United States District Court, D. New Jersey, Camden Vicinage
ORDER [DKT. NO. 1]
RENÉE MARIE BUMB, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
matter comes before the Court upon Plaintiff Aaron Anthony
Gray's filing of a pro se Complaint [Dkt. No. 1]
against Michael J. Hagner, Robert W. Bell, Lori Batten,
Kaitlyn Compari, Cory Ferguson, Camden County Corrections,
the Voorhees Township Police Department, the Municipality of
Voorhees, the State of New Jersey, the Camden County
Prosecutor's Office, and McDonald's (collectively,
“Defendants”). In the pro se Complaint,
Plaintiff attempts to assert causes of action under 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983, alleging that Defendants deprived him of his
constitutional rights through false arrest and imprisonment
and malicious prosecution. Along with his Complaint,
Plaintiff filed an application for permission to proceed
in forma pauperis (“IFP”)[Dkt. No. 1-1].
reasons set forth herein, Plaintiff's IFP Application
will be GRANTED, and the Court will order
the Clerk of the Court to open this matter and file the
pro se Complaint on the docket. However, because
Plaintiff is proceeding IFP, the Court is required to screen
his Complaint for sua sponte dismissal and finds
that it should be DISMISSED WITHOUT
non-prisoner files an IFP Application, seeking permission to
file a civil complaint without the prepayment of fees, under
28 U.S.C. § 1915, the applicant is required to submit an
affidavit that sets forth his or her assets and attests to
the applicant's inability to pay the requisite fees.
See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a); Roy v. Penn.
Nat'l Ins. Co., 2014 WL 4104979, at *1 n.1 (D.N.J.
Aug. 19, 2014) (internal citations omitted). The decision
whether to grant or to deny the application should be based
upon the economic eligibility of the applicant, as
demonstrated by the affidavit. See Sinwell v. Shapp,
536 F.2d 15, 19 (3d Cir. 1976). Upon review, the Court finds
that Plaintiff has established that he lacks the financial
ability to pay the filing fee. Accordingly, the Court will
grant Plaintiff's IFP Application.
LEGAL STANDARD FOR SUA SPONTE DISMISSAL
IFP Application has been granted, the Court is required to
screen the Complaint and dismiss the 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). Indeed, the Court must dismiss
any claim, prior to service, that fails to state a claim
under which relief may be granted under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6)
and/or dismiss any defendant who is immune from suit. See 28
U.S.C. §§ 1915(e)(2)(B), 1915A(b), and 42 U.S.C.
Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a) requires that a complaint
(1) [A] short and plain statement of the grounds for the
court's jurisdiction, unless the court already has
jurisdiction and the claim needs no new jurisdictional
(2) [A] short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief; and
(3) [A] demand for the relief sought, which may include
relief in the alternative or different types of relief.
survive sua sponte screening for failure to state a
claim, a complaint must allege “sufficient factual
matter” to show that the claim is facially plausible.
Fowler v. UPMS Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210 (3d Cir.
2009) (citation omitted). “A claim has facial
plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that
allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the
defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Fair Wind Sailing, Inc. v. Dempster, 764 F.3d 303,
308 n.3 (3d Cir. 2014). “[A] pleading that offers
‘labels or conclusions' or ‘a formulaic
recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not
do.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
(2009) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544, 555 (2007)). In screening a complaint to verify
whether it meets these standards, however, this Court is
mindful of the requirement that pro se pleadings must be
construed liberally in favor of the plaintiff. Haines v.
Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520- 21(1972).
complaint is frivolous if it “lacks an arguable basis
either in law or in fact.” Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989) (interpreting the
predecessor of § 1915(e)(2), the former § 1915(d)).
The standard for evaluating whether a complaint is
“frivolous” is an objective one. Deutsch v.
United States, 67 F.3d 1080, 1086-87 (3d Cir.1995). A
determination of “maliciousness” requires a
subjective inquiry into the litigant's motivations at the
time of the filing of the lawsuit to determine whether the
action is an attempt to vex, injure, or harass the defendant.
Id. at 1086. Examples of malicious claims can
include those that “duplicate ... allegations of
another ...federal lawsuit by the same plaintiff.”
Pittman v. Moore, 980 F.2d 994, 995 (5th Cir. 1993).