United States District Court, D. Kansas
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
D. Crabtree United States District Judge
February 24, 2017, pro so plaintiff Jamie Stanton filed a
Complaint against an “[u]nknown agent or agency that
placed a GPS tracking device on [his] car [more than two]
years ago in Colorado” and six unidentified John Does,
who are law enforcement officers employed by various state
and local agencies. Doc. 1 at 9. Plaintiff also has filed two
supplements to his Complaint. Docs. 5, 6. Plaintiff's
allegations are not easy to comprehend, but, generally, he
complains that unidentified government agencies and agents
are surveilling him, and he contends that their actions have
violated his constitutional rights. See generally
Docs. 1, 5, 6.
March 6, 2017, Magistrate Judge Kenneth G. Gale issued a
Report and Recommendation recommending dismissal of
plaintiff's Complaint under 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) because it fails to state a claim for
relief. Doc. 8. Judge Gale noted in his Report and
Recommendation that plaintiff may serve and file specific
written objections to the Report and Recommendation under 28
U.S.C. § 636(b)(1), Fed.R.Civ.P. 72, and D. Kan. Rule
72.1.4, within 14 days after service. Id. at 9. The
docket reflects that plaintiff received service of the Report
and Recommendation on March 10, 2017. Doc. 12.
March 10, 2017, plaintiff filed an Objection to Judge
Gale's Report and Recommendation. Doc. 9. Since then,
plaintiff also has filed several motions and supplements
asking the court to terminate the sending of electronic
signals into his apartment. Docs. 13, 14, 16. And, plaintiff
filed another supplement to his Complaint on March 28, 2017.
Doc. 15. Plaintiff's Objection and additional submissions
also are difficult to understand. But, all of his filings
appear to reiterate his allegations that unknown agencies and
agents are surveilling him without probable cause in
violation of the United States Constitution.
Civ. P. 72(b)(2) provides that, after a magistrate judge
enters a recommended disposition on a dispositive matter, a
party may serve and file specific, written objections to the
magistrate judge's order within 14 days after being
served with a copy of the recommended disposition. Then,
under Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(3), the district court “must
determine de novo any part of the magistrate judge's
disposition that has been properly objected to.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(3); see also 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1) (“A judge of the court shall make a de novo
determination of those portions of the report or specified
proposed findings or recommendations to which objection is
made.”). After making this determination, the district
court “may accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in
part, the findings or recommendations made by the magistrate
judge . . . [or] may also receive further evidence or
recommit the matter to the magistrate judge with
instructions.” 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1).
Tenth Circuit requires that objections to a magistrate
judge's recommended disposition “be both timely and
specific to preserve an issue for de novo review by the
district court.” United States v. One Parcel of
Real Property, 73 F.3d 1057, 1060 (10th Cir. 1996). As
stated above, an objection is timely if made within 14 days
after service of a copy of the recommended disposition.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(2). An objection is sufficiently specific
if it “focus[es] the district court's attention on
the factual and legal issues that are truly in
dispute.” One Parcel of Real Property, 73 F.3d
at 1060. If a party fails to make a proper objection, the
court has considerable discretion to review the
recommendation under any standard that it finds appropriate.
Summers v. Utah, 927 F.2d 1165, 1167 (10th Cir.
plaintiff brings this lawsuit pro se, the court construes his
pleadings liberally and holds them to a less stringent
standard than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers. See
Hall v. Bellmon, 935 F.2d 1106, 1110 (10th Cir. 1991).
But the court does not assume the role of his advocate.
Id. Also, plaintiff's pro se status does not
excuse him from “the burden of alleging sufficient
facts on which a recognized legal claim could be
based.” Id. Nor is plaintiff relieved from
complying with the rules of the court or facing the
consequences of noncompliance. Ogden v. San Juan
Cty., 32 F.3d 452, 455 (10th Cir. 1994).
court assumes that plaintiff's Objection is sufficiently
specific to constitute a proper objection under the federal
and local rules, and so it conducts a de novo review of Judge
Gale's Report and Recommendation. After conducting that
review, the court agrees with Judge Gale's conclusion
that plaintiff's Complaint fails to state a claim. Under
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2), the court must consider the
merits of all cases in which a plaintiff proceeds in
forma pauperis, and must dismiss any action that it
determines fails to state a claim on which relief may be
granted. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii). Here, even
giving plaintiff's Complaint and the supplements to that
Complaint the most liberal construction imaginable, plaintiff
has failed to state a plausible claim for relief. As Judge
Gale explained, plaintiff alleges that “an unknown
entity, possibly some unidentified federal government
agency” is monitoring him. Doc. 8 at 8. But plaintiff
also alleges that average citizens are surveilling him as
well-including “gas station attendants, passers-by with
cellular phones, and, apparently, co-residents of his
apartment complex.” Id.
does not know the identities of the individuals who are
allegedly surveilling him. Id. And, although he has
designated several John Doe defendants, the court agrees with
Judge Gale that plaintiff's “factual allegations do
not state a claim to which a defendant could be reasonably
expected to respond, or which could form a basis for
relief.” Id. In sum-as Judge Gale
concluded-plaintiff's claims are not plausible.
Id.; see also Randall v. South Dakota, No.
12-136-ADM/TNL, 2012 WL 1055745, at *1 (D. Minn. Mar. 28,
2012) (dismissing the plaintiff's complaint under 28
U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B) because the plaintiff's
allegations that defendants were conducting surveillance of
her life with equipment provided by either South Dakota or
the United States were insufficient to raise a plausible
claim for relief). Cf. Richards v. Duke Univ., 480
F.Supp.2d 222, 232-33 (D.D.C. 2007) (dismissing a
plaintiff's complaint under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(1) because
the plaintiff's allegations of “roving surveillance
that followed her everywhere she went” were
“fantastic to the point of being patently insubstantial
and warrant[ed] a dismissal”).
court thus overrules plaintiff's Objection to Judge
Gale's Report and Recommendation. The court also accepts
the March 6, 2107 Report and Recommendation and adopts it as
THEREFORE ORDERED BY THE COURT THAT plaintiff's Objection
to the Report and Recommendation of Magistrate Judge Gale
(Doc. 9) is overruled,  Judge Gale's Report and
Recommendation (Doc. 8) is adopted in its entirety, and this
action is dismissed.