United States District Court, E.D. Washington
JADE WILCOX, on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated, Plaintiffs,
JOHN BASTISTE and JOHN DOES 1-300, Defendants.
ORDER GRANTING PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION
ROSANNA MALOUF PETERSON United States District Judge.
THE COURT is Plaintiff's Motion for a Temporary
Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction, ECF No. 3. On
May 25, 2017, the Court heard oral argument on the motion.
James R. Sweetser and Thomas G. Jarrard appeared on behalf of
Plaintiffs, and Assistant Attorney General Shelley A.
Williams appeared on behalf of Defendants. The Court has
considered the motion and the record and is fully informed.
filed this suit pursuant to the Driver's Privacy
Protection Act (“DPPA”), 18 U.S.C. §
2721-2725, which “regulates the disclosure of personal
information contained in the records of state motor vehicle
departments (DMVs).” Reno v. Condon, 528 U.S.
141, 143 (2000). In relevant part, 18 U.S.C. § 2721
A State department of motor vehicles, and any officer,
employee, or contractor thereof, shall not knowingly disclose
or otherwise make available to any person or entity:
. . . personal information, as defined in 18 U.S.C. 2725(3),
about any individual obtained by the department in connection
with a motor vehicle record, except as provided in subsection
(b) of this section . . . .
DPPA restricts those who work on behalf of the DMV and
protects the information obtained from DMV records, as it
makes it “unlawful for any person knowingly to obtain
or disclose personal information, from a motor vehicle
record, for any use not permitted under section 2721(b) of
this title.” 18 U.S.C. § 2722.
statute then lists fourteen “permissible
purposes” for which the protected information may be
disclosed. See 18 U.S.C. § 2721(b).
automobile accidents in Washington state, the Washington
State Patrol (“WSP”) prepares collision reports
containing personal information of the sort protected by the
DPPA. It was represented at oral argument that the personal
information is obtained from DMV records and uploads into a
software program that the WSP troopers use to compose the
collision reports. Currently, the WSP sells those collision
reports to any third party without redacting various types of
personal information. Plaintiffs seek a TRO and preliminary
(1) enjoining Defendants from disclosing DPPA-protected
“personal information” of Plaintiffs and the
[putative] Class to others without a permissible purpose
and/or (2) ordering redaction of the name, address, driver
license number, date of birth, sex, height, and weight of the
registered owner from all traffic collision reports it
discloses, unless and until a lawful or permissible purpose
standard for issuing a temporary restraining order is the
same as that for the issuance of [a] preliminary
injunction.” Dahlstrom v. Sauk-Suiattle Indian
Tribe of Washington, No. C16-0052JLR, 2017 WL
413201, at *2 (W.D. Wash. Jan. 31, 2017) (citing New
Motor Vehicle Bd. of Cal. v. Orrin W. Fox Co., 434 U.S.
1345, 1347 n.2 (1977)). A preliminary injunction is “an
extraordinary and drastic remedy, one that should not be
granted unless the movant, by a clear
showing, carries the burden of persuasion.”
Lopez v. Brewer, 680 F.3d 1068, 1072 (9th Cir. 2012)
(emphasis in original) (quoting Mazurek v.
Armstrong, 520 U.S. 968, 972 (1997) (per curiam)).
Ordinarily, to obtain a preliminary injunction, the moving
party must “demonstrate that (1) he is likely to
succeed on the merits of such a claim; (2) he is likely to
suffer irreparable harm in the absence of preliminary relief;
(3) the balance of equities tips in his favor; and (4) that
an injunction is in the public interest.”
Lopez, 680 F.3d at 1072 (citing Winter v.
Natural Res. Def. Council, Inc., 555 U.S. 7, 20 (2008)).
conjunction with the four-part post-Winter test, the
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has stated that “serious
questions going to the merits and a balance of hardships that
tips sharply towards the plaintiff can support issuance of a
preliminary injunction, so long as the plaintiff also shows
that there is a likelihood of irreparable injury and that the
injunction is in the public interest.” League of
Wilderness Defs./Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project v.