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Helene Szajer; Zoltan Szajer v. City of Los Angeles

February 11, 2011

HELENE SZAJER; ZOLTAN SZAJER, PLAINTIFFS-APPELLANTS,
v.
CITY OF LOS ANGELES; LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT; LOS ANGELES CHIEF OF POLICE WILLIAM
BRATTON; LOS ANGELES POLICE DETECTIVE MICHAEL MERSEREAU; LOS ANGELES POLICE DETECTIVE R. TOMPKINS; LOS ANGELES POLICE DETECTIVE YADON; LOS ANGELES POLICE DETECTIVE CONRADO, DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.



D.C. No. No. 08-57010 Appeal from the United States District Court for the Central District of California Stephen V. Wilson, District Judge, Presiding

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge Zouhary

FOR PUBLICATION

OPINION

Argued and Submitted November 3, 2010-Pasadena, California

Before: Alfred T. Goodwin and Johnnie B. Rawlinson, Circuit Judges, and Jack Zouhary, District Judge.*

Opinion by

*The Honorable Jack Zouhary, United States District Judge for the Northern District of Ohio, sitting by designation.

COUNSEL

OPINION

ZOUHARY, District Judge:

This is a civil rights action filed by Helene and Zoltan Szajer (collectively, "Szajers"), owners and operators of the "L.A. Guns" gun shop in West Hollywood, against the City of Los Angeles ("City"), the Los Angeles Police Department ("LAPD"), and a number of individual LAPD officers (collectively "Appellees"). Following a "sting" operation wherein the Szajers purchased illegal firearms from the LAPD, officers searched the Szajers' gun shop and their personal residence, pursuant to a warrant obtained by LAPD Detective Michael Mersereau. The searches resulted in the discovery of illegal firearms and ammunition in both the gun shop and residence. The Szajers did not contest the validity of the warrant or seek to suppress the evidence obtained during the searches. As part of a plea agreement, the Szajers pled no contest to one count of possession of an illegal assault weapon found in their home.

The Szajers then filed this civil action, alleging that the LAPD executed an illegal search at the gun shop. Defendants filed a motion for summary judgment, which the district court granted and the Szajers now appeal. For the reasons set forth below, we affirm the district court's decision granting summary judgment.

BACKGROUND

The Gun ...


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