United States District Court, N.D. Mississippi, Greenville Division
ORDER DENYING PETITIONER'S MOTION FOR
RECONSIDERATION, DISMISSING PETITION FOR A WRIT OF HABEAS
CORPUS AS RES JUDICATA
MICHAEL P. MILLS, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE NORTHERN
DISTRICT OF MISSISSIPPI
matter comes before the court, sua sponte, on
consideration for dismissal. The petitioner, Thomas Edward
Campbell, originally filed the instant case as an action
under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 challenging the conditions of his
confinement. However, he included in his complaint various
claims for habeas corpus relief under 28 U.S.C.
§ 2254. The court directed the Clerk's Office to
open a new habeas corpus case using the § 1983
complaint and to send Mr. Campbell the proper form for
seeking § 2254 relief. The court also ordered the
petitioner to complete and return that form to this court
within 30 days of the date of that order (April 20, 2016).
Mr. Campbell did not do so, and the court dismissed the
petition without prejudice on August 30, 2016, for failure to
comply with an order of the court.
Campbell sought reconsideration of that decision on September
9, 2016, stating that he had actually mailed the petition to
the court on March 3, 2016, which, the court notes, was
before the court issued the order to complete and
return the proper form. Within his motion to reconsider, Mr.
Campbell included a habeas corpus petition on the
§ 2254 form, and stated that he had also filed a
habeas corpus petition regarding the same issues in
the United States District Court for the Southern District of
Mississippi in “Civil Action No.
3:15CV803-TSL-RHW.” A review of Mr. Campbell's petition
presented in the present case reveals that it is simply a
photocopy of the petition for a writ of habeas
corpus that he filed in the Southern District on March
3, 2016 (the date he says he mailed the petition to this
court). Campbell v. Hampton, 3:16CV130-HTW-LRA
(S.D.Miss.) Thus, Mr. Campbell elected to file his habeas
corpus petition in the Southern District, rather than
this court. The Southern District dismissed the petition
without prejudice for failure to exhaust state remedies on
November 29, 2016.
R. Civ. P. 59(e)
court interprets the instant motion to reconsider, using the
liberal standard for pro se litigants set forth in
Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519 (1972), as a motion
to amend judgment under Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e). An order granting
relief under Rule 59(e) is appropriate when: (1) there has
been an intervening change in the controlling law, (2) where
the movant presents newly discovered evidence that was
previously unavailable, or (3) to correct a manifest error of
law or fact. Schiller v. Physicians Res. Grp. Inc.,
342 F.3d 563, 567 (5th Cir. 2003). The petitioner
has neither asserted nor proven any of the justifications to
amend a judgment under Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e). Indeed, the case
was dismissed because he failed to follow the court's
order to complete and return the proper habeas
corpus form to this court within thirty days. He did not
do so - and, instead, elected to file the form in the United
States District Court for the Southern District of
Mississippi. As such, the petitioner's request to alter
or amend judgment will be denied.
Judicata and Collateral Estoppel
addition, now that the Southern District has ruled on Mr.
Campbell's habeas corpus claims for relief, all
of the claims the plaintiff brings in this case (which are
identical to those in the previous case) are barred by the
doctrine of res judicata, (claim preclusion), and by
the related doctrine of collateral estoppel (issue
preclusion). Res judicata means “a thing
decided;” the doctrine states that a final judgment on
the merits rendered by a court of competent jurisdiction is
conclusive as to the parties and their privies; therefore,
attempts to litigate the matter further are barred.
Cromwell v. County of Sac., 94 U.S. 351, 352 (1876),
Kaspar Wire Works, Inc. v. Leco Eng'g & Mach.,
Inc., 575 F.2d 530, 535 (5th Cir. 1978).
Res judicata bars a plaintiff from bringing a second
suit based upon the same event or series of events by
asserting additional facts or proceeding under a
different legal theory; the doctrine prevents
“litigation of all grounds for, or defenses to,
recovery that were previously available to the parties,
regardless of whether they were asserted or determined in the
prior proceeding.” Brown v. Felsen, 442 U.S.
127, 131, 99 S.Ct. 2205, 60 L.Ed.2d 767 (1979); see also
Goldberg v. R. J. Longo Constr. Co., 54 F.3d 243, 246
(5thCir. 1995) (res judicata bars claims
that were or could have been raised in prior actions). In the
Fifth Circuit res judicata bars a claim if: (1) the
parties are the same in both actions, (2) the prior judgment
is rendered by a court of competent jurisdiction, (3) the
prior judgment was final on the merits; and (4) the cases
involve the same cause of action. Travelers Ins. Co. v.
St. Jude Hospital of Kenner, 37 F.3d 193, 195
(5th Cir. 1994). Two cases involve the same cause
of action if both cases arise out of the same nucleus of
operative facts. Id.
estoppel, or issue preclusion, on the other hand,
precludes relitigation of issues actually adjudicated, and
essential to the judgment, in prior litigation involving a
party to the first case. Allen v. McCurry, 449 U.S.
90, 94, 101 S.Ct. 411, 66 L.Ed.2d 308 (1980). The claims at
issue in both cases are: (1) lack of notice for a
disciplinary hearing, (2) being threatened with mace after
requests for medical treatment, (3) being framed for a rule
violation, (4) a move to another facility terminating his
grievance process, and (5) the reinstatement of Rule
Violation Reports that had already been administratively
doctrine of res judicata bars the plaintiff from
relitigating any claims arising out of and any suits arising
out of those events as to any parties he actually sued
regarding those events. Therefore, under the doctrine of
claim preclusion, all of the plaintiff's claims against
Sharon Hamton, Marshall Fisher, R. Pennington, and Timothy
Morris should be dismissed as frivolous. Further, under the
doctrine of issue preclusion, all of the plaintiff's
claims must be dismissed as frivolous, as a valid judgment
has been entered against the plaintiff in Campbell v.
Hampton, 3:16CV130-HTW-LRA (S.D.Miss.) covering these
precise issues. Therefore, under the doctrines of claim
preclusion and issue preclusion, the plaintiff's claims
against all respondents must be dismissed as frivolous.
the petitioner's motion  for reconsideration is
DENIED because he has not met the
requirements of Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e) - and because all of his
claims are barred under the doctrines of res
judicata and collateral estoppel.
Error! Main Document
Only. The court takes judicial notice of prior
proceedings involving the petitioner, both state and federal.
Moore v. Estelle, 526 F.2d ...