CB v. SONORA SCHOOL DIST., No. CV-F-09-285 OWW/DLB.

CourtUnited States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Eastern District of California
Writing for the CourtOLIVER W. WANGER
Citation691 F. Supp.2d 1123
PartiesC.B., a minor, Plaintiff, v. SONORA SCHOOL DISTRICT, et al., Defendants.
Docket NumberNo. CV-F-09-285 OWW/DLB.
Decision Date22 September 2009

691 F. Supp.2d 1123

C.B., a minor, Plaintiff,
v.
SONORA SCHOOL DISTRICT, et al., Defendants.

No. CV-F-09-285 OWW/DLB.

United States District Court, E.D. California.

September 22, 2009.


691 F. Supp.2d 1125

John F. Martin, Christine Ann Hopkins, Heather Lyn Holbrooks-Kuratek, Law Offices of John F. Martin, PC, Walnut Creek, CA, for Plaintiff.

Jason M. Sherman, Alesa M. Schachter, Johnson Schachter & Lewis, Sacramento, CA, Cornelius John Callahan, Borton Petrini, LLP, Modesto, CA, for Defendants.

MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER GRANTING IN PART WITH LEAVE TO AMEND, GRANTING PART WITHOUT LEAVE TO AMEND, AND DENYING IN PART DEFENDANTS' MOTIONS TO DISMISS (Docs. 8 & 15) AND GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO STRIKE (Doc. 12)

OLIVER W. WANGER, District Judge.

Plaintiff C.B., a minor, has filed a Complaint against Defendants Sonora School District; Karen Sinclair; City of Sonora; Chief of Police Mace McIntosh; Officer Hal Prock; and Does 1-10. As facts common

691 F. Supp.2d 1126
to all causes of action, the Complaint alleges
9) In the 2007-2008 school year, minor C.B. was enrolled as a 6th grade student at Sonora Elementary School in the Sonora School District.
10) C.B. suffers from disabilities, namely a mood disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, which qualify him for the protections of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and California's Unruh Civil Rights Act. At all times relevant to the Complaint, Sonora School District knew of C.B.'s disabilities and had in fact placed C.B. on an individualized Education Plan and section 504 plan.
11) C.B.'s IEP and section 504 plans at Sonora Elementary School included specific behavioral interventions to be followed in the event C.B. `shut down' or became unresponsive to school staff due to his mood disorder. Interventions included allowing C.B. to go to designated `safe zones,' redirecting C.B. to a leadership or other task, and, if all else failed, contacting C.B.'s parents or other relatives or friends designated by C.B.'s parents. Sonora School District and Sinclair knew at all times relevant to the complaint that C.B.'s behavior of `shutting down' was and is a symptom of his disabilities.
12) On or about September 29, 2008, C.B. allegedly experienced episodes in which he `shut down' and became unresponsive to school staff. The staff at Sonora Elementary School failed to follow C.B.'s IEP and section 504 plan for behavioral intervention and failed to contact C.B.'s parents or designated relatives or friends to assist C.B.
13) Due to C.B.'s disabilities and despite the plans put in place to accommodate those disabilities, Karen Sinclair, a specialist employed by Sonora Elementary School, threatened C.B. that if he did not do as she instructed, she would call the police. Sinclair did in fact instruct a school receptionist to call the City of Sonora Police Department for intervention with an out of control juvenile.
14) On or about September 29, 2008, Chief of Police Mace McIntosh, Officer Hall Prock, and Officer Bowly responded to Sonora Elementary School to respond to the report of the `out of control' juvenile who was allegedly causing a disturbance at the school.
15) Upon locating C.B. on the school grounds, the police encountered C.B., an eleven year old student, who was not acting in any disruptive or disruly manner but rather sitting quietly on a bench with his head down.
16) Despite the fact that C.B. posed no threat to anyone and despite the fact there was no probable cause to take C.B. into custody, Chief of Police Mace McIntosh directed Officer Hal Prock to handcuff C.B. The police took C.B. into custody, placing him handcuffed in a police car, and drove C.B. to Jamestown, California, leaving C.B. in the custody of his uncle Mark Banks.
17) Sinclair and the Sonora Elementary School staff at all times had Mark Banks' contact information as well as the contact information of C.B. and other friends and relatives of C.B., yet at no time did Sinclair or any staff at Sonora Elementary School contact these individuals to assist with C.B. as dictated by common sense as well as C.B.'s IEP and section 504 plans. Instead, Sinclair and Sonora School District treated C.B. harshly and disproportionately, like a criminal, despite the fact he had done nothing wrong and had simply displayed symptoms of a disability which was known to Defendants.
18) At no time did the referenced City of Sonora employees have the permission
691 F. Supp.2d 1127
of C.B. nor his parents to transport C.B. or to cause C.B. to be transported by anyone other than C.B.'s parents and emergency contacts.
19) Sonora School District and the City of Sonora Police Department, in committing the above acts, caused extreme emotional distress to Plaintiff including a regression in progress previously made in treating Plaintiff's mood disorder and ADHD. Plaintiff was forced to dis-enroll from Sonora Elementary School due to the trauma caused by Defendants' excessive and harsh treatment. Defendants' actions violated Plaintiff's civil rights.

