United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
ALVIN L. BLIZZARD, and RUSSELL B. MOTT, Plaintiffs,
NEIL THORESON, et al., Defendants.
DENYING PLAINTIFF ALVIN BLIZZARD’S MOTION FOR LEAVE TO
PROCEED WITHOUT PREPAYING FILING FEE (DKT. NO. 2) AND
DISMISSING COMPLAINT AS TO BLIZZARD FOR FAILURE TO PAY FILING
FEE AND FAILURE TO PROSECUTE CASE; GRANTING PLAINTIFF RUSSELL
MOTT’S MOTION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME TO PAY INITIAL
PARTIAL FILING FEE (DKT. NO. 10), GRANTING HIS MOTION FOR
LEAVE TO PROCEED WITHOUT PREPAYING FILING FEE (DKT. NO. 2),
SCREENING COMPLAINT UNDER 28 U.S.C. §1915A, DISMISSING
COMPLAINT AS TO MOTT BECAUSE HIS CLAIMS ARE NOT RIPE, AND
PAMELA PEPPER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Alvin Blizzard and Russell Mott are Wisconsin state prisoners
who are representing themselves. On April 11, 2019, they
filed a joint complaint under 42 U.S.C. §1983, alleging
that the defendants violated their rights under federal law.
Dkt. No. 1. This decision resolves their joint motion for
leave to proceed without prepaying the filing fee, dkt. no.
2, and Mott’s motion for an extension of time to pay
the initial partial filing fee, dkt. no. 10; it also screens
their complaint, dkt. no. 1.
Joint Motion for Leave to Proceed without Prepaying the
Filing Fee (Dkt. No. 2)
Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) applies to this case
because the plaintiffs were prisoners when they filed their
complaint. See 28 U.S.C. §1915(h). The PLRA
allows the court to give a prisoner plaintiff the ability to
proceed without prepaying the entire civil case filing fee.
28 U.S.C. §1915(a)(2). When funds exist, the prisoner
must pay an initial partial filing fee. 28 U.S.C.
§1915(b)(1). He then must pay the balance of the filing
fee over time, through deductions from his prisoner account.
Id. The Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has
instructed that, in cases where the PLRA applies, each
prisoner plaintiff must pay the entire filing fee. See
Boriboune v. Berge, 391 F.3d 852, 855-56 (7th Cir.
Plaintiff Mott’s Request to Proceed without
Prepaying the Filing Fee (Dkt. No. 2)
26, 2019, the court ordered Mott to pay an initial partial
filing fee of $234.64. Dkt. No. 7. About a month later, the
court received from Mott a motion for an extension of time to
pay that initial partial filing fee; he asked the court for
help getting his institution to release the money to the
court. Dkt. No. 10. Before the court ruled on that motion,
however, it received from Mott a payment of $350,
see dkt. no. 12, which covers the full filing fee
for indigent plaintiffs. The court will grant Mott’s
motion for an extension of time to pay the initial partial
filing fee, effective back to the date the fee was due (July
17, 2019), dkt. no. 10, and will grant his motion to proceed
without prepayment of the filing fee, dkt. no. 2.
Blizzard’s Request to Proceed without Prepaying the
Filing Fee (Dkt. No. 2)
after the plaintiffs filed their joint request to proceed
without prepaying the filing fee, the clerk’s office
sent each of them a letter informing them that before the
court would consider their request, each plaintiff must file
a certified copy of his institutional trust account statement
for the six months preceding the filing of their complaint.
Dkt. No. 3.
plaintiff complied with this request, so on May 29, 2019, the
court ordered that by June 21, 2019, each plaintiff must file
a certified copy of his trust account statement covering the
six months prior to the date on which they filed their
complaint (October 2018 through March 2019). Dkt. No. 4. The
court warned the plaintiffs that if they did not comply with
the court’s order, the court might dismiss their
next day, the court received a letter from the plaintiffs
explaining that only recently had they had received the
letter from the clerk’s office instructing them to file
their trust account statements. Dkt. No. 5. They asked if the
court would “accept [their] late notice,” and
they confirmed their interest in continuing with the case.
Id. The plaintiffs’ letter was dated May 27,
2019, two days before the court entered its order, suggesting
that the court’s order and the plaintiffs’ letter
had crossed in the mail.
12, 2019, the court received Mott’s trust account
statement. Dkt. No. 6. Blizzard did not file his trust
account statement by the June 21 deadline. According to the
Department of Corrections inmate locator, Blizzard moved from
the Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility (the institution
where he was housed when the plaintiffs filed their
complaint) to Dodge Correctional Institution on May 31, 2019;
he was transferred to Fox Lake Correctional Institution on
August 22, 2019. See
https://appsdoc.wi.gov/lop/home.do (last accessed
August 29, 2019). It is likely that Blizzard did not receive
the court’s May 29 order requiring him to file his
trust account statement by June 21, 2019.
the plaintiffs’ May 30 letter acknowledged that
Blizzard received the letter from the clerk’s office
notifying him of his obligation to submit a certified copy of
his prison trust account statement. That letter concluded
with the following warning: “Failure to comply with
this requirement may result in the Court’s dismissal of
your case.” Dkt. No. 3 (emphasis in the original).
knowing about this requirement for more than three months,
Blizzard has not filed a certified copy of his trust account
statement. The court will deny his motion to proceed without
prepayment of the filing fee and will dismiss the complaint
as to Blizzard based on ...