United States District Court, D. Massachusetts
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
ALLISON D. BURROUGHS U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE
reasons set forth below, the court orders that this action be
transferred to the United States District Court for the
District of New Hampshire.
30, 2018, the clerk received for filing a complaint filed by
Lisa Jacobs (“Jacobs”). With her complaint,
Jacobs filed an affidavit and motion for emergency service
and leave to proceed in forma pauperis. Jacobs
represents that she is a Massachusetts citizen now in the
custody of the Cheshire County Department of Corrections in
Keene, New Hampshire. Jacobs's complaint asserts both
federal question jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
1331 and diversity jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
1332 as bases for this court's subject matter
seventeen-page, handwritten complaint recounts events
surrounding Jacobs' July 25, 2015 arrest by the
Fitzwilliam police in Fitzwilliam, New Hampshire and her
subsequent litigation in the state courts of New Hampshire.
The complaint names the following 16 defendants: the
Fitzwilliam Police Department and two Fitzwilliam police
officers (Joseph Fillipi and Hailey Rae); the Town of
Fitzwilliam; the Cheshire County Sheriff Eli Rivera; Cheshire
County Attorney Chris McLaughlin; the Cheshire County
Department of Correction; the New Hampshire State Police; the
State of New Hampshire; John Doe, a real person whose
identity is not yet know to Jacobs; Former New Hampshire
Attorney General Joseph Foster; New Hampshire Attorney
General Gordon MacDonald; Robert Quinn, New Hampshire State
Police; New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu; United States
Senator Maggie Hassan; and Richard Tracy of the New Hampshire
Attorney General's Office.
Court's records indicate that this action is one of six
complaints filed against New Hampshire defendants concerning
alleged civil rights violations. See Jacobs v. Fillipi,
et al., C.A. No. 18-11505-JCB (filed Jul. 18, 2018);
Jacobs v. Fillipi, et al., C.A. No. 18-11533-NMG
(filed Jul. 23, 2018); Jacobs v. Fillipi, et al.,
C.A. No. 18-11551-DJC (filed Jul. 24, 2018); Jacobs v.
Fillipi, et al., C.A. No. 18-11558-WGY (filed Jul. 25,
2018); Jacobs v. Fillipi, et al., C.A. No.
18-11603-LTS (filed Jul. 31, 2018); and Jacobs v.
Fillipi, et al., C.A. No. 18-11604-ADB (filed Jul. 31,
Jacobs contends that subject matter jurisdiction lies in the
District of Massachusetts, venue is not proper in this court
under the relevant venue statue.
28 U.S.C. § 1391(b), a civil action may be brought in
(1) a judicial district in which any defendant resides, if
all defendants are residents of the State in which the
district is located; (2) a judicial district in which a
substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to
the claim occurred, or a substantial part of property that is
the subject of the action is situated; or (3) if there is no
district in which an action may otherwise be brought as
provided in this section, any judicial district in which any
defendant is subject to the court's personal jurisdiction
with respect to such action.
28 U.S.C. § 1391(b).
subsections (1) and (3) of 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b) do not
establish venue in the District of Massachusetts because none
of the defendants reside in Massachusetts. “For the
purposes of venue, state officers ‘reside' in the
district where they perform their official duties.”
Smolen v. Brauer, 177 F.Supp.3d 797, 801 (W.D.N.Y.
2016) citing Crenshaw v. Syed, 686 F.Supp.2d 234,
237 (W.D.N.Y. 2010) (quotation omitted)). Likewise,
subsection (2) does not provide for venue within this
district because “a substantial part of the events or
omissions giving rise to the claim” did not occur in
the District of Massachusetts.
“there is a strong presumption in favor of
plaintiff's choice of forum, ” U.S. ex rel.
Ondis v. City of Woonsocket, RI, 480 F.Supp.2d 434, 436
(D. Mass. 2007) (citing Coady v. Ashcraft-Gerel, 223
F.3d 1, 11 (1st Cir. 2000)), here the defendants do not
reside in this District and Jacobs does not allege that a
substantial part of the events arose in this District. Thus,
venue is not proper in this court under 28 U.S.C. §
light of the above, the court finds that it is in the
interest of justice to transfer this action to the District
of New Hampshire for further proceedings. See 28
U.S.C. § 1404(a) (providing, in relevant part, that:
“For the convenience of parties and witnesses, in the
interest of justice, a district court may transfer any ...