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Jeremiah v. City of Redmond

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle

February 4, 2014

JAMES J. JEREMIAH, Plaintiff,
v.
CITY OF REDMOND, et al., Defendants.

ORDER

RICHARD A. JONES, District Judge.

I. INTRODUCTION

This matter comes before the court on Defendants' motion for summary judgment. Plaintiff did not oppose the motion. For the reasons stated below, the court GRANTS the motion (Dkt. # 99) and directs the clerk to enter judgment for Defendants.

II. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff James Jeremiah, proceeding without the assistance of an attorney, has sued the City of Redmond, its Mayor, and several of its employees in the wake of an incident in which he reported vandalism of a Redmond residence that he shared with Charles Petri. To summarize his suit, the court attempts to decipher Mr. Jeremiah's 58page complaint. Dkt. # 9. The court does not suggest that any of the factual assertions in the complaint are true, it merely attempts to summarize them to give context to its later analysis.

Mr. Jeremiah alleges that after a dispute over the location of exercise equipment, Mr. Petri physically threatened him. When Mr. Jeremiah demanded that Mr. Petri leave, Mr. Petri allegedly sprayed the residence's electrical outlets with a household cleaner.

Mr. Jeremiah called the police on June 12, 2009. Redmond Police Department ("RPD") Officer Steve Lincoln responded to the call. Mr. Jeremiah is dissatisfied with Officer Lincoln's handling of the call for a variety of reasons. He alleges, among other things, that Officer Lincoln improperly refused to arrest Mr. Petri, that he was dismissive of Mr. Jeremiah's complaints, and that he improperly investigated the vandalism.

In the days that followed, Mr. Jeremiah gave various statements to Officer Lincoln. He also made several appearances at the RPD's offices, where he spoke with Dawn Sellers, an employee in the RPD records department. Mr. Jeremiah was also dissatisfied with Ms. Sellers, who he contends treated him rudely.

Unhappy with RPD's response, Mr. Jeremiah turned to Larry Mitchell, a prosecutor for the City of Redmond. Mr. Jeremiah was dissatisfied with Mr. Mitchell's response as well. Among other things, Mr. Mitchell declined to bring charges against Mr. Petri. That led Mr. Jeremiah to send written complaints about Mr. Mitchell (and perhaps others) to Redmond's Mayor, John Marchione. Mr. Jeremiah's complaints about the conduct of Officer Lincoln, Ms. Sellers, and Mr. Mitchell have continued. He has attempted to convince the City and RPD to investigate his complaints. Again, he has been dissatisfied with their response.

In June 2012, Mr. Jeremiah sued the City, Mayor Marchione, Officer Lincoln, Ms. Sellers, Mr. Mitchell, and Shawn Fitzpatrick. Ms. Fitzpatrick supervises Ms. Sellers. He claims to have stated sixteen causes of action, including racial discrimination in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1981 and 42 U.S.C. § 1983, conspiracy to violate § 1983, a conspiracy in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1985, conspiracy in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1986, violations of the Washington Constitution, violations of various Washington criminal statutes, defamation, violation of the state-created-danger doctrine under the Fourteenth Amendment, and various forms of negligence, including negligent training of Redmond employees. He contends that the City and its policymakers are liable, via § 1983, for policies and practices that caused violations of his constitutional rights, including policies relating to the training of RPD employees. He also claims that Officer Lincoln and Ms. Sellers are liable for negligent infliction of emotional distress and the tort of outrage.

Every Defendant has now moved for summary judgment on all of Mr. Jeremiah's claims.

III. ANALYSIS

On motions for summary judgment, the court must draw all inferences from the admissible evidence in the light most favorable to the non-moving party. Addisu v. Fred Meyer, Inc., 198 F.3d 1130, 1134 (9th Cir. 2000). Summary judgment is appropriate where there is no genuine issue of material fact and the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). The moving party must initially show the absence of a genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). The opposing party must then show a genuine issue of fact for trial. Matsushita Elect. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986). The opposing party must present probative evidence to support its claim or defense. Intel Corp. v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 952 F.2d 1551, 1558 (9th Cir. 1991). The court defers to neither party in resolving purely legal questions. See Bendixen v. Standard Ins. Co., 185 F.3d 939, 942 (9th Cir. 1999).

A. Although There is No Evidence That Mr. Jeremiah Properly Served the Individual Defendants, the Court Declines to ...


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