Cullifer v. Craig ( 2002 )

  •                        IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
                                    FOR THE FIFTH CIRCUIT
                                                No. 02-40403
                                              Summary Calendar
    LARRY CRAIG, Judge; RICK PERRY, Governor of Texas;
    HENRY CUELLAR, Secretary of State, Texas; CAROLE W. CLARK,
                          Appeal from the United States District Court
                                 for the Eastern District of Texas
                                     USDC No. 6:01-CV-362
                                          October 28, 2002
    Before JONES, STEWART and DENNIS, Circuit Judges.
            Alva Grissom Cullifer (“Cullifer”) appeals the district court’s dismissal of her 42 U.S.C. §
    1983 civil rights action. Cullifer argues that the defendants violated her constitutional rights because
    they denied her a fair hearing regarding the transfer of a piece of real property. Cullifer contends that
    the Texas state courts erro neously determined that the defendants were entitled to summary
    judgment. A district court’s ruling on a FED. R. CIV. P. 12(b)(6) motion and its legal determinations
               Pursuant to 5TH CIR. R. 47.5, the court has determined that this opinion should not be
    published and is not precedent except under the limited circumstances set forth in 5TH CIR.
    R. 47.5.4.
    regarding subject matter jurisdiction are reviewed de novo. Barrientos v. Reliance Standard Life Ins.
    911 F.2d 1115
    , 1116 (5th Cir. 1990); United States v. Alvarado, 
    201 F.3d 379
    , 381 (5th Cir.
             Federal district courts lack jurisdiction to engage in appellate review of state-court judgments.
    See Dist. of Columbia Court of Appeals v. Feldman, 
    460 U.S. 462
    , 476, 482 (1983); Rooker v.
    Fidelity Trust Co., 
    263 U.S. 413
    , 415-16 (1923). “When issues raised in a federal court are
    inextricably intertwined with a state judgment and the court is in essence being called upon to review
    the state-court decision, the court lacks subject matter jurisdiction.” Davis v. Bayless, 
    70 F.3d 367
    375 (5th Cir. 1995)(citations omitted). Because Cullifer challenged the decisions of the Texas state
    courts, her 42 U.S.C. § 1983 complaint constituted a request that the district court review a state
    court decision. Accordingly, the district court lacked jurisdiction to consider Cullifer’s complaint.