Every v. Jindal, 022111 FED5, 10-30492
|Opinion Judge:||PER CURIAM:|
|Party Name:||LEONARD EVERY, Plaintiff-Appellant v. BOBBY JINDAL; JAMES LEBLANC; LYNN COOPER; BLAINE VILLEMARETTE; SCOTT GAUTHIER; STACY BENJAMIN, Defendants-Appellees|
|Judge Panel:||Before JOLLY, GARZA, and STEWART, Circuit Judges.|
|Case Date:||February 21, 2011|
|Court:||United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit|
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana USDC No. 1:09-CV-671.
Leonard Every, Louisiana prisoner # 116913, alleged in a 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action that Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and officers and employees of the Louisiana Department of Corrections conspired to deprive him of his constitutional right to use the mail, and that they committed various acts of nepotism and malfeasance. In the only four claims relevant to this appeal, Every challenges the dismissal of claims concerning three instances of mail censorship related to litigation in state court (Claims One, Two, and Four), and the censorship of a letter to a Louisiana civil service official (Claim Three). All other claims that were raised in the district court, including all claims against Governor Jindal, are waived by Every's failure to brief them here. See Ruiz v. United States, 160 F.3d 273, 275 (5th Cir. 1998).
The district court dismissed the claims both as frivolous and for failing to state a claim under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915 & 1915A and 42 U.S.C. § 1997e. We review its ruling de novo. See Geiger v. Jowers, 404 F.3d 371, 373 (5th Cir. 2005).
A prisoner's right to be free from unlawful interference with his mail, including outgoing legal mail, arises from two distinct rights, the right of access to the courts and the right of free speech, which is "the right to be free from unjustified governmental interference with communication." Brewer v. Wilkinson, 3 F.3d 816, 820-21, 825-26 (5th Cir. 1993). To state a claim that interference with mail denied him access to court, a prisoner must show an actual injury by establishing that he was prevented from raising a nonfrivolous claim concerning his conviction or the conditions of his confinement. Jones v. Greninger, 188 F.3d 322, 325 (5th Cir. 1999); see Lewis v. Casey, 518 U.S. 343, 349-50 (1996). If a prisoner contends that he was prevented from litigating a claim that does not challenge his conviction or the conditions of his confinement, he alleges no injury that would bring his claim within the scope of his right of access...
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