Stengel v. Black ( 2010 )


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  •     08-2721-cv
        Stengel v. Black
    
    
    
                                UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
                                    FOR THE SECOND CIRCUIT
    
                                         SUMMARY ORDER
    RULINGS BY SUMMARY ORDER DO NOT HAVE PRECEDENTIAL EFFECT. CITATION TO A
    SUMMARY ORDER FILED ON OR AFTER JANUARY 1, 2007, IS PERMITTED AND IS GOVERNED BY
    FEDERAL RULE OF APPELLATE PROCEDURE 32.1 AND THIS COURT’S LOCAL RULE 32.1.1. WHEN
    CITING A SUMMARY ORDER IN A DOCUMENT FILED WITH THIS COURT, A PARTY MUST CITE
    EITHER THE FEDERAL APPENDIX OR AN ELECTRONIC DATABASE (WITH THE NOTATION
    “SUMMARY ORDER”). A PARTY CITING A SUMMARY ORDER MUST SERVE A COPY OF IT ON ANY
    PARTY NOT REPRESENTED BY COUNSEL.
    
             At a stated term of the United States Court of Appeals for
        the Second Circuit, held at the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United
        States Courthouse, 500 Pearl Street, in the City of New York, on
        the 2nd day of March, two thousand ten.
    
        PRESENT:
                           ROBERT D. SACK,
                           ROBERT A. KATZMANN,
                                    Circuit Judges,
                           RICHARD J. SULLIVAN,*
                                    District Judge.
    
        __________________________________________
    
        Isaac Stengel,
    
                           Plaintiff-Appellant,
    
                           v.                                               08-2721-cv
    
        Bradford Black,
    
                  Defendant-Appellee.
        __________________________________________
    
        FOR APPELLANT:                (Alex Colgan - argued by); Isaac Stengel, pro
    
    
    
    
                 *
                 Richard J. Sullivan, of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New
        York, sitting by designation.
                        se, New York, NY.
    
    FOR APPELLEE:       Ambrose Richardson, Solomon Blum Heymann &
                        Stich LLP, New York, NY.
    
    
         Appeal from a judgment of the United States District Court
    
    for the Southern District of New York (Daniels, J.).
    
         UPON DUE CONSIDERATION, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED, ADJUDGED, AND
    
    DECREED that the judgment of the district court is AFFIRMED.
    
         Plaintiff-Appellant Isaac Stengel, pro se, appeals from the
    
    judgment of the United States District Court for the Southern
    
    District of New York (Daniels, J.), dismissing his complaint
    
    alleging replevin and due process claims.   We assume the parties’
    
    familiarity with the underlying facts, the procedural history of
    
    the case, and the issues on appeal.
    
         We review de novo a district court’s dismissal of a
    
    complaint pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil
    
    Procedure, see Chambers v. Time Warner, Inc., 
    282 F.3d 147
    , 152
    
    (2d Cir. 2002), and Rule 12(b)(2), see DiStefano v. Carozzi North
    
    America, Inc., 
    286 F.3d 81
    , 84 (2d Cir. 2001).   Similarly, in
    
    reviewing a district court’s dismissal of a complaint for lack of
    
    subject matter jurisdiction pursuant to Rule 12(b)(1), we review
    
    factual findings for clear error and legal conclusions de novo,
    
    accepting all material facts alleged in the complaint as true and
    
    drawing all reasonable inferences in the plaintiff’s favor.      See
    
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    Morrison v. National Australia Bank Ltd., 
    547 F.3d 167
    , 170 (2d
    
    Cir. 2008).
    
         Here, our independent review of the record and relevant case
    
    law reveals that Appellant’s complaint was properly dismissed.
    
    First, with respect to Appellant’s due process claim, lower
    
    federal courts lack subject matter jurisdiction in “cases brought
    
    by state-court losers complaining of injuries caused by state-
    
    court judgments rendered before the district court proceedings
    
    commenced and inviting district court review and rejection of
    
    those judgments.”    Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Saudi Basic Indus. Corp.,
    
    
    544 U.S. 280
    , 284 (2005) (explaining the Rooker-Feldman
    
    doctrine).    Appellant’s complaint satisfies all of the criteria
    
    for application of the Rooker-Feldman doctrine, in that: (1) he
    
    lost in an Ohio state court action; (2) he complains that he was
    
    injured by the Ohio state court judgment; (3) he has invited
    
    review and rejection of that judgment, arguing in his complaint
    
    that it was erroneous, and on appeal explicitly calling for it to
    
    be vacated; and (4) the Ohio judgment was entered before the
    
    commencement of the instant proceedings.   Accordingly,
    
    Appellant’s due process claim was properly dismissed.     See
    
    ACEquip Ltd. v. Am. Eng’g Corp., 
    315 F.3d 151
    , 155 (2d Cir. 2003)
    
    (“Our court may . . . affirm the district court’s judgment on any
    
    ground appearing in the record, even if the ground is different
    
    from the one relied on by the district court.”).   Furthermore, as
    
    the due process claim was the only alleged basis for federal
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    subject matter jurisdiction, it was proper for the district court
    
    to decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over Appellant’s
    
    replevin claim arising under state law.     See 28 U.S.C.
    
    § 1367(c)(3); Carnegie-Mellon Univ. v. Cohill, 
    484 U.S. 343
    , 350
    
    n.7 (1988) (“[I]n the usual case in which all federal-law claims
    
    are eliminated before trial, the balance of factors . . . will
    
    point toward declining to exercise jurisdiction over the
    
    remaining state-law claims.”).
    
         For the foregoing reasons, the order of the district court
    
    is hereby AFFIRMED.
    
                                     FOR THE COURT:
                                     Catherine O’Hagan Wolfe, Clerk
    
    
    
    
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