United States District Court, E.D. California
MICHAEL C. SCHOOL, Plaintiffs,
BICE, et al., Defendants.
CAROLYN K. DELANEY, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
February 14, 2018, the undersigned held a hearing on
defendants' amended motion to dismiss this action
pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6). (ECF No. 10.) Plaintiff opposed
the motion (ECF No. 17), and defendants filed a reply (ECF
No. 20). Nicole Roman appeared for defendants, and plaintiff
appeared pro se. At the close of the hearing, the court took
the matter under submission.
a Grass Valley resident, is proceeding pro se and has paid
the filing fee. This action proceeds on the original
complaint filed October 17, 2017. (ECF No. 1,
complaint names as defendants four California Highway Patrol
officers: Officer Bice, Officer Morrison, Sergeant Nevins,
and Commander Steffenson. It purports to bring both
Bivens and § 1983 claims against defendants.
Plaintiff alleges that on May 30, 2017 at 9:15 a.m., he was
driving his car near an auto parts parking lot when
“Officer Bice profiled me, then detained and arrested
me when there was no breach of the peace.” (Compl. at
5.) “Officer Bice stated he was taking me to the
courthouse to see the magistrate but instead took me
to county jail.” (Id. at 6.) Plaintiff
characterizes this as a false arrest in which he was denied
his federal due process rights, among other rights.
(Id. at 4.)
I was bruised by the handcuffs and forced to sit in an
uncomfortable position unable to move my arms. I was placed
under moral duress when Sgt. Nevins placed his had on his
weapon making angry veiled threats to me in front of a
witness. I have suffered financially due to my kidnapping and
the ransoming of my automobile, and multiple court dates.
(Id. at 6.) Plaintiff was never given a copy of the
ticket until his third arraignment in September.
(Id. at 8.) Plaintiff sues defendants in their
individual and official capacities and seeks $1 million in
damages. (Id. at 4, 6.)
order to survive dismissal for failure to state a claim
pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6), a complaint must contain more than
a “formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of
action”; it must contain factual allegations sufficient
to “raise a right to relief above the speculative
level.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550
U.S. 544 (2007). “The pleading must contain something
more . . . than . . . a statement of facts that merely
creates a suspicion [of] a legally cognizable right of
action.” Id., quoting 5 C. Wright & A.
Miller, Federal Practice and Procedure § 1216, pp.
235-236 (3d ed. 2004).
argue that the complaint fails to state a claim under this
standard. First, as the Eleventh Amendment prohibits damage
actions against state officials in their official capacities,
Stivers v. Pierce, 71 F.3d 732, 749 (9th Cir. 1995),
plaintiff's official capacity claims must be dismissed.
Second, as defendants are not federal officials,
plaintiff's Bivens claims must be
dismissed. Third, as the complaint fails to allege
any facts showing the involvement of defendants Morrison or
Steffenson, these defendants must be dismissed. Moreover,
insofar as plaintiff's claims are based on alleged state
law violations, they are not actionable under § 1983.
Cornejo v. County of San Diego, 504 F.3d 853, 855 n.
3 (9th Cir. 2007) (“[A] claim for violation of state
law is not cognizable under § 1983.”)
the § 1983 claims against Bice and Nevins, plaintiff
‘s allegations do not show that these defendants
committed any constitutional violation. The Civil Rights Act
Every person who, under color of [state law] ... subjects, or
causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States ...
to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities
secured by the Constitution ... shall be liable to the party
injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper
proceeding for redress.
42 U.S.C. § 1983. To state a § 1983 claim, a
plaintiff must allege facts showing each named defendant
either exhibited some sort of “direct personal
participation in the deprivation” or “set[ ] in
motion a series of acts by others which the actor [knew] or
reasonably should [have known] would cause others to inflict
the constitutional injury.” Johnson v. Duffy,
588 F.2d 740, 743-744 (9th Cir. 1978). There must be an
actual causal link between the actions of the named
defendants and the alleged constitutional deprivation.
See Monell, 436 U.S. ...