United States District Court, N.D. Alabama, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER 
G. CORNELIUS U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE
On July 20, 2017, Joseph Stephen West, proceeding pro
se, filed this action against Jayme Amberson and Wendall
Ward pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (Doc. 1). Defendant
Amberson filed a motion to dismiss on August 16, 2017. (Doc.
4). Defendant Ward filed a motion to dismiss on September 14,
2017. (Doc. 13). Both motions are fully briefed and before
the court for decision. For the reasons stated below,
Amberson's motion to dismiss (Doc. 4) is due to be
granted and Ward's motion to dismiss (Doc. 13) is due to
April 6, 2017, Plaintiff filed a complaint in Calhoun County
Circuit Court against Jayme Amberson, former Assistant
District Attorney for Calhoun County, alleging claims of
malicious prosecution and fraud. (Doc. 5-1). On May 16, 2017,
Amberson filed a motion to dismiss,  arguing she was absolutely
immune from suit pursuant to prosecutorial immunity, and
asked the court to dismiss the complaint with prejudice. On
May 25, 2017, Circuit Judge Bud Turner granted Amberson's
motion to dismiss. (Doc. 5-2). Two months later, on July 20,
2017, Plaintiff filed a complaint in this court. (Doc. 1).
Amberson contends Plaintiff's claims against her are
barred by the doctrine of res judicata. (Docs. 4
& 5). Defendant Ward contends Plaintiff's claims
against him are similarly barred by the doctrine of res
judicata and collateral estoppel. (Docs. 13 & 14).
The court addresses each defendant separately.
[a federal court] consider[s] whether to give res
judicata effect to a state court judgment, we must apply
the res judicata principles of the law of the state
whose decision is set up as a bar to further
litigation.” Muhammad v.Secretary, Florida Dept. of
Corrections, 739 F.3d 683, 688 (11th Cir. 2014)
(internal quotations and citations omitted). In Alabama,
“[t]he doctrine of res judicata bars
subsequent claims involving the ‘identical parties,
facts and subject matter litigated, or those which could have
been litigated, in an earlier lawsuit.'”
Higgins v. Henderson, 551 So.2d 1050, 1052 (Ala.
1989) (quoting Chavers v.National Sec. Fire & Cas.
Co., 456 So.2d 293, 294 (Ala. 1984)). Stated
[t]he traditional res judicata case (frequently
referred to as a claim preclusion) involves prior litigation
between a plaintiff and a defendant, which is decided on the
merits by a court of competent jurisdiction, and then a
subsequent attempt by the prior plaintiff to relitigate the
same cause of action against the same defendant, or perhaps
to relitigate a different claim not previously litigated but
which arises out of the same evidence. Alabama law is well
settled that this will not be allowed. A valid, final
judgment on the merits of the claim extinguishes the claim.
If the plaintiff won, the claim is merged into the judgment;
if the defendant won, the plaintiff is barred from
relitigating any matter which could have been litigated in
the prior action.
Whisman v. Alabama Power Co., 512 So.2d 78, 81 (Ala.
1987) (internal citations omitted).
contends res judicata does not bar the instant
complaint against Amberson because the state court complaint
was not dismissed on the merits. (Doc. 11). The court
disagrees. The law is clear dismissal for failure to state a
claim under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) is a
judgment on the merits. Federated Dep't. Stores, Inc.
v. Moitie, 452 U.S. 394, 399 n.3 (1981). It follows,
therefore, that Alabama Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) is a
judgment on the merits as they both are dismissals for
failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.
state court action, Amberson moved for dismissal for failure
to state a claim based on prosecutorial immunity under
Alabama law and sought dismissal with prejudice. Her motion
argued the allegations contained in the complaint squarely
fell within the scope of her prosecutorial discretion and,
therefore, Plaintiff could prove no set of facts entitling
him to relief. Judge Turner granted the motion to dismiss.
That dismissal was a judgment on the merits.
is no question the remaining elements of the res
judicata test are satisfied. Plaintiff does not dispute
the prior decision was rendered by a court of competent
jurisdiction and the parties were identical in both suits.
Additionally, a review of both complaints shows all causes of
actions against Amberson asserted in this case were also
raised in the complaint in Calhoun County. Accordingly,
Amberson's motion to dismiss is GRANTED.