiffs are no strangers to this Court. Including the present cases, plaintiff Froembgen has filed no fewer than eleven complaints within a sixteen month period, and plaintiff Hanson has filed the remarkable total of eight in little more than seven months. Plaintiff Froembgen has commenced the following actions:

 Froembgen v. Gunderson (C75-712S). This suit was filed October 6, 1975, against the assistant superintendent of plaintiff's employer school district for the district's refusal to accept the plaintiff's W-4 form which indicated no taxes should be withheld and had the certification struck out, and for the district's actual withholding of taxes based on an earlier W-4 as required by law. The extent of the attorney work product evidenced by the file indicates that the defendant was put to substantial legal expense to demonstrate that the lawsuit was frivolous. Summary Judgment was entered for defendant June 18, 1976; reconsideration was denied July 29, 1976; and further hearing was denied by minute order on March 3, 1977.

 Froembgen v. Sassi, et al. (C76-415S). The District Director's co-defendant in this case manages the Service Center in Ogden, Utah. The District had forwarded the deficiency notice relating to the plaintiff to the Service Center, which in turn had made demand on the plaintiff for his unpaid taxes. The plaintiff was sufficiently offended by these routine administrative functions that he claimed against the Directors of each office general damages of $1,000,000, and punitive damages of $3,000,000. A paper filed subsequently in this case referred to the "lying tactics of the presiding judge," and referred to the U.S. Attorney and the Judge as "two criminals in conspiracy." The cause of action was dismissed on September 17, 1976. Reconsideration was denied on March 11, 1977. Plaintiff filed a further document herein on March 17, 1977, charging a "fraudulent and criminal" dismissal.

 Froembgen v. Patterson (C76-428S). The defendant, a deputy prosecuting attorney of Snohomish County, had two contacts with the plaintiff, according to the complaint. The first resulted in a refusal to do anything about the plaintiff's complaint regarding his W-4 form, and the second was a refusal to provide what is vaguely referred to as "redress under the provisions of the First Amendment." The prayer was for general damages of $250,000, and punitive damages of $500,000. The cause of action was dismissed September 28, ...


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