United States District Court, E.D. Kentucky, Southern Division
OPINION AND ORDER
E. WEIR JUDGE
without an attorney, Mary Joe Bundy Everage accuses several
major television networks of jointly installing
“monitoring cameras and listening devices in [her] home
and auto, ” and “controlling and monitoring [her]
computer, cellphone, and radio.” DE #1 (Complaint) at
3. Without providing details as to the number or placement of
these devices, she avers that “[t]hese methods
culminated in [her] being USED for profit By these television
networks, the morning news of Fox Television, the morning
news on ABC, and The 4th hour of NBC's Today
Show involving Kathie Lee Gifford and Hota Kotb.”
Id. at 7. Everage does not offer a description of
these programs' offending content, but she labels the
networks as “little more than sex offenders and common
criminals” and requests $50 million in damages from
each defendant. Id. at 4, 5. The Court previously
granted Everage's request to proceed in forma
pauperis (IFP) in this matter. DE #6. See 28
U.S.C. § 1915(a)(1).
Everage proceeds IFP, the Court preliminarily screens her
Complaint and concludes that dismissal is appropriate under
§ 1915(e)(2)(B)(i). See Benson v. O'Brien,
179 F.3d 1014, 1016 (6th Cir. 1999) (limiting courts'
screening power under § 1915(e)(2) to actions brought
IFP). “A complaint is frivolous if it has no arguable
basis in law or fact.” Hill v. Michigan, 14
Fed.Appx. 401, 403 (6th Cir. 2001) (citing Neitzke v.
Williams, 109 S.Ct. 1827, 1831-32 (1989)). As used in
§ 1915(e)(2), the “term ‘frivolous,'
when applied to a complaint, embraces not only the inarguable
legal conclusion, but also the fanciful factual
allegation.” Neitzke, 109 S.Ct. at 1832.
Claims are properly deemed frivolous “if the facts
alleged are irrational or wholly incredible, as when they are
fanciful, fantastic or delusional.” Murph v.
Stumbo, 3:05-CV-509-H, 2005 WL 2245466, at *1 (W.D. Ky.
Sept. 14, 2005); accord Denton v. Hernandez, 112
S.Ct. 1728, 1733 (1992) (noting that “a court may
dismiss a claim as factually frivolous only if the facts
alleged are clearly baseless” and encompass allegations
that are “fanciful” and “fantastic[,
]” collectively “ris[ing] to the level of the
irrational or wholly incredible”) (internal quotation
marks and citation omitted). Even under the liberal pleading
construction afforded to pro se litigants, see
Williams v. Curtin, 631 F.3d 380, 383 (6th Cir. 2011),
Everage's claim that multiple national television
networks, with which she admits she has never had any
personal connection or interaction (see DE #1 at 4),
have been secretly monitoring her life and using it in
programming is of this farfetched nature.
the nonspecific factual assertions Everage lodges against the
networks- indiscriminately claiming that “[t]he media
put hidden cameras in [her] home . . . and the Defendants
were involved”-describe a scenario that is fanciful and
fantastic. See DE #1 at 4. Although Everage
blames the networks for a litany of personal afflictions, her
summary allegations lack concrete facts about Defendants'
activities and provide only attenuated theories about alleged
remote interference in her life. See, e.g.,
id. at 7 (“I have changed mobile phone Numbers
four times in the past year, having received 63 calls in a
two week period of time. These networks are responsible
either directly or indirectly by publishing my private
information to the public.”); id. at 8
(“I was USED for material or their television shows and
even the products I brought home from the store were
immediately advertised on their commercials.”).
Notably, Everage provides no dates (except perhaps
“several years” after a relocation from Tennessee
in 1998), places, people, or details. She rails against the
networks but then alleges exploitative conduct by the
“Entertainment world, especially the music world in
Nashville, Tennessee.” DE #1 at 3. With no particulars
on time, act, actor, or location, the Complaint cites a
“hate crime, ” objects over unspecified privacy
invasions, contends illegal wiretapping, and posits the
existence of “two way television” employed by
public broadcasters. Id. at 3, 8. From this
fictional mosaic, Plaintiff endeavors a federal lawsuit; the
Court rejects the effort as far afield and plainly subject to
screening for frivolity. Everage's allegations
“rise to the level of the irrational or wholly
incredible[, ]” and her Complaint is subject to §
1915(e)(2) dismissal. See Denton, 112 S.Ct. at 1733.
Accordingly, the Court ORDERS as follows:
Court DISMISSES Everage's Complaint (DE
#1) in its entirety, with prejudice.
Court STRIKES this matter from its active
Judgment to this effect follows.
 Everage requests $25 million in
compensatory damages and an additional $25 million in
punitive damages “to warn these big shots who exploit
the little people that the United States Constitution was
written for the protection of the ...