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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN
BILL SCHUETTE, et al.,
Case No. 13-cv-11126
HONORABLE STEPHEN J. MURPHY, III
ORDER ADOPTING REPORT AND
RECOMMENDATION (document no. 12), GRANTING
MOTIONS TO DISMISS (documents no. 2 and 6), AND DISMISSING CASE
This is an action by pro se defendant Willie Morris against defendants Michigan
Attorney General Bill Schuette, the Michigan Secretary of State, the Henry Ford Hospital,
the Kentucky Secretary of State, the U.S. Department of Veterans' Affairs, the Attorney
General of the United States, the U.S. Department of State, and the U.S. Attorney "for
Michigan." Morris' complaint alleges various civil rights violations against the defendants
to some underlying injury.
On April 11, 2013, Defendants Michigan Secretary of State and Attorney General Bill
Schuette moved to dismiss the complaint. And on May 14, 2013, the U.S. Attorney's Office
for the Eastern District of Michigan moved to dismiss the complaint as to all federal
defendants. The Court referred the motions to a magistrate judge for resolution. On July
11, 2013, the magistrate judge filed a Report and Recommendation ("Report") that
recommended granting the motions and dismissing the case.
The magistrate judge first concluded that Morris does not "indicate any particular relief
he is seeking." Report at 2, ECF No. 12. In a comprehensive examination of Morris's
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claims, the magistrate judge analyzed Morris's various claims for subject matter jurisdiction
and whether Morris stated a claim upon which relief can be granted.
With respect to the federal defendants the Report first concluded Morris was likely
attempting to assert claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The Report then concluded that
Morris's claims are subject to dismissal for several of reasons. First, Morris's complaint fails
to identify any waiver of sovereign immunity. Even if the Court were to infer a sovereign
immunity waiver under either the Federal Tort Claims Act ("FTCA") or a Bivens action,
Morris's claims should still be dismissed. First, because he fails to name the United States
as a plaintiff, the Court has no jurisdiction to consider an FTCA claim. Id. at 9. Second,
because Bivens actions against officials acting in there official capacity are still barred by
sovereign immunity, Morris's complaint remains barred. Id. at 11. The Report also
concluded that Morris's complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted
because the complaint makes no demand for any particular relief, in violation of Civil Rule
8(a)(3)'s relief requirement. Because of the vague nature of Morris's allegations, the Report
concluded it is difficult to discern what specific conduct Morris attributes to the Federal
Defendants, thereby failing to apprise them of what wrongdoing they are accused of. Id. at
With respect to the State of Michigan defendants, the Report concluded that Morris's
claims should be likewise be dismissed for failure to comply with Rule 8(a)'s pleading
requirements. The sole allegation against Schuette is that "the Michigan Attorney General"
is "a part of the hypocrisy." Similarly, the only allegation leveled at the Michigan Secretary
of State is that she "took Morris's sovereignty" after issuing it to him eight months prior.
Even employing the liberal standards of construction afforded to pro se complaints, the
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Report concluded Morris's claims regarding the State of Michigan defendants were so
vague that they fail to sufficiently apprise defendants of their alleged wrongful conduct. Id.
at 14. Additionally, the Report concluded Morris's claims against the State of Michigan
defendants should be dismissed to extent that Morris seeks to sue them in their official
capacity, as he is not permitted to seek money damages due to sovereign immunity. Id.
Finally, the Report suggests dismissing the remainder of the complaint against all the
remaining defendants sua sponte under Civil Rule 12(b)(1) for lack of subject-matter
jurisdiction with respect to both lack of diversity under 28 U.S.C. § 1332, and failure to
plead any facts that give this Court jurisdiction. Id. at 15.
Civil Rule 72(b) governs review of a magistrate judge's report and recommendation.
De novo review of the magistrate judge’s findings is only required if the parties “serve and
file specific written objections to the proposed findings and recommendations.” Fed. R. Civ.
P. 72(b)(2). Nevertheless, because a district judge always retains jurisdiction over a motion
after referring it to a magistrate judge, he is entitled to review the magistrate judge's
findings of fact and conclusions of law on his own initiative. See Thomas v. Arn, 474 U.S.
140, 154 (1985) (clarifying that while a district court judge need not review a report and
recommendation “de novo if no objections are filed, it does not preclude further review by
the district judge, sua sponte or at the request of a party, under a de novo or any other
Because neither the plaintiff nor defendants filed objections, de novo review of the
Report's conclusions is not required. Having reviewed the Report's analysis, in light of the
record, the Court finds that its conclusions are factually based and legally sound.
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Accordingly, it will adopt the Report's findings, grant the motions to dismiss, and dismiss
WHEREFORE, it is hereby ORDERED that the Magistrate Judge's Report and
Recommendation (document no. 12) is ADOPTED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the defendants' motions to dismiss (documents no.
2 and 6) are GRANTED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that this case is DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE.
Dated: July 30, 2013
s/Stephen J. Murphy, III
STEPHEN J. MURPHY, III
United States District Judge
I hereby certify that a copy of the foregoing document was served upon the parties and/or
counsel of record on July 30, 2013, by electronic and/or ordinary mail.