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Sameshima v. United States

United States District Court, D. Hawaii

December 4, 2015

WILLIAM G. SAMESHIMA, Plaintiff,
v.
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, TREASURE DEPARTMENT, et al., Defendants.

ORDER DISMISSING CASE AND ORDERING RETURN OF FILING FEE

DERRICK K. WATSON, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

INTRODUCTION

On October 15, 2015, Plaintiff William G. Sameshima, proceeding pro se, filed a complaint and Application to Proceed in District Court Without Prepaying Fees or Costs (“application”). On October 23, 2015, the Court dismissed Sameshima’s complaint and denied as moot his application. Dkt. No. 8. In its October 23, 2015 Order, the Court granted Sameshima leave to file an amended complaint by November 16, 2015, and cautioned him that failure to file an amended complaint by the deadline, would result in the dismissal of this action. Despite an extension and repeated warnings from the Court, Sameshima has not filed an amended complaint. Because he failed to comply with the Court’s orders, this action is dismissed without prejudice, and the Clerk’s Office is directed to refund the filing fee paid by Sameshima on November 2, 2015.

BACKGROUND

The Court’s October 23, 2015 Order explained the deficiencies in the original complaint and provided guidance on the filing of an amended complaint. Dkt. No. 8 at 10-12. On November 2, 2015, Sameshima paid the statutory filing fee, but did not file an amended complaint. Dkt. No. 9. On November 17, 2015, after the Court’s deadline to file an amended complaint had passed without compliance by Sameshima, the Court sua sponte granted Plaintiff an extension until December 2, 2015 to file his amended complaint, and again cautioned that the failure to file an amended complaint by the new deadline would result in the automatic dismissal of this action without further notice. Dkt. No. 10. The Court explained to Sameshima that his original complaint had been dismissed, and that no complaint is currently before the Court. Id.

On November 25, 2015, Sameshima filed a document, which the Court liberally construed as a Motion for Reconsideration of the Court’s previous rulings. Dkt. No. 11. The Court denied the Motion on November 30, 2015, once more admonishing Sameshima as follows:

The Court again CAUTIONS Sameshima that the failure to file an amended complaint by December 2, 2015 in conformance with the Court’s prior guidance will result in the automatic dismissal of this action without further notice.

Dkt. No. 11. Sameshima, however, has yet to file an amended complaint, as specifically directed by the Court’s previous orders.

DISCUSSION

Sameshima is proceeding pro se, and, therefore, the Court liberally construes his pleadings. See Eldridge v. Block, 832 F.2d 1132, 1137 (9th Cir. 1987) (“The Supreme Court has instructed the federal courts to liberally construe the ‘inartful pleading’ of pro se litigants.”) (citing Boag v. MacDougall, 454 U.S. 364, 365 (1982) (per curiam)).

Courts have the authority to dismiss actions for failure to prosecute or for failure to comply with court orders. See Link v. Wabash R.R. Co., 370 U.S. 626, 629-31 (1962) (“The power to invoke this sanction is necessary in order to prevent undue delays in the disposition of pending cases and to avoid congestion in the calendars of the District Courts.”). The Court has discretion to dismiss a plaintiff’s action for failure to comply with an order requiring him to file an amended pleading within a specified time period. Pagtalunan v. Galaza, 291 F.3d 639, 640 (9th Cir. 2002). Before dismissing an action for failure to prosecute, the Court must weigh: “(1) the public’s interest in expeditious resolution of litigation; (2) the court’s need to manage its docket; (3) the risk of prejudice to defendants/respondents; (4) the availability of less drastic alternatives; and (5) the public policy favoring disposition of cases on their merits.” Id. at 642 (citing Ferdik v. Bonzelet, 963 F.2d 1258, 1260-61 (9th Cir. 1992)).

Upon careful consideration of these factors, the Court reluctantly concludes that dismissal is warranted under the circumstances. The Court’s October 23, 2015 was clear:

Because amendment may be possible, the Court GRANTS leave to file an amended complaint, consistent with the terms of this Order, by November 16, 2015. This Order limits Sameshima to the filing of an amended complaint that attempts to cure the specific deficiencies identified in this Order. . . .
Sameshima is granted leave to file an amended complaint by no later than November 16, 2015. The Court cautions Sameshima that the failure to file an amended complaint, along with the required filing fee or a fully executed application to proceed without prepayment of fees by ...

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