Green v. Chvala, 063014 FED7, 13-3568

Docket Nº:13-3568
Party Name:STEVEN GREEN, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. STEVEN T. CHVALA, et al., Defendants-Appellees.
Judge Panel:Before DIANE P. WOOD, Chief Judge JOEL M. FLAUM, Circuit Judge DIANE S. SYKES, Circuit Judg.
Case Date:June 30, 2014
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

STEVEN GREEN, Plaintiff-Appellant,


STEVEN T. CHVALA, et al., Defendants-Appellees.

No. 13-3568

United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit

June 30, 2014


Submitted June 27, 2014[*]

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin. No. 12-cv-761-wmc William M. Conley, Chief Judge.

Before DIANE P. WOOD, Chief Judge JOEL M. FLAUM, Circuit Judge DIANE S. SYKES, Circuit Judg.e


Steven Green sued the Dane County Sheriff's Department, the Madison Police Department, and several of their police officers for excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment. See 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The district court concluded that Green's principal claims against Officers Bradley Schroeder and Steven Chvala were barred by Heck v. Humphrey, 512 U.S. 477 (1994). The court relied on his conviction for recklessly endangering safety, Wis.Stat. § 941.30(2), which stemmed from the same course of events underlying his civil suit. We conclude, however, that these claims are compatible with Heck. Thus we vacate in part and remand to the district court.

In this appeal we assume the truth of the facts alleged in Green's complaint, and to the extent they are consistent with the complaint, any elaboration of those facts in his appellate brief. Wigod v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 673 F.3d 547, 555 (7th Cir. 2012); Sanders v. Sheahan, 198 F.3d 626, 626 (7th Cir. 1999). On September 4, 2010, as Green was pulling away from a stop sign, Officer Schroeder's squad car approached Green and activated its lights. Green pulled into a nearby lot, promptly backed out of it, and slowly drove past Schroeder. Schroeder responded by opening fire on Green's car, and bullets shattered the passenger and back windows. Fearing for his life, Green then sped away. Later that day, two officers apprehended Green, now on foot, at gunpoint. While Green was lying motionless and handcuffed on the ground, a third officer, Steven Chvala, came over and "kneed" him in the ribs as the other officers watched. Several months later Green pleaded no contest and was convicted of Wis.Stat. § 941.30(2), for "second degree recklessly endangering safety" for conduct committed on the date of his arrest.

Green brings claims against Schroeder for the shooting, against Chvala for the kneeing, against the other officers for failure to stop the kneeing, and against municipal departments for failure to train officers on proper force. At screening the district court dismissed each of Green's claims for failing to state a claim for relief under § 1983. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. First, the court concluded that Green's excessive-force claim against Schroeder was barred by Heck because Green's allegation that he posed no immediate safety threat (thus making the use of deadly force...

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