United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
VINCENT A. BAGBY, Plaintiff,
STATE FARM CASUALTY INSURANCE CO., and MICHAEL L. TIPSORD, Defendants.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
J. ROSENSTENGEL, CHIEF U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE
Vincent A. Bagby, proceeding pro se, filed this
action on December 7, 2018 (Doc. 1). He attempts to assert
insurance-related claims against Defendants that arose from a
collision with a City of Atlanta fire truck in 2010
(Id.). On January 11, 2019, the Court reviewed Mr.
Bagby's complaint and determined the jurisdictional
allegations were lacking, and the nature of his claims were
not discernable (Doc. 9). Mr. Bagby was ordered to amend his
complaint on or before February 11, 2019, and he was warned
that failure to do so would result in the dismissal of his
case for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and for failure
to conform with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)
Mr. Bagby failed to respond to the Court's Order in any
way, and this case was dismissed on February 15, 2019 (Docs.
10, 11). On February 27, 2019, Mr. Bagby filed a Motion for
Reconsideration (Doc. 12), a Motion for Appointment of
Counsel (Doc. 13), a Motion to Compel Service (Doc. 14), a
Motion for Summary Judgment (Doc. 15), and a Motion for
Judgment by Default (Doc. 16). The Court construes the Motion
for Reconsideration as a motion under Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 59(e), because it raises alleged errors of law and
fact. See Obriecht v. Raemisch, 517 F.3d 489, 493-94
(7th Cir. 2008). “A Rule 59(e) motion will be
successful only where the movant clearly establishes: (1)
that the court committed a manifest error of law or fact, or
(2) that newly discovered evidence precluded entry of
judgment.” Cincinnati Life Ins. Co. v. Beyrer,
722 F.3d 939, 954 (7th Cir. 2013) (citations and quotations
omitted). Relief under Rule 59(e) is an “extraordinary
remedy[y] reserved for the exceptional case.”
Foster v. DeLuca, 545 F.3d 582, 584 (7th Cir. 2008).
the Court dismissed this case for lack of jurisdiction
because it could not determine whether diversity jurisdiction
exists under 28 U.S.C. § 1332, whether Mr. Bagby's
claims involve a federal question pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 1331, or whether any other basis for subject matter
jurisdiction authorizes the Court to hear this case. Mr.
Bagby fails to allege the citizenship of one of the
defendants, Michael L. Tipsord. See Meyerson v.
Harrah's E. Chicago Casino, 299 F.3d 616, 617 (7th
Cir. 2002) (where the complaint did not sufficiently allege
diversity jurisdiction because it did not state the
citizenship of all of the defendants). Also, the complaint
refers to the City of Atlanta, Georgia, and other government
subdivisions as “co-defendants, ” and prays for
relief against them, but they are not named as defendant in
the caption (See Doc. 1, pp. 4, 18). To add to the
confusion, the complaint cites a multitude of federal laws,
including the criminal code, but the allegations are so
convoluted that it is impossible to determine whether a
federal question actually exists. In sum, the Court could not
determine the citizenship of the parties or the basis of Mr.
from the jurisdictional flaws, the Court also determined the
complaint fails to comply with Rule 8(a), which requires a
short and plain statement of the claim showing that the
pleader is entitled to relief. In this case, Mr. Bagby's
allegations do not meet the bare minimum pleading standard of
“giv[ing] the defendant fair notice of what the claim
is and the grounds upon which it rest.” Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007).
Mr. Bagby seeks to alter the judgment, arguing that the Court
erroneously dismissed his case. According to Mr. Bagby, the
Court incorrectly assumed that the City of Atlanta is a
defendant. This argument is a non-starter. The Court held
that diversity jurisdiction could not be determined because
Mr. Bagby does not allege the citizenship of Michael Tipsord.
In fact, Mr. Bagby still fails to point out Mr. Tipsord's
Mr. Bagby's post-judgment motion confirms that this case
does not involve a federal question. He explains that the
basis of the claim is breach of contract and “swear[s]
and aver[s] that a breach of contract has occurred.”
Although the complaint and the Rule 59 motion allege
Defendants committed federal felonies, private citizens like
Mr. Bagby have no right to bring an action under the criminal
code. Mathers v. HSBC Bank, No. 16 C 9572, 2018 WL
3831529, at *5 (N.D. Ill. Aug. 13, 2018) (citing Cent.
Bank of Denver, N.A. v. First Interstate Bank of Denver,
N.A., 511 U.S. 164, 190 (1994)).
Mr. Bagby asserts he is entitled to a default judgment
because Defendants failed to respond to his complaint. He
argues the Court is biased in favor of Defendants and as a
result, the Court overlooked the fact that Defendants never
filed an Answer. Mr. Bagby states that the conduct of the
Court “could be construed to be evidence of Fraud on
the Court, or even a Federal Honest Services Violation by
Court personnel.” Mr. Bagby's argument is
misplaced. Under Rule 12, a defendant must generally file an
answer “within 21 days after being served with the
summons and complaint.” In this case, the docket does
not indicate that Defendants were ever served. Although Mr.
Bagby suggests that they were, he offers no explanation for
Mr. Bagby's motion-and this action-are frivolous.
Accordingly, the Motion for Reconsideration (Doc. 12) is
DENIED. Accordingly, the Court need not
address the Motion for Appointment of Counsel (Doc. 13),
Motion to Compel Service (Doc. 14), Motion for Summary
Judgment (Doc. 15), or Motion for Judgment by Default (Doc.
16), because they are DENIED as moot.