United States District Court, D. Montana, Great Falls Division
Johnston United States Magistrate Judge.
is Plaintiff Nikita Wood's Motion for Leave to Proceed in
Forma Pauperis (Doc. 1) and proposed Complaint (Doc. 2.). The
motion to proceed in forma pauperis will be granted. Based on
the sua sponte screening required by 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2), the Court finds that Ms. Woods's Complaint
fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. The
Court will require Ms. Woods to file an amended complaint by
February 6, 2017. If she fails to do so, her Complaint will
Woods filed this action in the Great Falls Division of the
District of Montana. (Doc. 2.) Venue is proper as the
defendants reside in Cascade County, Montana. Local Rule
3.2(b). The Court has personal jurisdiction over the parties,
all of whom are “found” in Montana. Fed.R.Civ.P.
4(k)(1)(A); Mont. R. Civ. P. 4(b). Ms. Woods attempts to
allege a violation under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, invoking
subject matter jurisdiction. 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The case
was assigned to United States District Judge Brian Morris and
referred to the undersigned under Local Rule 72.2(a)(1).
MOTION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS
Woods submitted an Application to Proceed in District Court
without Prepaying Fees or Costs; it appears she is unemployed
and does not have any income. (Doc. 1.) The Court finds this
application to be sufficient to make the showing 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(a) requires. Her request to proceed in forma
pauperis will be granted because it appears she lacks
sufficient funds to prosecute this action.
SUA SPONTE SCREENING PER 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)
complaint filed by any person proceeding in forma pauperis
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a) is subject to a
mandatory and sua sponte review and dismissal by the Court to
the extent the claims are frivolous, malicious, fail to state
a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seek monetary
relief from a defendant immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(2); Calhoun v. Stahl, 254 F.3d 845,
845 (9th Cir. 2001) (“[T]he provisions of 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915(e)(2)(B) are not limited to prisoners.”);
Lopez v. Smith, 203 F.3d 1122, 1126-27 (9th Cir.
2000) (en banc).
complaint is frivolous if it “lacks an arguable basis
either in law or in fact.” Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). A complaint fails to
state a claim upon which relief may be granted if a plaintiff
fails to allege the “grounds” of her
“entitlement to relief.” Bell Atlantic Corp.
v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). A complaint must
set forth “more than labels and conclusions, [or] a
formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of
action.” Id. It must “give the defendant
fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the grounds upon
which it rests.” Id.
plaintiff files a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, the
challenged action must have taken place “under the
color of state law.” Life Ins. Co. Of North America
v. Recihardt, 591 F.2d 499, 501 (9th 1979). A complaint
stating a claim under § 1983 against a private entity or
individual must show that the State “significantly
involved itself” in the alleged discriminatory action.
Id. Significant involvement does not exist when the
State merely regulates business conduct. Id.
Woods alleges that Defendants, a private entity and a private
individual, violated the Equal Protection Clause by placing
two different types of fire alarms in the apartment building
where Ms. Woods resided: one that only requires one step to
activate and another that requires two steps. Ms. Woods
alleges that the two-step fire alarms are located in an area
of the apartment building where the residents are