The Fifth Circuit has dismissed an inmate's appeal against a district court's ruling that his complaint against the warden, Dawn Grounds, and others in charge of the prison in which he is incarcerated is without merit. Apparently Courtney Royal, self-described "Vampsh Black Sheep League of Doom Gardamun Family Circle Master Vampire High Priest," believes that he cannot practice his religious (vampire) rituals in jail as constitutionally protected under the First Amendment. At least, that's what I, and Robyn Kagan of Findlaw, get out of his filing.
Says the court, in part:
Royal asserts, without further explanation, that he intends to raise on appeal issues involving summary judgment; religious items, food diets, and service; spirit advisor; black Bible; and "rugs, rode, [and] beads." He does not address the district court's certification that his appeal was not taken in good faith, nor does he address any of the district court's reasons for its certification decision. ... Accordingly, his challenge to the district court's certification decision is deemed abandoned.
The court furthers warns Mr. Royal that three attempts to file this kind of action constitutes a waste of a court's time. "Royal is cautioned that if he accumulates three strikes under [Sec]1915(g) he will not be able to proceed IFP in any civil action or appeal filed while he is incarcerated or detained in any facility unless he is under imminent danger of serious physical injury." The case is Royal v. Grounds et al., 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 11478.
So, no Grounds for appeal. (One of the other named defendants goes by the name of Pierce, but I'll skip the obvious pun that comes to mind). Does all this mean Mr. Royal failed to stake a claim?
Phil Lord and Chris Miller ("21 Jump Street") are trying to bring "Carter Beats the Devil" to the big screen. Tom Cruise was interested in this project some time ago, but his option apparently lapsed and so did the film. Now, still snoozing at Warner Brothers, the movie project has caught the attention of Mr. Lord and Mr. Miller, whose film "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs" was a huge success in 2009. More here from the Hollywood Reporter.