United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
December 6, 2005.
BERNARD S. LEVI, Petitioner
RONNIE HOLT, Respondent.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: SYLVIA RAMBO, Senior District Judge
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Before the court is a motion for recusal of the undersigned
judge brought pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 455. The motion does not
state whether recusal is sought pursuant to sub section (a) or
(b). The motion is not supported by a brief as required by Middle
District Local Rule 7.5. Pursuant to that local rule, the court
can deem the motion withdrawn. The court, however, chooses to
address the motion on the merits.
Plaintiff alleges that the undersigned is "biased and
prejudiced against Petitioner" in adversely ruling on
Petitioner's motions. Thus, the court will address the motion as
falling under subsection (a) of 28 U.S.C. § 455.
Under subsection 455(a), a judge should apply an objective
standard in determining whether to recuse. The statute requires
recusal in any case "in which his impartiality might reasonably
be questioned." (28 U.S.C. § 455(a).) In Liteky v. United
States, 510 U.S. 540 (1994), the Court stated that
opinions formed by the judge on the basis of facts
introduced or events occurring in the course of the
current proceedings, or of prior proceedings, do not
constitute a basis for a bias or partiality motion
unless they display a deep-seated favoritism or
antagonism that would make fair judgment impossible. Id. at 555. In Byrne v. Nezbat, 261 F.3d 1075, 1103 (11th
Cir. 2001), the court held that "adverse rulings alone do not
provide a party with a basis for holding that the court's
impartiality is in doubt."
Petitioner has not cited anything but a couple of adverse
rulings which is insufficient to support a recusal. IT IS
THEREFORE ORDERED THAT the motion for recusal is DENIED.
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