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Walsh v. U.S. House of Representatives

United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania

June 13, 2017

JOHN WALSH, III, Plaintiff
v.
U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, Defendants

          Carlson, M.J.

          ORDER

          MALACHY E. MANNION United States District Judg

         On April 11, 2017, the court issued a Memorandum, (Doc. 6), and an Order, (Doc. 7), directing that the report of Judge Carlson, (Doc. 4), is ADOPTED IN ITS ENTIRETY, Walsh's objections, (Doc.5), are OVERRULED, and Walsh's complaint, (Docl), is DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.

         However, the court did not close this case. Rather, the court referred this case to Judge Carlson to conduct show cause proceedings, affording Walsh notice and an opportunity to be heard, and to issue a Report and Recommendation as to whether the court should issue a pre-filing injunction against Walsh under 28 U.S.C. §1651 (a), enjoining Walsh from filing any new civil action, motions, papers, or requests for relief in any civil actions in the Middle District of Pennsylvania without seeking and obtaining a court order allowing his filing.

         On April 18, 2017, Judge Carlson issued a Show Cause Order, (Doc. 8), directing as follows:

on or before May 18, 2017, the plaintiff [Walsh] shall respond to this Order and show cause why he should not be required to obtain the prior approval of the court before lodging any new complaints relating to the same subject matter of past frivolous litigation. A failure to respond to this Order in a timely manner may be deemed a waiver of any opportunity to contest this show cause order.

         On April 24 and April 25, 2017, Walsh filed two nonsensical documents. (Doc. 9, Doc. 10). Neither document responded to Judge Carlson's Show Cause Order in a coherent fashion.

         On April 27, 2017, Judge Carlson issued a Report and Recommendation in which he considered Walsh's two stated filings, (Doc. 9, Doc. 10), and “recommended that the court enter an order in this case requiring Mr. Walsh to obtain the prior approval of the court before lodging any new complaints relating to the same subject matter of his past frivolous litigation.” (Doc. 11).

         On May 16, 2017, Walsh filed a document entitled “Response To The Sad And Pathetic Correspondence From This Court Dated April 27, 2017.” (Doc. 12). The clerk of court docketed this document as objections to Judge Carlson's report. The document consists of three pages, five exhibits attached which are merely statements by Walsh that do not make any sense. Neither the document itself nor the exhibits have any relevance to the Show Cause Order Judge Carlson issued. Indeed, none of Walsh's filings present a meritorious basis for opposing an injunction order.

         When objections are timely filed to the report and recommendation of a magistrate judge, the district court must review de novo those portions of the report to which objections are made. 28 U.S.C. §636(b)(1); Brown v. Astrue, 649 F.3d 193, 195 (3d Cir. 2011). Although the standard is de novo, the extent of review is committed to the sound discretion of the district judge, and the court may rely on the recommendations of the magistrate judge to the extent it deems proper. Rieder v. Apfel, 115 F.Supp.2d 496, 499 (M.D.Pa. 2000) (citing United States v. Raddatz, 447 U.S. 667, 676 (1980)).

         For those sections of the report and recommendation to which no objection is made, the court should, as a matter of good practice, “satisfy itself that there is no clear error on the face of the record in order to accept the recommendation.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b), advisory committee notes; see also Univac Dental Co. v. Dentsply Intern., Inc., 702 F.Supp.2d 465, 469 (M.D.Pa. 2010) (citing Henderson v. Carlson, 812 F.2d 874, 878 (3d Cir. 1987) (explaining judges should give some review to every report and recommendation)). Nevertheless, whether timely objections are made or not, the district court may accept, not accept, or modify, in whole or in part, the findings or recommendations made by the magistrate judge. 28 U.S.C. §636(b)(1); Local Rule 72.31.

         This court, in its sound discretion, can impose restrictions upon a litigant's right to future litigation. See Abulkhair v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 405 Fed.Appx. 570 (3d Cir. 2011).

         In Grossberger v. Ruane, 535 Fed.Appx. 84, 86 (3d Cir. 2013), the Third Circuit stated:

A pre-filing injunction is an exception to the general rule of free access to the courts and its use against a pro se plaintiff must be approached with caution. See In re Oliver, 682 F.2d 443, 445 (3d Cir. 1982). However, a District Court may enjoin a pro se litigant from future filings so long as the injunction complies with three requirements: (1) the litigant must be continually abusing the judicial process; (2) the litigant must be given notice of the potential injunction and an opportunity to oppose the court's order; and (3) the ...

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