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Manzo v. County of San Diego

March 3, 2009

ESTATE OF JESUS MANZO, ET AL., PLAINTIFF,
v.
COUNTY OF SAN DIEGO, ET AL., DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Barry Ted Moskowitz United States District Judge

ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO STRIKE AND DISMISS

On November 3, 2008, Defendants in this case filed a Motion to Strike and Dismiss Plaintiffs' Second Amended Complaint. For the reasons explained below, the Court GRANTS in part and DENIES in part Defendants' Motion to Strike and Dismiss.

I. BACKGROUND

On August 1, 2005, San Diego Sheriff's Deputy Lewis Schott ("Schott") shot and killed Jesus Manzo ("Manzo") at his home in Vista, California. (Second Am. Compl. ("SAC") 5.)

On January 12, 2006, Plaintiffs filed their initial Complaint in this matter. The original Complaint [Docket No. 1] named as Plaintiffs: (1) Anahi Manzo, decedent Manzo's daughter; (2) Maria Maldinado, decedent Manzo's mother; and (3) the Estate of Jesus Manzo through its alleged personal representative Maria Nancy Manzo, decedent Manzo's sister ("Estate through Maria Manzo"). (Compl. ¶¶ 8--10.) The Complaint named as Defendants: (1) Schott; (2) Captain Rob Ahern, the Sheriff's Deputy in charge of the Vista patrol; (3) the County of San Diego; and (4) Does 1--100, inclusive.

The Complaint stated eight causes of action: (1) a right of association claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 ("Section 1983") by Anahi Manzo and Maria Maldinado against all Defendants; (2) a wrongful death claim under Section 1983 by Anahi Manzo and Maria Maldinado against all Defendants; (3) an excessive force claim under Section 1983 by the Estate through Maria Manzo; (4) a state law wrongful death claim under Cal. Civ. Pro. Code § 377.6 by Anahi Manzo and Maria Maldinado against all Defendants; (5) a battery claim by the Estate through Maria Manzo against all Defendants; (6) a "failure to properly train, supervise, and discipline" claim under Section 1983 by all Plaintiffs against Defendants Rob Ahern and the County of San Diego; (7) an intentional infliction of emotional distress claim by all Plaintiffs against all Defendants; and (8) a negligence claim by all Plaintiffs against all Defendants.

On January 31, 2006, Defendants filed a motion to dismiss Plaintiffs' Complaint [Docket 4--5]. On May 19, 2006, Judge Rhoades ordered Plaintiffs to file an amended complaint that omitted causes of action that did not state a claim [Docket No.11].

On June 16, 2006, Plaintiffs responded by filing their First Amended Complaint ("FAC") [Docket No. 12]. The FAC named Plaintiffs and Defendants identical to those named in the original Complaint. However, Plaintiffs alleged slightly different claims. The FAC stated the following causes of action: (1) a Section 1983 right of association claim by Anahi Manzo and Maria Maldinado against Schott and Does 1--100; (2) a Section 1983 wrongful death claim by Anahi Manzo and Maria Maldinado against Schott and Does 1--100; (3) a Section 1983 excessive force claim by the Estate through Maria Manzo against Schott and Does 1--100; (4) a Section 1983 Monell Liability claim by all Plaintiffs against the County of San Diego; (5) a Section 1983 supervisory liability claim by all Plaintiffs against Rob Ahern; (6) a state law wrongful death claim under Cal. Civ. Pro. Code § 377.60 by Anahi Manzo against Schott; (7) a battery claim by the Estate through Maria Manzo against Schott; and (8) a negligence claim by the Estate through Maria Manzo against Schott.

On July 14, 2006, Defendants filed a motion to dismiss or strike Plaintiffs' FAC [Docket No. 13--14]. On November 14, 2006, Judge Rhoades ruled on Defendants' motion, striking Plaintiffs' Section 1983 wrongful death claim (second cause of action) from the FAC as duplicative of their Section 1983 right of association claim (first cause of action). Judge Rhoades also clarified that Plaintiffs' state law wrongful death claim was brought solely against Defendant Schott.

On September 11, 2007, the case was reassigned to this Court. On November 26, 2007, Defendants moved for summary judgment [Docket No. 53]. On September 3, 2008, the Court granted in part and denied in part Defendants' motion for summary judgment [Docket No. 73]. First, the Court denied Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Plaintiffs' state law wrongful death claim (sixth cause of action)*fn1 and Section 1983 right of association claim (first cause of action). Second, the Court granted Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Plaintiffs' Monell liability claim (fourth cause of action) and supervisory liability claim (fifth cause of action). The Court also ordered Plaintiffs to show cause why the remaining claims by the Estate through Maria Manzo (third, seventh, and eighth causes of action) should not be dismissed for a lack of standing.

On September 29, 2008, the Court, finding that Maria Manzo lacked standing to bring claims on behalf of the Estate of Jesus Manzo, granted Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Plaintiffs' excessive force (third cause of action), battery (seventh cause of action), and negligence (eighth cause of action) claims [Docket No. 79]. The Court dismissed these claims and Maria Maldinado without prejudice. The Court allowed for the proper party to proceed with the Estate of Manzo's claims to amend the FAC.

On October 24, 2008, Plaintiffs filed their Second Amended Complaint ("SAC") [Docket No. 80]. The SAC stated the same eight causes of action as the FAC. In the SAC, however, Anahi Manzo, by and through her guardian ad litem Guadalupe Valencia, alleged the Estate's survivor claims. Maria Manzo was no longer a party to the action. Plaintiffs filed a motion to appoint Guadalupe Valencia as guardian ad litem for Anahi Manzo on the same day.

On November 3, 2008, Defendants filed the instant Motion Strike and ...


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