United States District Court, E.D. North Carolina, Western Division
ORDER & MEMORANDUM & RECOMMENDATION
T. Numbers, II United States Magistrate Judge
Stacy Brown brings a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983
alleging that various staff members of the Wake County
Detention Center violated his rights by negligently providing
food that aggravates his diabetes. D.E. 1. The Complaint
(D.E. 1) also alleges that before his imprisonment Brown was
managing his diabetes with daily use of oral medication but
that he now requires treatment with daily injections of
insulin as a result of the diet. He also maintains that
various detention center officials did not properly address
his complaints about the food. He seeks an order requiring a
“Menu change conducive to Diabetic health” and
“undisclosed Monetary Compensation.” Upon a
motion (D.E. 3) by Brown, the court has issued an order (D.E.
9) allowing him to proceed without prepayment of fees.
matter is before the court for a preliminary review under 28
U.S.C. § 1915A(a), which requires courts to review
actions that prisoners have filed against governmental
entities or officials. Also before the court are six motions
made by Brown:
1) A motion (D.E. 3) for the entry of a temporary restraining
2) A second, similar motion (D.E. 8) for the entry of a
temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction
3) A motion for a protective order (D.E. 10) citing Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure 26(c); 4) A motion (D.E. 13)
requesting the court:
a) vacate a previous order (D.E. 9) which granted Brown the
ability to proceed without prepayment of fees and;
b) refund court fees debited from his prisoner trust fund
5) A motion for appointment of counsel (D.E. 14); and
6) A motion for entry of default (D.E. 15).
following reasons, the undersigned recommends that the
district court deny each of Brown's motions without
prejudice and dismiss this action without prejudice.
Motion for Appointment of Counsel
has filed a motion asking the court to appoint counsel for
him. D.E. 14. There is no constitutional right to counsel in
civil cases, and courts should exercise their discretion to
appoint counsel for pro se civil litigants “only in
exceptional cases.” Cook v. Bounds, 518 F.2d
779, 780 (4th Cir. 1975). The existence of exceptional
circumstances justifying appointment of counsel depends upon
“the type and complexity of the case, and the abilities
of the individuals bringing it.” Whisenant v.
Yuam, 739 F.2d 160, 163 (4th Cir. 1984), abrogated
on other grounds by Mallard v. U.S. Dist. Court for the S.
Dist. of Iowa, 490 U.S. 296 (1989) (quoting Branch
v. Cole, 686 F.2d 264 (5th Cir. 1982)); see also
Gordon v. Leeke, 574 F.2d 1147, 1153 (4th Cir. 1978)
(“If it is apparent . . . that a pro se litigant has a
colorable claim but lacks capacity to present it, the
district court should appoint counsel to assist him.”).
Brown's action is not complex, and he has demonstrated
through the detail of his filings that he is capable of
proceeding pro se. As such, this case is not one in which
exceptional circumstances merit appointment of counsel.
Therefore, Brown's motion requesting that he be appointed
counsel is denied.
Screening Pursuant to the Prison ...