The opinion of the court was delivered by: The Honorable David O. Carter, Judge
PRESENT: THE HONORABLE DAVID O. CARTER, JUDGE
Julie Barrera N/A Courtroom Clerk Court Reporter
ATTORNEYS PRESENT FOR PLAINTIFF: ATTORNEYS PRESENT FOR DEFENDANT: None Present None Present
PROCEEDINGS: (IN CHAMBERS): ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART DEFENDANTS' MOTIONS TO DISMISS, DENYING DEFENDANTS' MOTIONS TO STRIKE, AND ORDERING ACTION STAYED PENDING RESOLUTION OF UNDERLYING CRIMINAL CHARGES
Before the Court are four motions: (1) a Motion to Dismiss filed by Defendants IPC International Corporation and Jose Reyes (Dkt. 23); (2) a Motion to Dismiss filed by Defendant Vestar Property Management Company (Dkt. 24); (3) a Motion to Strike Portions of Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint filed by Defendants IPC International Corporation and Jose Reyes (Dkt. 25); and (4) a Motion to Strike Portions of Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint filed by Defendant Vestar Property Management Company (Dkt. 26). After reviewing the motions, opposition, and reply, the Court DENIES IN PART and GRANTS IN PART Defendants' Motions to Dismiss and DENIES Defendants' Motions to Strike.*fn1
The Court also ORDERS this case STAYED pending resolution of the underlying criminal case, Orange County Superior Court case No. 10CM00225.
The gravamen of the First Amended Complaint ("FAC") (Dkt. 21) is that Defendants City of Tustin, Brian Chupp ("Chupp"), Mark Turner ("Turner") and Scott Jordan ("Jordan") (collectively "City Defendants") along with Defendants Jose Reyes ("Reyes"), IPC International Corporation ("IPC") and Vestar Property Management Company ("Vestar") (collectively "Private Party Defendants") acted in concert to falsely arrest and maliciously prosecute Plaintiff Edward Rezek ("Plaintiff") for crimes City Defendants and Private Party Defendants knew he did not commit. The FAC alleges the following facts.
a. Reyes nearly strikes Plaintiff with a patrol vehicle
On October 15, 2009, Plaintiff was in a crosswalk en route to a bar in Tustin, California, when Defendant Reyes-who was employed by Defendants IPC and Vestar- drove his patrol vehicle into the crosswalk nearly striking Plaintiff. FAC at ¶ 8. Reyes stopped the vehicle after Plaintiff "slapped the hood" of the patrol car in order to get Reyes' attention. Id. Plaintiff then "approached Reyes and gave Reyes a lecture about nearly injuring plaintiff." Id.
b. Chupp and Turner, in plain clothes and without identifying themselves, manhandle Plaintiff
A few minutes later Plaintiff was talking on the phone while waiting in line to enter the bar when on-duty police officers Chupp and Turner, in plain clothes and without identifying themselves, "forcibly pulled Plaintiff out of line and hustled Plaintiff to a nearby intersection where Reyes stood at Reyes' vehicle." Id.
Chupp and Turner then yelled to Reyes "is this the asshole that vandalized and punched your car?" to which Reyes falsely responded "yes." Id. Plaintiff attempted to explain to Chupp and Turner what had happened in the crosswalk. Id. Despite Plaintiff's explanation, one of the two officers "maliciously, forcibly and needlessly knocked Plaintiff to the ground, wrenching Plaintiff's right arm high behind his back causing excruciating pain." Id.
c. Chupp and Turner identify themselves only after a third party attempts to intervene
The manager of the bar attempted to pull an officer off of Plaintiff after Plaintiff screamed out for help, but was stopped when one of the two officers identified themselves as police officers. Id. Plaintiff was later diagnosed with a broken arm. Id.
d. Plaintiff's injuries are diagnosed and he is booked
After forcefully apprehending Plaintiff, Plaintiff was handcuffed and placed in a police vehicle that had been brought to the scene by a transporting officer. Id. After receiving a diagnosis and treatment for his arm at Western Medical, Plaintiff was taken to the Tustin Police Department. Id. He was booked for violating California Penal Code section 148(a)(1) (resisting arrest)*fn2 at Chupp and Turner's direction and request, as well as for violating California Penal Code section 594 (vandalism)*fn3 at Reyes' direction and request. Id. Plaintiff was cited after booking and released. Id.
In order to justify Plaintiff's violent seizure, Chupp, Turner and
Reyes decided among themselves to make it seem as though Reyes
directed the transporting officer to carry out Reyes' citizen's arrest
for vandalism. Id. Pursuant to this agreement, Reyes executed the
citizen's arrest and Chupp and Turner authored false crime reports in
which both claimed that they witnessed Plaintiff "punch the hood of
the vehicle" firsthand and that Reyes' vehicle was not in the
crosswalk. Id. Moreover, Reyes furnished false evidence to the
District Attorney and kept certain information regarding Plaintiff's
violent arrest from the Tustin IA investigators and the District
Attorney. Opp'n at 8, 11. On January 11, 2010, the Orange ...