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Kisaka v. University of Southern California USC

United States District Court, C.D. California

May 11, 2017

DOUG KISAKA
v.
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA USC ET AL.

          Present: Honorable BEVERLY REID O'CONNELL, United States District Judge

          CIVIL MINUTES - GENERAL

         Proceedings: (IN CHAMBERS)

         ORDER RE PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO REMAND [14]

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Pending before the Court is Plaintiff Doug Kisaka's[1] (“Plaintiff”) Motion to Remand. (See Dkt. No. 14 (hereinafter, “Mot.”).) After considering the papers filed in support of and in opposition to the instant motion, the Court deems this matter appropriate for resolution without oral argument of counsel. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 78; C.D. Cal. L.R. 7-15. For the following reasons, Plaintiff's Motion to Remand is GRANTED.

         II. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         A. Factual Background

         Plaintiff is a University of Southern California (“USC”) alumnus and Los Angeles, California resident who brings this suit against the University of Southern California and several individuals associated with the University. (See Dkt. No. 13 (hereinafter, “FAC”).) USC is a private university located in Los Angeles, California. (FAC ¶ 14.) Defendants Officer J. Young, Officer C. Jiminez, and Officer Josh Voyda are USC public safety officers. (FAC ¶¶ 15-17.) Defendant Carey Drayton is Chief of USC's Public Safety Department. (FAC ¶ 18.) Defendant Carol Sukow is a senior official in the Student Affairs Department of the USC Viterbi School of Engineering. (FAC ¶ 19.) Defendant Kelly Goulis is the Associate Dean of USC's Viterbi School of Engineering. (FAC ¶ 20.) Defendant Wallis Annenberg is the Chairman of USC's Board of Trustees. (Id.) Defendant Michael Jackson is USC's Vice President of Student Affairs. (FAC ¶ 21.) And, finally, Defendant Jody Shipper is the Executive Director of USC's Office of Equity and Diversity.[2] (FAC ¶ 22.)

         According to Plaintiff, USC's Department of Safety racially discriminated against him. (FAC ¶ 26.) Specifically, Plaintiff alleges that in March 2010, USC public safety officials falsely arrested Plaintiff due to his race, causing him to spend two nights in jail. (See FAC ¶¶ 3, 27, 28, 32.) After he informed the school about this event, “[t]he university neither apologized nor responded.” (FAC ¶ 27.) By the time the Department of Education began to investigate, Plaintiff was no longer listed as an active USC student, which he claims was a result of USC officials “surreptitiously” changing his status from an active student to a “nonstudent” to deprive the Department of Education of jurisdiction. (Id.) The Department of Education eventually dropped the investigation. (Id.) Plaintiff also details several other occurrences at a USC computer lab during which he claims he was racially profiled and singled out. (See FAC ¶¶ 36-40.) In addition, Plaintiff cites other encounters with USC public safety officials and conversations with Defendants Sukow and Goulis. (See FAC ¶¶ 45-46, 48, 52-66.) Plaintiff avers that he is now permanently banned from USC's campus, preventing him from receiving medical treatment from his USC doctors, receiving assistance from USC librarians, and contacting USC's alumni association. (FAC ¶ 70.)

         B. Procedural Background

         In March 2011, Plaintiff filed a complaint in this Court in a matter entitled Doug Kisaka et al. v. University of Southern California et al., No. 2:11-cv-01942-BRO-MAN, making similar allegations. After Plaintiff failed to comply with numerous court orders and deadlines, this Court dismissed his action in April 2014. (See Kisaka, No. 2:11-cv-01942-BRO-MAN, ECF No. 159.) The Court's dismissal was affirmed on appeal on August 26, 2016. (See Kisaka, No. 2:11-cv-01942-BRO-MAN, ECF No. 174.)

         Plaintiff then filed a Complaint in the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles on February 9, 2017. (See Dkt. No. 1-1.) Plaintiff's Complaint alleged eighteen causes of action: (1) race discrimination in violation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; (2) intentional race discrimination in violation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; (3) violation of the Fourteenth Amendment and 42 U.S.C. § 1981; (4) violation of the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments and 42 U.S.C. § 1981; (5) violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1981; (6) conspiracy to violate civil rights in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1986; (7) violation of California Government Code sections 11135 and 11139; (8) violation of Article 1, section 7(a) of the California Constitution; (9) violation of Article 1, section thirteen of the California Constitution; (10) violation of California Civil Code section 52.1(b); (11) intentional infliction of emotional distress; (12) negligent infliction of emotional distress; (13) negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress; (14) negligent employment/supervision; (15) denial of equal educational opportunity in violation of 42 U.S.C. §§ 1981, 1982, 1986, and 2000d; (16) obstruction of justice in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 371, 1503, and 1505; (17) destroying or concealing evidence in violation of California Penal Code section 135; and, (18) violation of California Civil Code section 3294. (See id.) Defendants removed the action to this Court on March 3, 2017, invoking the Court's federal question jurisdiction. (See Dkt. No. 1.)

         Defendants filed a Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint on March 24, 2017. (See Dkt. No. 12.) On April 13, 2017, rather than opposing Defendants' Motion, Plaintiff filed a First Amended Complaint (“FAC”). (See FAC.) Plaintiff's FAC includes only eleven causes of action: (1) violation of California Government Code sections 11135 and 11139; (2) violation of Article 1, section 7(a) of the California Constitution; (3) violation of Article 1, section thirteen of the California Constitution; (4) violation of California Civil Code section 52.1(b); (5) intentional infliction of emotional distress; (6) negligent infliction of emotional distress; (7) negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress; (8) negligent employment/supervision; (9) violation of California Education Code section 66252; (10) destruction of evidence in violation of California Penal Code section 135; and, (11) violation of California Civil Code section 3294. (See FAC.) As Plaintiff no longer brings any federal claims, on April 13, 2017, he filed the instant Motion to Remand, requesting the Court remand the action to the Superior Court. (See Mot.) Defendants opposed Plaintiff's Motion on April 24, 2017.[3] (See Dkt. No. 16 (hereinafter, “Opp'n”).) As of the date of this order, Plaintiff has not filed a reply.[4]

         III. ...


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