United States District Court, D. Idaho
REUBEN D. LEHMANN, Plaintiff,
JUDGE CALHOUN, PRSECUTING ATTORNEY ZACHARY PALL, AND OFFICER CHRISTENSEN Defendants.
ORDER ADOPTING REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
J. LODGE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
March 1, 2016, United States Magistrate Judge Candy W. Dale
issued a Report and Recommendation in this matter. (Dkt.19.)
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1), the parties had
fourteen days in which to file written objections to the
Report and Recommendation. Plaintiff Reuben D. Lehmann filed
an objection and affidavit of facts. No response to the
objection was filed by Defendants.
to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C), this Court "may
accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the findings
and recommendations made by the magistrate judge." Where
the parties object to a report and recommendation, this Court
"shall make a de novo determination of those portions of
the report which objection is made." Id. Where,
however, no objections are filed the district court need not
conduct a de novo review. In United States v.
Reyna-Tapia, 328 F.3d 1114, 1121 (9th Cir. 2003), the
court interpreted the requirements of 28 U.S.C. §
The statute [28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C)] makes it clear
that the district judge must review the magistrate
judge's findings and recommendations de novo if objection
is made, but not otherwise. As the Peretz Court
instructed, "to the extent de novo review is required to
satisfy Article III concerns, it need not be exercised unless
requested by the parties." Peretz, 501 U.S. at
939 (internal citation omitted). Neither the Constitution nor
the statute requires a district judge to review, de novo,
findings and recommendations that the parties themselves
accept as correct. See Ciapponi, 77 F.3d at 1251
("Absent an objection or request for review by the
defendant, the district court was not required to engage in
any more formal review of the plea proceeding.");
see also Peretz, 501 U.S. at 937-39 (clarifying that
de novo review not required for Article III purposes unless
requested by the parties) . . . .
See also Wang v. Masaitis, 416 F.3d 993, 1000 &
n.13 (9th Cir. 2005).
case, since an objection was filed, the Court conducted a
de novo determination of the Report and
Recommendation and Order Re: First Request for Judicial
Notice. The Court has, however, reviewed the Report and
Recommendation and Order as well as the record in this matter
and finds no clear error on the face of the record. Moreover,
the Court finds the Report and Recommendation and Order is
well-founded in the law based on the facts of this particular
case and this Court is in agreement with the same.
Lehmann argues his civil rights were violated by the state
court Magistrate Judge, the prosecuting attorney and the
officer issued the original violation for driving without
privileges since Plaintiff's driver's license had
been suspended in Oregon. Lehmann took the matter to trial
and a jury found him guilty of violating Idaho Code §
18-8001. That matter is currently on appeal.
Judge Calhoun filed a motion to dismiss the Complaint based
on a failure to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted since judges are entitled to absolute immunity to
suites for monetary damages for their judicial acts. Judge
Dale found Judge Calhoun was entitled to absolute immunity
for all actions related to Plaintiff's criminal
proceedings and that leave to amend would be futile.
Plaintiff objects that judicial immunity is not appropriate
where his rights have been violated by the judge's
rulings and statements in his criminal trial.
Court agrees with Judge Dale that the motion to dismiss
should be granted. The law is clear that judges are entitled
to judicial immunity for their judicial acts. Nixon v.
Fitzgerald, 457 U.S. 731, 751-752 (1982). All the
alleged improper actions by Judge Calhoun were acts in
performance of his job as a judge and are entitled to
absolute immunity. The Court understands that Plaintiff has a
different interpretation of a judge's duties and that
Plaintiff mistakenly thinks he can serve documents on the
Court that require the Court to respond to his demands. This
is not how the judicial system works.
arguments regarding Judge Calhoun's failure to respond to
a “Certified Delegation of Authority Order” is
one example of the meritless arguments being made by
Plaintiff. Under the Constitution, the courts are empowered
to interpret and apply the laws of the land. Citizens do not
have the authority to issue demands upon a Court. Citizens
can file complaints and motions, but the judge has the
ultimate say in a court action and the judge's orders are
subject to being reviewed on appeal to prevent abuses of
discretion or clearly erroneous rulings. Judges must be free
to decide cases based upon the law and without the fear of
being sued civilly for fulfilling their duties. This is why
we have judicial immunity for judges when they are performing
their judicial duties. That is exactly what happened in this
case. Judge Calhoun was performing his judicial duties in
presiding over the criminal jury trial. Plaintiff can appeal
the rulings, but he cannot hold the judge personally liable
for any errors.
“authority” for how the judge has violated his
rights is not a correct statement of the law and does not
defeat this Court's finding that Judge Calhoun is
entitled to judicial immunity from Plaintiff's claims.
Plaintiff's objection is denied.
Plaintiff appears to object to the Court's order taking
judicial notice of certain court filings, but not his
filings. This Court finds the judicial notice taken by Judge
Dale of certain court filings and Idaho statutes is proper
under Federal Rules of Evidence 201. Plaintiff's request
for judicial notice is denied as his pleadings are merely
statements of his arguments, not judgments of the Court ...