United States District Court, S.D. Georgia
LISA GODBEY WOOD, JUDGE
before the Court are Plaintiff's Motion for
Reconsideration of the Court's Order dated May 26, 2017,
and Motion for Appointment of Counsel, dkt. no. 47, and his
Objections to the Magistrate Judge's Reports and
Recommendations of February 23, 2018, dkt. no. 70. For the
reasons which follow, the Court DENIES
Plaintiff's Motion for Reconsideration and Motion for
Appointment of Counsel and OVERRULES
Plaintiff's Objections. In addition, the Court
DISMISSES as moot all other pending Motions.
The Court GRANTS the unopposed Motions for
Summary Judgment filed by Defendants Brooks, Hall, and Juran,
dkt. no 57, and Defendant Gunderson, dkt. no. 60,
DISMISSES Plaintiff's Complaint, and
DENIES Plaintiff in forma
pauperis status on appeal. The Court
DIRECTS the Clerk of Court to
CLOSE this case and to enter the appropriate
judgment of dismissal.
Plaintiff's Motion for Reconsideration (Dkt. No.
Brooks, Hall, and Juran filed a Motion to Dismiss on November
8, 2016. Dkt. No. 26. Plaintiff subsequently filed a Motion
to Amend Complaint and a Motion to Amend or Add Parties, dkt.
nos. 32, 33. By Order and Report and Recommendation dated
March 24, 2017, the Magistrate Judge granted Plaintiff s
Motion to Amend Complaint but denied Plaintiff's Motion
to Amend or Add Parties. Dkt. No. 43, pp. 3-4, 6-7. As a
result of this approved amendment, the Magistrate Judge
recommended the Court dismiss as moot the Motion to Dismiss
Defendants Brooks, Hall, and Juran filed. Id. at pp.
4-6. The Court adopted this recommendation as the opinion of
the Court on May 26, 2017. Dkt. No. 45. In response,
Plaintiff filed a "Petition of Concern", which was
docketed as a Motion for Reconsideration of this Court's
May 26, 2017, Order, as well as a Motion for Appointment of
Counsel. Dkt. No. 47.
motion for reconsideration, or a Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 59(e) motion, is "an extraordinary remedy, to
be employed sparingly." Smith ex rel. Smith v.
Augusta-Richmond County, No. CV 110-126, 2012 WL
1355575, at *1 (S.D. Ga. Apr. 18, 2012) (internal citation
omitted). "A movant must set forth facts or law of a
strongly convincing nature to induce the court to reverse its
prior decision." Id. (internal citation
omitted). "The only grounds for granting a Rule 59
motion are newly-discovered evidence or manifest errors of
law or fact." Jacobs v. Tempur-Pedic Intern.,
Inc., 626 F.3d 1327, 1344 (11th Cir. 2010) (quoting
In re Kellogg, 197 F.3d 1116, 1119 (11th Cir. 1999)
(internal punctuation omitted)). "A Rule 59(e) motion
cannot be used to relitigate old matters, raise argument or
present evidence that could have been raised prior to the
entry of judgment." Id. (quoting Michael
Linet, Inc. v. Village of Wellington, 408 F.3d 757, 763
(11th Cir. 2005) (alterations omitted)).
Court discerns no reason to grant Plaintiff's Motion. He
fails to present any newly-discovered evidence in support of
his claims, nor does he allege this Court's
previously-entered Order represents a manifest error of law
or fact. In fact, Plaintiff offers no reason for the Court to
reconsider its previously-entered Order dismissing as moot
Defendants Brooks, Hall, and Juran's Motion to Dismiss.
Accordingly, the Court DENIES
Plaintiff's Motion for Reconsideration. The Court's
Order dated May 26, 2017, remains the Order of the Court.
Plaintiff's Motion for Appointment of Counsel (Dkt. No.
civil case, Plaintiff has no constitutional right to the
appointment of counsel. Wright v. Langford, 562
Fed.Appx. 769, 777 (11th Cir. 2014) (citing Bass v.
Perrin, 170 F.3d 1312, 1320 (11th Cir. 1999)).
"Although a court may, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(1), appoint counsel for an indigent plaintiff, it has
broad discretion in making this decision, and should appoint
counsel only in exceptional circumstances." Id.
(citing Bass, 170 F.3d at 1320). Appointment of
counsel in a civil case is a "privilege that is
justified only by exceptional circumstances, such as where
the facts and legal issues are so novel or complex as to
require the assistance of a trained practitioner."
Fowler v. Jones, 899 F.2d 1088, 1096 (11th Cir.
1990) (citing Poole v. Lambert, 819 F.2d 1025, 1028
(11th Cir. 1987), and Wahl v. Mclver, 773 F.2d 1169,
1174 (11th Cir. 1985)) . The Eleventh Circuit Court of
Appeals has explained that "the key" to assessing
whether counsel should be appointed "is whether the
pro se litigant needs help in presenting the
essential merits of his or her position to the court. Where
the facts and issues are simple, he or she usually will not
need such help." McDaniels v. Lee, 405
Fed.Appx. 456, 457 (11th Cir. 2010) (quoting Kilgo v.
Ricks, 983 F.2d 189, 193 (11th Cir. 1993)).
Court has reviewed the record and pleadings in this case and
finds no "exceptional circumstances" warranting the
appointment of counsel. While the Court understands that
Plaintiff is incarcerated, this Court has repeatedly found
that "prisoners do not receive special consideration
notwithstanding the challenges of litigating a case while
incarcerated." Hampton v. Peeples, No. CV
614-104, 2015 WL 4112435, at *2 (S.D. Ga. July 7, 2015).
"Indeed, the Eleventh Circuit has consistently upheld
district courts' decisions to refuse appointment of
counsel in 42 U.S.C. § 1983 actions similar to this case
for want of exceptional circumstances." Id.
(citing Smith v. Warden, Hardee Corr. Inst., 597
Fed.Appx. 1027, 1030 (11th Cir. 2015); Wright, 562
Fed.Appx. at 777; Faulkner v. Monroe Cty. Sheriff's
Dep't, 523 Fed.Appx. 696, 702 (11th Cir. 2013);
McDaniels, 405 Fed.Appx. at 457; Sims v.
Nguyen, 403 Fed.Appx. 410, 414 (11th Cir. 2010);
Fowler, 899 F.2d at 1091, 1096; and Wahl,
773 F.2d at 1174). This case is not so complex legally or
factually to prevent Plaintiff from presenting "the
essential merits of his position" to the Court.
these reasons, the Court DENIES
Plaintiff's Objections to the February 23, 2018, Reports
and Recommendations (Dkt. No. 70)
Objections, Plaintiff makes the same assertions and requests
the same relief as he has in previously-filed pleadings. Dkt.
No. 70. However, nothing in Plaintiff's Objections serves
to create a genuine issue of fact material to his deliberate
indifference claims against the remaining Defendants.
after an independent and de novo review of the
entire record, the undersigned concurs with the Magistrate
Judge's Reports and Recommendations, dkt. nos. 68, 69.
The Court OVERRULES Plaintiff's
Objections and ADOPTS the Magistrate
Judge's Reports and Recommendations as the opinion of the
Court. The Court GRANTS the unopposed
Motions for Summary Judgment filed by Defendants Brooks,
Hall, and Juran, dkt. no. 57, and Defendant Gunderson, dkt.
no. 60, DISMISSES Plaintiff's Complaint,
and DENIES Plaintiff in ...