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Marcedes v. Barrett

decided: December 16, 1971.

FRANK J. MARCEDES, JR., APPELLANT,
v.
THOMAS E. BARRETT, CLERK OF COURTS, ET AL.



Van Dusen and Rosen, Circuit Judges, and Becker, District Judge.

Author: Per Curiam

Opinion OF THE COURT

This appeal is from a district court order dismissing for failure to state a "cause of action," a complaint filed under the Civil Rights Acts (42 U.S.C. ยงยง 1983 and 1985) against a Clerk of State Courts, a Supervisor on the staff of such Clerk, the Administrative Assistant to the President Judge of the Allegheny County Court,*fn1 and the State Court Reporter who reported state criminal court proceedings*fn2 resulting in a January 23, 1967, sentence imposing on plaintiff imprisonment for not less than 1 1/2 nor more than 3 years. The complaint alleges that the refusal to furnish the notes of testimony denied "Plaintiff access to the courts" (page 5). In February 1967, plaintiff wrote the Clerk requesting a transcript of the criminal proceedings. On March 17, 1967, the President Judge wrote plaintiff that when the transcript had been "completed, a copy will be forwarded to the Institution where they will be available for inspection upon request of the Officials there."*fn3 The complaint concludes by praying for (a) "damages in excess of $75,000 for causing [plaintiff] delay in submitting his grievances to the courts . . .", (b) a court order "directing the defendants to make available copies of Trial Transcripts and Original Papers of Arrest and enjoining them from suppressing plaintiff from constructing his Legal Petitions," and (c) a court order directing that [an alleged] racist's picture be removed" from apparently the State Correctional Institution at Huntingdon (see pp. 9-10 of complaint).*fn4

After careful consideration of the complaint, we have determined that "its failure to state facts in support of its conclusions," see Gaito v. Ellenbogen, 425 F.2d 845, 849 (3d Cir. 1970); Negrich v. Hohn, 379 F.2d 213, 215 (3d Cir. 1967), and the judicial immunity of the defendants, acting as judicial and quasi-judicial officials, require the conclusion that the district court did not abuse its discretion in dismissing the complaint. See Bauers v. Heisel, 361 F.2d 581 (3d Cir. 1966), cert. denied, 386 U.S. 1021, 87 S. Ct. 1367, 18 L. Ed. 2d 457 (1967), and cases there cited; Lockhart v. Hoenstine, 411 F.2d 455, 459 (3d Cir. 1969) (prothonotary is a judicial or quasi-judicial officer entitled to immunity under the Civil Rights Acts); Stewart v. Minnick, 409 F.2d 826 (9th Cir. 1969) (court reporter and court clerk are quasi-judicial officers who "are clothed with judicial immunity"); cf. Gaito v. Ellenbogen, supra, 425 F.2d at 849.

The district court order will be ...


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