United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Amarillo Division
LESTER J. MUNN, TDCJ-CID No. 620696, Plaintiff,
ROBERT R. KING, et al., Defendants.
MEMORANDUM OPINION DISMISSING CIVIL RIGHTS
MATTHEW J. KACSMARYK UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
LESTER J. MUNN, acting pro se and while a prisoner
incarcerated in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice,
Institutional Division, has filed suit pursuant to Title 42,
United States Code, Section 1983 complaining against the
above-referenced defendants and has been granted permission
to proceed in forma pauperis. For the following reasons,
plaintiffs civil rights complaint is DISMISSED.
prisoner confined in any jail, prison, or other correctional
facility brings an action with respect to prison conditions
under any federal law, the Court may evaluate the complaint
and dismiss it without service of process, Ali v.
Higgs, 892 F.2d 438, 440 (5th Cir. 1990), if it is
frivolous,  malicious, fails to state a claim upon
which relief can be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a
defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. §
1915A; 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). The same standards will
support dismissal of a suit brought under any federal law by
a prisoner confined in any jail, prison, or other
correctional facility, where such suit concerns prison
conditions. 42 U.S.C. 1997e(c)(1). A Spears hearing
need not be conducted for every pro se
complaint. Wilson v. Barrientos, 926 F.2d
480, 483 n.4 (5th Cir. 1991).
time of filing this complaint, plaintiff was a prisoner
incarcerated at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice
(TDCJ) Clements Unit in Amarillo, Texas. By his complaint,
plaintiff argues that defendants left his property in the
hallway. (ECF No. 3). As a result, plaintiff claims personal
items were stolen. Plaintiff also claims that several items
were taken when his property was searched. According to the
grievances attached to his complaint, plaintiffs property
items were missing following his temporary transport to a
adequate post-deprivation remedy for deprivation of property
under color of law eliminates any due process claim under
§ 1983, regardless of whether the deprivation is
negligent or intentional. See Parratt v. Taylor, 451
U.S. 527 (1981); Hudson v. Palmer, 468 U.S. 517
(1984). Under the Pratt/Hudson doctrine, a district
court may dismiss a loss of property claim and require the
plaintiff to pursue state remedies. A plaintiff may then
pursue a claim under § 1983 only after those remedies
are denied on grounds other than the merits of the claim.
See Thompson v. Steele, 709 F.2d 381, 383 (5th Cir.
1983). The burden is on the inmate to show that the
post-deprivation remedy is inadequate. See Myers v.
Klevenhagan, 97 F.3d 91, 94 (5th Cir. 1996).
law allows recovery of monetary damages for loss of property
that has been taken without authorization. See Murphy v.
Collins, 26 F.3d 541, 543 (5th Cir. 1994) (in Texas, the
tort of conversion fulfills this requirement); see also
Beam v. Voss, 568 S.W.2d 413, 420-21 (Tex. Civ. App.-San
Antonio 1978, no writ) (conversion is the unauthorized and
unlawful assumption and exercise of dominion and control over
the personal property of another, to the exclusion of or
inconsistent with the owner's rights). To the extent that
plaintiff alleges that defendants willfully seized property
in violation of his rights, there is no indication that he
has instituted an action in state court to pursue these
reasons set forth above and pursuant to Title 28, United
States Code, sections 1915A and 1915(e)(2), as well as Title
42, United States Code, section 1997e(a), it is ORDERED that
the Civil Rights Complaint by plaintiff filed pursuant to
Title 42, United States Code, section 1983 be DISMISSED
without prejudice for failure to state a claim.