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Taylor v. State

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

February 14, 2019

EMMETT F. TAYLOR, Plaintiff,
v.
THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY, THE OFFICE OF THE CAMDEN COUNTY PROSECUTOR, and THE OFFICE OF THE CAMDEN COUNTY PUBLIC DEFENDER, Defendants.

          EMMETT F. TAYLOR Appearing pro se

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          NOEL L. HILLMAN, U.S.D.J.

         WHEREAS, on July 2, 2018, Plaintiff, Emmett F. Taylor, appearing pro se, filed a complaint, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, against Defendants, the State of New Jersey, the Office of the Camden County Prosecutor, and the Office of the Camden County Public Defender, for their alleged constitutional violations; and

         WHEREAS, Plaintiff also filed an application to proceed without prepayment of fees (“in forma pauperis” or “IFP” application) pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1); and

         WHEREAS, the screening provisions of the IFP statute require a federal court to dismiss an action sua sponte if, among other things, the action is frivolous or malicious, or if it fails to comply with the proper pleading standards, see 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(i)-(iii); Ball v. Famiglio, 726 F.3d 448, 452 (3d Cir. 2013); and

         WHEREAS, on September 11, 2018, the Court screened Plaintiff's complaint and granted his IFP application, but found that Plaintiff's complaint was deficient in several ways (Docket No. 3); and

         WHEREAS, the Court provided Plaintiff with twenty days to file an amended complaint; and

         WHEREAS, Plaintiff failed to file an amended complaint, but instead filed a letter (Docket No. 4), which the Court construed to be a motion for reconsideration; and

         WHEREAS, in consideration of Plaintiff's motion for reconsideration, the Court issued an Opinion and Order on February 6, 2019, which reiterated the reasons why Plaintiff's complaint was deficient, and provided Plaintiff with an additional thirty days to file an amended complaint (Docket No. 9, 10); and

         WHEREAS, pursuant to the Court's February 6, 2019 Opinion and Order, Plaintiff filed an amended complaint (Docket No. 11); and

         WHEREAS, the Court has screened Plaintiff's amended complaint;[1]

         Consequently, IT IS on this 14th day of February, 2019 ORDERED that:

         (1) Plaintiff's claims against the State of New Jersey, the Camden County Prosecutor's Office, and the Camden County Public Defender's Officer must be dismissed because they are not “persons” who can act under color of state law, as the Court has explained twice. (See Docket No. 2 at 5-6; Docket No. 9 at 5-6.)

         (2) Plaintiff's claims against the individual Defendants Erin Fay, Felecia Felder, Ubong Ackmen, Luis Montoya, William Harrison, and Diane Price may proceed;[2] and IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerk shall issue a summons for Defendants Erin Fay, Felecia Felder, Ubong Ackmen, Luis Montoya, William Harrison, and Diane Price, and the U.S. Marshal shall serve a copy of the amended complaint, summons, and this ...


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