United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle
Honorable Richard A. Jones United States District Judge.
matter comes before the Court sua sponte. For the
reasons that follow, the Court DISMISSES
Plaintiffs' complaint. Dkt. # 5.
27, 2018, Plaintiff filed this action against Defendant,
Bellevue Crossroad Mall. Dkt. # 1. Plaintiff appears to be
faulting mall security for telling him to leave
Defendant's mall. Dkt. # 5-1. Plaintiff also submitted an
application to proceed in forma pauperis. Dkt. # 1.
The Honorable Mary Alice Theiler granted the application.
Dkt. # 4.
Court's authority to grant in forma pauperis
status derives from 28 U.S.C. § 1915. The Court is
required to dismiss an in forma pauperis
plaintiff's case if the Court determines that “the
action . . . (i) is frivolous or malicious; (ii) fails to
state a claim on which relief may be granted; or (iii) seeks
monetary relief against a defendant who is immune from such
relief.” 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B); see also
See Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1129 (9th Cir. 2000)
(“[S]ection 1915(e) applies to all in forma pauperis
complaints, not just those filed by prisoners.”). A
complaint is frivolous if it lacks a basis in law or fact.
Andrews v. King, 398 F.3d 1113, 1121 (9th Cir.
2005). A complaint fails to state a claim if it does not
“state a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
544, 568 (2007).
legal standard for dismissing a complaint for failure to
state a claim under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii)
parallels that used when ruling on dismissal under Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6).” Day v.
Florida, No. 14-378-RSM, 2014 WL 1412302, at *4 (W.D.
Wash. Apr. 10, 2014) (citing Lopez, 203 F.3d at
1129). Rule 12(b)(6) permits a court to dismiss a complaint
for failure to state a claim. The rule requires the court to
assume the truth of the complaint's factual allegations
and credit all reasonable inferences arising from those
allegations. Sanders v. Brown, 504 F.3d 903, 910
(9th Cir. 2007). The plaintiff must point to factual
allegations that “state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 568 (2007). Where a plaintiff
proceeds pro se, the Court must construe the
plaintiff's complaint liberally. Johnson v. Lucent
Techs. Inc., 653 F.3d 1000, 1011 (9th Cir. 2011) (citing
Hebbe v. Pliler, 627 F.3d 338, 342 (9th Cir. 2010)).
proceeding further with this matter, the court is obligated
to determine whether it has subject matter jurisdiction.
Moore v. Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, 657
F.3d 890, 894 (9th Cir. 2011); Fed. R. Civ. Proc. 12(h)(3)
(“If the court determines at any time that it lacks
subject-matter jurisdiction, the court must dismiss the
action.”). Absent jurisdiction, any determination on
the merits would be void. Watts v. Pickney, 757 F.2d
406, 409 (9th Cir. 1985). The Court has diversity
jurisdiction over cases where the amount in controversy
exceeds $75, 000 and the case is between
citizens of different states. 28 U.S.C. § 1332. The
Court also has jurisdiction over matters alleging violation
of federal law. 28 U.S.C. § 1331. Neither is apparent
from the face of plaintiff's complaint. Plaintiff does
not provide, cite, or refer to any federal law as a basis for
his claim. Moreover, both Plaintiff and Defendant appear to
be citizens of Washington, and Plaintiff alleges the amount
in controversy is less than $75, 000. Dkt. # 5 at 4-5.
assuming that the Court did have jurisdiction over this
matter, and taking all allegations in the light most
favorable to the Plaintiff, the Complaint fails to state a
claim showing that Plaintiff is entitled to relief.
Plaintiff's Complaint provides very few details regarding
Defendants' alleged actions. Plaintiff's Complaint
essentially consists of two one-page letters that are
conclusory and difficult to comprehend. Dkt. ## 5, 5-1. As
best as this Court can tell, Plaintiff appears to be faulting
Defendant's security personnel for asking him to leave
the mall while he was shopping. Dkt. # 5-1. It is unclear
what relief, if any, Plaintiff requests from this Court, or
what laws it accuses Defendant of violating. Although pro
se litigants are given more leeway than licensed
attorneys when assessing their pleadings, they must still
adhere to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Pearle
Vision, Inc. v. Romm, 541 F.3d 751, 758 (7th Cir. 2008).
Plaintiff simply does not state a plausible claim for which
any type of relief could be granted by this Court.
result, the Court DISMISSES Plaintiff's
Complaint. Within fourteen (14) days from the date of
this Order, Plaintiff may file an amended complaint
addressing the deficiencies addressed above. If Plaintiff
does not file an amended complaint within that timeframe, or
if Plaintiff files an amended complaint that does not provide
a basis for jurisdiction and state a ...