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Ryan v. Hyden

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


August 31, 2010

MYKAL S. RYAN, PLAINTIFF,
v.
TIMOTHY M. HYDEN, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Hon. Michael M. Anello United States District Judge

ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT YORK-POQUOSON SHERIFFS' MOTION TO DISMISS [Doc. No. 4]

Before the Court is Defendant York-Poquoson Sheriffs' motion to dismiss Plaintiff Mykal S. Ryan's complaint under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b) for lack of jurisdiction, improper venue, and failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. [Doc. No. 4.] For the following reasons, the Court GRANTS Defendant's motion to dismiss.

BACKGROUND

This action arises from events surrounding Plaintiff's allegedly wrongful arrest for trespassing on real property owned by Plaintiff, located at 104 N. Joshuas Way, Yorktown, Virginia 23692 (the "Property"). [Complaint, ¶27.] According to Plaintiff, Defendant negligently failed to verify records regarding ownership of the Property, wrongfully arrested Plaintiff for trespassing, and thereafter unlawfully searched and damaged the premises. [Id. at ¶¶29-33.]

On April 8, 2010, Plaintiff filed the current action, alleging claims for: (1) False Arrest under 42 U.S.C. § 1983; (2) False Imprisonment under 42 U.S.C. § 1983; (3) Malicious Prosecution under 42 U.S.C. § 1983; (4) Damage to Reputation; and (5) Intentional Infliction of Emotional Injuries and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. [See Complaint.]*fn1 Plaintiff does not assert the fourth and fifth causes of action against Defendant York-Poquoson Sheriffs. In the complaint, Plaintiff asserts venue is proper in the Southern District of California to accommodate his Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, caused by "two consecutive tours of duty in Iraq as an Army soldier," which prevents him from traveling long distances. [Id. at ¶¶11, 17, 19.]

Defendant York-Poquoson Sheriffs moves to dismiss Plaintiff's complaint pursuant to Rule 12(b)(1) for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, (b)(2) for lack of personal jurisdiction, (b)(3) for improper venue, and (b)(6) for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. [Doc. No. 4.] Plaintiff did not file an opposition within the time permitted by Civil Local Rule 7.1(e).

DISCUSSION

The Ninth Circuit has held a district court may properly grant an unopposed motion to dismiss pursuant to a local rule where the local rule permits, but does not require, the granting of a motion for failure to respond. See generally, Ghazali v. Moran, 46 F.3d 52, 53 (9th Cir. 1995). Local Civil Rule 7.1(f)(3)(c) provides that "[i]f an opposing party fails to file papers in the manner required by Local Rule 7.1(e)(2), that failure may constitute a consent to the granting of that motion or other ruling by the court." As such, the Court has the option of granting Defendant's motion on the basis of Plaintiff's failure to respond, and it chooses to do so.

Generally, public policy favors disposition of cases on their merits. See, e.g., Hernandez v. City of El Monte, 138 F.3d 393, 399 (9th Cir. 1998). However, a case cannot move forward toward resolution on the merits when the plaintiff fails to defend his case against a Rule 12(b)(3) motion. Thus, this policy lends little support to a party whose responsibility it is to move a case toward disposition on the merits but whose conduct impedes or completely prevents progress in that direction. See In re Eisen, 31 F.3d 1447, 1454 (9th Cir. 1994). In addition, management of this Court's docket is of vital significance to the proper and timely resolution of matters before it. Consequently, the Court finds dismissal pursuant to Local Civil Rule 7.1(f)(3)(c) serves to facilitate the management of its docket in light of the fact that the complaint, on its face, demonstrates no plausible ground for jurisdiction over this out-of-state Defendant, nor venue in the Southern District of California.

CONCLUSION

For the reasons set forth above, the Court GRANTS Defendant's motion to dismiss. Plaintiff's claims are DISMISSED as to Defendant York-Poquoson Sheriffs.

IT IS SO ORDERED.


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