United States District Court, S.D. California
GAVIN B. DAVIS, Plaintiff,
SAN DIEGO DISTRICT ATTORNEY; MR. LEONARD TRINH; SAN DIEGO POLICE DEPARTMENT; JOHN DOES, Defendants.
ORDER GRANTING MOTIONS TO DISMISS (ECF Nos. 5,
JANIS L. SAMMARTINO UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
before the Court are Defendants San Diego District Attorney
and Leonard Trinh's Motion to Dismiss Complaint for
Failure to Allege a Short, Plain Statement and for Failure to
State a Claim, (“MTD 1, ” ECF No. 5), and
Defendant City of San Diego's Motion to Dismiss
Plaintiff's Complaint, (“MTD 2, ” ECF No. 6).
Also before the Court are Plaintiff Gavin B. Davis's
response in opposition to one of these motions, (“MTD 2
Opp'n, ” ECF No. 7), and Defendant City of San
Diego's reply in support of its motion, (“MTD 2
Reply, ” ECF No. 20). The Court vacated the hearing on
the motions and took them under submission without oral
argument pursuant to Civil Local Rule 7.1(d)(1). (ECF No.
21.) After considering the parties' arguments and the
law, the Court GRANTS Defendants' Motions to Dismiss (ECF
Nos. 5, 6).
complaints must contain a “short and plain statement of
the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to
relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). Detailed factual
allegations are not required, but “[t]hreadbare
recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by
mere conclusory statements, do not suffice.”
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (citing
Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 554, 555
(2007)). “[D]etermining whether a complaint states a
plausible claim is context-specific, requiring the reviewing
court to draw on its experience and common sense.”
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 663-64 (citing Twombly,
550 U.S. at 556).
there are well-pleaded factual allegations, a court should
assume their veracity, and then determine whether they
plausibly give rise to an entitlement of relief.”
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679. “[W]hen determining
whether a complaint states a claim, a court must accept as
true all allegations of material fact and must construe those
facts in the light most favorable to the plaintiff.”
Resnick v. Hayes, 213 F.3d 443, 447 (9th Cir. 2000).
factual allegations are accepted as true, legal conclusions
are not.” Hoagland v. Astrue, No.
1:12-cv-00973-SMS, 2012 WL 2521753, at *3 (E.D. Cal. June 28,
2012) (citing Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678). Courts cannot
accept legal conclusions set forth in a complaint if the
plaintiff has not supported her contentions with facts.
Id. (citing Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679).
Additionally, while the court “ha[s] an obligation
where the petitioner is pro se, particularly in civil rights
cases, to construe the pleadings liberally and to afford the
petitioner the benefit of any doubt, ” Hebbe v.
Pliler, 627 F.3d 338, 342 & n.7 (9th Cir. 2010)
(citing Bretz v. Kelman, 773 F.2d 1026, 1027 n.1
(9th Cir. 1985)), it may not “supply essential elements
of claims that were not initially pled.” Ivey v.
Bd. of Regents of the Univ. of Alaska, 673 F.2d 266, 268
(9th Cir. 1982).
move to dismiss Plaintiff's complaint for failure to meet
the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a).
(See generally MTD 1, MTD 2.) The Court agrees.
March 31, 2017, Plaintiff filed a meandering forty-four-page
Complaint that discusses various wrongs Plaintiff believes he
has suffered. (See Compl., ECF No. 1.) Plaintiff
generally describes two “incidents” which
purportedly give rise to claims for relief against
Defendants. In the first, Plaintiff appears to describe a
restraining order that was enforced against him by his
ex-wife and the San Diego Police Department. (See
Id. at 10- 15.) In the second, Plaintiff discusses his
arrest inside superior court for what appears to be contempt
of court. (See Id. at 15-20.) Then Plaintiff
describes events under the title of “other attempts at
illegal pre-trial detention and custody of the plaintiff,
” (id. at 21-39), which are even more
disjointed and difficult to comprehend than his previous two
“incidents.” After assessing Plaintiff's
Complaint, the Court cannot discern the outlines of any
particular claim for relief and thus agrees with Defendants
that Plaintiff has failed to give them fair notice of the
claims against them. Accordingly, the Court GRANTS
Defendants' Motions to Dismiss. See, e.g.,
Davis v. Unruh, No. 16-56306, 2017 WL 695206, at *1
(9th Cir. Feb. 22, 2017) (affirming the court's dismissal
of this Plaintiff's complaint for failure to
satisfy Rule 8); Cafasso, United States ex rel. v. Gen.
Dynamics C4 Sys., Inc., 637 F.3d 1047, 1058-59 (9th Cir.
2011) (collecting cases upholding Rule 8 dismissals where
pleadings were “verbose, ” “confusing,
” “distracting, ambiguous, and unintelligible,
” “highly repetitious, ” and comprised of
“incomprehensible rambling”); United States
ex rel. Garst v. Lockheed-Martin Corp., 328 F.3d 374,
378 (7th Cir. 2003) (“Rule 8(a) requires parties to
make their pleadings straightforward, so that judges and
adverse parties need not try to fish a gold coin from a
bucket of mud.”).
Court will grant Plaintiff an opportunity to amend his
Complaint to address the deficiencies set forth above and as
outlined by Defendants in their motions. In the amended
complaint, Plaintiff must succinctly specify who did
what, when the events occurred, and how Plaintiff was harmed
by the alleged conduct.
reasons stated above, the Court GRANTS Defendants'
Motions to Dismiss (ECF Nos. 5, 6). Accordingly, the Court
DISMISSES WITHOUT PREJUDICE Plaintiffs Complaint (ECF No. 1).
Plaintiff SHALL FILE an amended complaint, if any, on or
before thirty (30) days of the date on which this order is
electronically docketed. Failure to file an amended complaint
within this time period may result in this case being
dismissed with prejudice.