326 F.2d 119 (6th Cir. 1964), 15174, Crawford v. Zeitler

Docket Nº15174.
Citation326 F.2d 119
Party NameRobert William CRAWFORD, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. Lt. Woodrow W. ZEITLER and the Toledo, Ohio, Police Dept., Defendants-Appellees.
Case DateJanuary 09, 1964
CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

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326 F.2d 119 (6th Cir. 1964)

Robert William CRAWFORD, Plaintiff-Appellant,


Lt. Woodrow W. ZEITLER and the Toledo, Ohio, Police Dept., Defendants-Appellees.

No. 15174.

United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit.

January 9, 1964

Page 120

Robert W. Crawford, in pro. per.

John J. Burkhart, Asst. Director of Law, Toledo, Ohio, for appellees.

Before MILLER and O'SULLIVAN, Circuit Judges, and TAYLOR, District judge.

O'SULLIVAN, Circuit Judge.

This is an appeal from the dismissal of Robert William Crawford's complaint which charged violation of Crawford's civil rights by defendant, Woodrow W. Zeitler, a police lieutenant of Toledo, Ohio, and by defendant, the Toledo, Ohio, Police Department. The dismissal was entered upon motion therefor. The action was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, Western Division.

Plaintiff is an inmate of one of the state prisons of Michigan, serving a 15 to 25 year sentence resulting from his conviction by a jury in the Circuit Court of Kalamazoo County, Michigan, of the crime of robbery armed. The alleged violation of plaintiff's civil rights is based on conduct of Lieutenant Zeitler and the Toledo Police Department. The Toledo officers assisted Michigan police in the apprehension of plaintiff at Toledo and his return, upon plaintiff's waiver of extradition, to Michigan to stand trial for the offense of which he was there convicted. Crawford's arrest and return to Michigan occurred in the month of April, 1957, and the suit before us was commenced on August 8, 1962.

The papers which make up plaintiff's complaint, although inexpertly drawn, may be fairly read as charging that plaintiff was falsely arrested, illegally detained, his person and automobile illegally searched, and the fruit of such search, incriminating evidence, illegally seized. Jurisdiction of the District Court is invoked and plaintiff's cause of action bottomed upon the following sections of the United States Code: §§ 1331, 1332 and 1343 of Title 28 and §§ 1982, 1983 and 1985 of Title 42. Plaintiff also relies on the Fourth, Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

A more complete background to this litigation can be found in the opinion of District Judge Raymond W. Starr in the case of Crawford v. Lydick, 179 F.Supp. 211 (W.D.Mich. 1959), affirmed 280 F.2d 426 (CA 6, 1960), cert. denied 364 U.S. 849, 81 S.Ct. 93, 5 L.Ed.2d 72. In that case, plaintiff charged that his civil rights had been invaded by both Michigan and Ohio police officers. The conduct complained of is the same apprehension and transportation of plaintiff from Ohio to Michigan as is described in the complaint before us. Judge Starr dismissed the action.

Upon the filing of the complaint here involved, the named defendants moved to

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dismiss it on the grounds, inter alia, that the Toledo, Ohio, Police Department did not exist as a suable entity, that plaintiff's cause of action, to...

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