United States District Court, D. Kansas
DAVID B. EDMINSTER, Plaintiff,
SHERIFF DEDEKE, MELISSA WARDROP, MAJOR DEDEKE, LT. LORENZO, LT. O'BRIEN, ADVANCED CORRECTIONAL HEALTHCARE, SGT. PATTERSON, SGT. SIBOLD, SGT. MASONER, Defendants.
Gary Sebelius, U.S. Magistrate Judge.
matter comes before the court upon plaintiff's Motion to
Appoint Counsel (ECF No. 35). The court previously granted
plaintiff David B. Edminster, appearing pro se,
leave to proceed in forma pauperis pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 1915. Mr. Edminster, a former inmate at the
Leavenworth County Jail, claims defendants violated his civil
rights concerning his medical treatment while he was
motion, Mr. Edminster contends (1) he is unable to afford
counsel; (2) he has limited knowledge of the law and the
issues in this case are complex; (3) an attorney would be
better able to present the case at trial; and (4) he has made
repeated efforts to personally obtain counsel.
1915(e)(1) provides that the “court may request an
attorney to represent any person unable to afford
counsel.” In addition to considering the
movant's financial need, if the court determines the
movant has a colorable claim, it “should consider the
nature of the factual issues raised in the claim and the
ability of the plaintiff to investigate the crucial
facts.” The Tenth Circuit has adopted several
factors for determining whether appointment of counsel is
appropriate, including: “the merits of the
litigant's claims, the nature of the factual issues
raised in the claims, the litigant's ability to present
his claims, and the complexity of the legal issues raised by
the claims.” The movant bears the burden of convincing
the court that his claims are sufficiently meritorious to
warrant appointing counsel. Whether to appoint counsel is
left to the trial court's sound discretion.
factual issues presented in Mr. Edminster's amended
complaint are not complex. They involve his medical treatment
while he was incarcerated, and as such, the court would
expect Mr. Edminster to be familiar with those circumstances.
However, the complexity of the issues raised by the claims is
significant. Even so, Mr. Edminster has not demonstrated that
he lacks the ability to present his claims. Based upon a
review of the documents he has filed, the court finds
plaintiff capable of preparing and presenting this case
without the aid of counsel. His motion states he lacks any
legal education or experience. This is true of the majority
of pro se litigants appearing in this court.
Although an attorney might present plaintiff's case more
effectively, this fact alone does not warrant appointment of
counsel. Mr. Edminster has not identified any
unique circumstances that would hamper his ability to
prosecute his claims.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that plaintiff's
Motion for Appointment of Counsel (ECF No. 35) is denied.
IS SO ORDERED.
 Order, ECF No. 4.
 Second Am. Compl., ECF No. 18.