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Jacks v. City of Hayward

United States District Court, N.D. California

July 22, 2016

JABALI JACKS, Plaintiff,
v.
CITY OF HAYWARD, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER DENYING DEFENDANTS’ MOTION TO DISMISS DOCKET NO. 14

          EDWARD M. CHEN United States District Judge

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff Jabali Jacks filed the instant suit, alleging that Defendant City of Hayward police officers used unwarranted and excessive force against him while arresting him, resulting in physical pain and injury. Docket No. 1 (Compl.). The City of Hayward, Officer Tran, and Officer Javier (collectively, the City) now move to dismiss Jacks's state law claims with prejudice, for failure to comply with California's Government Claim Act. Docket No. 14 (Mot.).

         Having reviewed the filings and supplemental briefing, the Court DENIES the City's motion to dismiss.[1]

         II. BACKGROUND

         On April 27, 2014, Jacks alleges that he heard a disturbance occurring outside of his place of employment, and saw a motorcycle being pulled over. Compl. at ¶ 10. Jacks began recording the incident when Officer Faria instructed him to cross the street and come to the officers. Id. at ¶ 11. The officer indicated Jacks that he was going to be ticketed for smoking in public. Id. As Jacks complied with the officer's order, he continued recording the incident. Id. Once he came into reach, Officer James slapped Jacks's phone from his hand and attempted to put him in a carotid restraint. Id. at ¶ 12. Jacks was slammed to the ground, his right arm twisted back, and his head slammed into the concrete. Id. at ¶¶ 13-14. After Jacks's hands and ankles were cuffed, the officers searched Jacks's backpack and found a gun inside. Id. at ¶ 15.

         On April 28, 2014, a criminal complaint charging Jacks with one count of carrying a loaded firearm and one count of resisting arrest was filed with the Alameda County Superior Court. See Docket No. 31 (Yoon Dec.), Exh. A. In the meantime, Jacks filed a governmental claim with the City of Hayward on October 20, 2014. See Docket No. 15 (Mot. RJN), Exh. 2. The City of Hayward rejected the claim on December 3, 2014. Mot. at 3; Opp. at 2.[2]

         On February 24, 2016, the criminal charges against Jacks were dropped. Opp. at 2. Jacks then filed the instant suit on April 27, 2016, bringing claims for: (1) 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claim for illegal detention in violation of the Fourth Amendment; (2) 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claim for wrongful arrest in violation of the Fourth Amendment; (3) 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claim for excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment; (4) 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claim for freedom of speech in violation of the First Amendment; (5) 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claim for freedom of assembly in violation of the First Amendment; (6) Monell claim; (7) negligence; (8) violation of California Civil Code § 52.1 (right to enjoy civil rights); (9) violation of California Civil Code § 51.7 (violation of statutory rights); (10) intentional infliction of emotional distress; and (11) assault and battery. Compl. at 5-11.

         III. DISCUSSION

         A. Standard of Review Defendants move for a dismissal pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). Rule 12(b)(6) allows for dismissal based on a failure to state a claim for relief. A motion to dismiss based on this rule essentially challenges the legal sufficiency of the claims alleged. See Parks Sch. of Bus. v. Symington, 51 F.3d 1480, 1484 (9th Cir. 1995). In considering a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, a court must take all allegations of material fact as true and construe them in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party, although “conclusory allegations of law and unwarranted inferences are insufficient to avoid a Rule 12(b)(6) dismissal.” Cousins v. Lockyer, 568 F.3d 1063, 1067 (9th Cir. 2009). While “a complaint need not contain detailed factual allegations . . . it must plead „enough facts to state a claim of relief that is plausible on its face.'” Weber v. Dep’t of Veterans Affairs, 521 F.3d 1061, 1065 (9th Cir. 2008) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). “A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009); see also Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556. However, “[t]he plausibility standard is not akin to a „probability requirement, ' but it asks for more than sheer possibility that a defendant acted unlawfully.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678.

         B. Analysis

         The City of Hayward seeks to dismiss the seventh through eleventh causes of action (collectively, state claims) for failure to comply with the California Governmental Claims Act. Mot. at 4. The Governmental Claims Act states in relevant part:

(a) Except as provided in Sections 946.4 and 946.6 and subject to subdivision (b), any suit brought against a public entity on a cause of action for which a claim is required to be presented in accordance with Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 900) and Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 910) of Part 3 of this division must be commenced:
(1) If written notice is given in accordance with Section 913, [3] not later than six months after the date such notice is personally ...

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