United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Florence Division
Bryan Harwell Chief United States District Judge
matter is before the Court for consideration of Plaintiff
Quintin LaPrix Davis's objections to the Report and
Recommendation (“R & R”) of United States
Magistrate Judge Kaymani D. West, who recommends summarily
dismissing his complaint without prejudice. See ECF
Nos. 11 & 14.
Magistrate Judge makes only a recommendation to the Court.
The Magistrate Judge's recommendation has no presumptive
weight, and the responsibility to make a final determination
remains with the Court. Mathews v. Weber, 423 U.S.
261, 270-71 (1976). The Court must conduct a de novo review
of those portions of the R & R to which specific
objections are made, and it may accept, reject, or modify, in
whole or in part, the recommendation of the Magistrate Judge
or recommit the matter with instructions. 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1); Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b).
Court must engage in a de novo review of every portion of the
Magistrate Judge's report to which objections have been
filed. Id. However, the Court need not conduct a de
novo review when a party makes only “general and
conclusory objections that do not direct the [C]ourt to a
specific error in the [M]agistrate [Judge]'s proposed
findings and recommendations.” Orpiano v.
Johnson, 687 F.2d 44, 47 (4th Cir. 1982). In the absence
of specific objections to the R & R, the Court reviews
only for clear error, Diamond v. Colonial Life & Acc.
Ins. Co., 416 F.3d 310, 315 (4th Cir. 2005), and the
Court need not give any explanation for adopting the
Magistrate Judge's recommendation. Camby v.
Davis, 718 F.2d 198, 199-200 (4th Cir. 1983).
December 2018, Plaintiff was tried and convicted by a jury in
this District of three federal crimes. See United
States v. Davis, No. 4:18-cr-00821-MGL (D.S.C.). In
October 2019, he filed the instant
Bivens action against the four above-captioned
Defendants-who are the Assistant United States Attorneys
involved in his criminal case-alleging his Sixth Amendment
right of confrontation was violated, seeking monetary
damages, and asking the Court to overturn his federal
conviction. See ECF No. 1. The Magistrate Judge
recommends summarily dismissing Plaintiff's complaint
because (1) Defendants are entitled to absolute prosecutorial
immunity, (2) Heck bars the claims related to his
conviction, and (3) amendment would be futile. See
ECF No. 11 at pp. 3-4.
“objections, ” Plaintiff acknowledges the
Magistrate Judge's recommendations regarding
prosecutorial immunity and Heck, but he does not
appear to dispute that these two legal doctrines preclude
relief. See ECF No. 14. Plaintiff also does not
specifically object to the Magistrate Judge's
determination that amendment of his complaint would be
futile. See generally Orpiano, 687 F.2d at 47
(recognizing de novo review is unnecessary when a party does
“not direct the court to a specific error in the
magistrate's proposed findings and
the Court has conducted a de novo review of the R & R and
agrees with the Magistrate Judge's conclusions that both
absolute prosecutorial immunity and Heck bar
Plaintiff's claims and that amendment of his complaint
would be futile. See Lyles v. Sparks, 79 F.3d 372,
376 (4th Cir. 1996) (“In Bivens-type actions,
. . . prosecutors enjoy absolute immunity for conduct
intimately associated with the judicial phase of the criminal
process.” (internal quotation marks omitted));
Covey v. Assessor of Ohio Cty., 777 F.3d 186, 197
(4th Cir. 2015) (recognizing Heck bars a
Bivens claim if (1) a judgment in favor of the
plaintiff would necessarily imply the invalidity of his
conviction and (2) the claim is brought by a plaintiff
currently in custody); Magwood v. Robinson, 784
Fed.Appx. 169, 170 & n.* (4th Cir. 2019) (recognizing a
“complaint cannot be saved by mere amendment” if
the plaintiff “cannot plead facts that satisfy
Heck's favorable termination requirement”
(citing Goode v. Cent. Virginia Legal Aid Soc'y,
Inc., 807 F.3d 619, 624 (4th Cir. 2015))). Accordingly,
the Court will overrule Plaintiff's objections and adopt
the R & R.
foregoing reasons, the Court OVERRULES
Plaintiff's objections, ADOPTS the
Magistrate Judge's R & R [ECF No. 11], and
DISMISSES Plaintiff's complaint
without prejudice and without issuance and service
IS SO ORDERED.