United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
OPINION, MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
EDWARD AUTREY, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
matter is before the Court on the motion of plaintiff
Nathaniel Simmons, a prisoner, for leave to commence this
civil action without prepayment of the required filing fee.
Having reviewed the motion and the financial information
submitted in support, the Court has determined to grant the
motion, and assess an initial partial filing fee of $1.42.
See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1). In addition, for
the reasons discussed below, the Court will dismiss this case
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1)
to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(1), a prisoner bringing a civil
action in forma pauperis is required to pay the full
amount of the filing fee. If the prisoner has insufficient
funds in his prison account to pay the entire fee, the Court
must assess and, when funds exist, collect an initial partial
filing fee of 20 percent of the greater of (1) the average
monthly deposits in the prisoner's account, or (2) the
average monthly balance in the prisoner's account for the
prior six-month period. After payment of the initial partial
filing fee, the prisoner is required to make monthly payments
of 20 percent of the preceding month's income credited to
the prisoner's account. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(b)(2). The
agency having custody of the prisoner will forward these
monthly payments to the Clerk of Court each time the amount
in the prisoner's account exceeds $10.00, until the
filing fee is fully paid. Id.
support of the instant motion, plaintiff submitted an inmate
account statement showing an average monthly balance of
$6.27, and an average monthly deposit of $7.10. The Court
will therefore assess an initial partial filing fee of $1.42,
which is twenty percent of plaintiff's average monthly
Standard on Initial Review
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2), the Court is required to dismiss
a complaint filed in forma pauperis if it is
frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted. To state a claim for relief under
§ 1983, a complaint must plead more than “legal
conclusions” and “[t]hreadbare recitals of the
elements of a cause of action [that are] supported by mere
conclusory statements.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556
U.S. 662, 678 (2009). A plaintiff must demonstrate a
plausible claim for relief, which is more than a “mere
possibility of misconduct.” Id. at 679.
“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.” Id. at 678. Determining
whether a complaint states a plausible claim for relief is a
context-specific task that requires the reviewing court to,
inter alia, draw upon judicial experience and common
sense. Id. at 679.
se complaints are to be liberally construed. Estelle
v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976). However, they still
must allege sufficient facts to support the claims alleged.
Stone v. Harry, 364 F.3d 912, 914-15 (8th Cir.
2004); see also Martin v. Aubuchon, 623 F.2d 1282,
1286 (8th Cir. 1980) (even pro se complaints are
required to allege facts which, if true, state a claim for
relief as a matter of law). Federal courts are not required
to “assume facts that are not alleged, just because an
additional factual allegation would have formed a stronger
complaint.” Stone, 364 F.3d at 914-15. In
addition, giving a pro se complaint the benefit of a
liberal construction does not mean that procedural rules in
ordinary civil litigation must be interpreted so as to excuse
mistakes by those who proceed without counsel. See McNeil
v. U.S., 508 U.S. 106, 113 (1993).
filed the instant complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983
against the Lincoln County Circuit Clerk, and the State of
Missouri. He claims he was “wrongfully
incarcerated/falsely imprisoned from November 2007 until
February 2009 due to the ‘misplacement' of my court
transcripts by the Lincoln County Clerk's Office after
being poorly advised by my public defender to plead guilty to
a felony that was not in fact a felony in Judge
Brackman's court in April 2008.” (Docket No. 1 at
3). Plaintiff claims that he sought post-conviction relief,
but “all of the efforts to vacate my sentence were on
hold awaiting the court transcripts from the Lincoln County
Clerk's Office where they were ‘lost' until
after my release on parole in 2009.” Id. at 4.
Plaintiff writes: “the case was eventually vacated,
though it was refiled by Lincoln County only to be dismissed
again. Meanwhile I spent a total of 15½ months
incarcerated, and another 6 months in courts and on
supervision.” Id. Plaintiff claims this
destroyed his marriage, cost him all of his property, and led
to the state taking custody of his child.
seeks $1.5 million in damages, and he asks this Court to
remove the interlock stipulation from his driver's
license reinstatement requirements.
1983 claims are analogous to personal injury claims, and are
subject to Missouri's five-year statute of limitations.
Sulik v. Taney County, Mo., 393 F.3d 765, 766-67
(8th Cir. 2005). “Although the statute of limitations
is an affirmative defense, a district court may properly
dismiss an in forma pauperis complaint under 28
U.S.C. § 1915 when it is apparent the statute of
limitations has run.” Myers v. Vogal, 960 F.2d
750, 751 (8th Cir. 1992) (per curiam).
claims that the Lincoln County Clerk's Office misplaced
his court transcripts during the period 2007 through 2009.
Therefore, the latest possible wrongdoing on the part of the
Lincoln County Clerk's Office would have occurred in the
year 2009. However, plaintiff did not file the complaint
until May 7, 2018, approximately nine years later and well
after the expiration of the statute of limitations. The Court
will therefore dismiss plaintiff's ...