The Complaint alleges that Plaintiff filed California Tort Claims with the Sonora School District and the City of Sonora and that both claims were rejected. The Complaint alleges the following causes of action:

1. First Cause of Action against Sonora School District for violation of Section 51(b), 51.5(a), and 54 of the Unruh Civil Rights Act "by discriminating against Plaintiff on account of his disability and by causing Plaintiff to be forcibly removed from Sonora Elementary School on account of his disability;
2. Second Cause of Action for false imprisonment against Defendants McIntosh, Prock, and City of Sonora;
3. Third Cause of Action for battery against Defendants McIntosh, Prock, and City of Sonora;
4. Fourth Cause of Action for intentional infliction of emotional distress against all Defendants;
5. Fifth Cause of Action for violation of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act against Defendant Sonora School District by discriminating against C.B. "on the basis of his disability ... by threatening C.B. with police involvement and by in fact causing such police intervention solely due to C.B.'s disabilities;
6. Sixth Cause of Action for violation of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act against Defendant Sonora School District by discriminating against C.B. "on the basis of his disability ... by threatening C.B. with police involvement and by in fact causing such police intervention solely due to C.B.'s disabilities;
7. Seventh Cause of Action against Defendant Sinclair in her individual capacity for violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1983;
8. Eighth Cause of Action for excessive force in violation of Section 1983 against Defendants McIntosh and Prock in their individual capacities;
9. Ninth Cause of Action for Monell liability against Defendant City of Sonora.

The Complaint prays for compensatory, incidental, general and special, and punitive damages, for civil penalties, and attorneys' fees.

Defendants Sonora School District and Karen Sinclair (collectively District Defendants) move to dismiss the Complaint pursuant to Rules 12(b)(1) and 12(b)(6) on the grounds that (1) the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over Plaintiff's federal claims because Plaintiff has failed to exhaust administrative remedies; (2) Plaintiff's state law claims are barred by Plaintiff's failure to exhaust administrative remedies pursuant to the California Code of Regulations; (3) federal law precludes Plaintiff's tort claim against the District Defendants; (4) Plaintiff's tort claim is barred by California Government Code § 820.2; (5) the Complaint fails to plead facts stating any claim for relief; (6) the Complaint fails to plead facts establishing a prima facie case under the Unruh Civil Rights Act; (7) Plaintiff must elect one remedy under either California Civil Code §§ 52 or 54.3; (8) the Complaint fails to plead facts establishing intentional discrimination;

691 F. Supp.2d 1128
(9) the Complaint fails to plead facts establishing a prima facie claim of intentional infliction of emotional distress; (10) the Complaint fails to plead facts establishing prima facie claims of violation of § 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, or 42 U.S.C. § 1983; and (11) Defendant Sinclair is entitled to qualified immunity from liability. Alternatively, the District Defendants move for a more definite statement

The District Defendants also move pursuant to Rule 12(f) to strike the punitive damages allegations and prayer for punitive damages.

Defendants City of Sonora, Chief of Police Mace McIntosh, and Officer Hal Prock (collectively the City Defendants) move to dismiss the Complaint pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted and on the ground of qualified immunity from liability. Alternatively, the City Defendants move for a more definite statement.

A. GOVERNING STANDARDS.

1. Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction.

In the context of IDEA cases, the Ninth Circuit recognizes the requirement of exhaustion of administrative remedies as jurisdictional in nature. See Robb v. Bethel Sch. Dist. # 403, 308 F.3d 1047 (9th Cir. 2002), Dreher v. Amphitheater Unif. Sch. Dist., 22 F.3d 228, 231 (9th Cir.1994).

Federal subject matter jurisdiction must exist at the time an action is commenced. See Morongo Band of Mission Indians v. California State Board of Equalization, 858 F.2d 1376, 1380 (9th Cir.1988), cert. denied, 488 U.S. 1006, 109 S.Ct. 787, 102 L.Ed.2d 779 (1989). Dismissal is appropriate when the district court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over a claim. Rule 12(b)(1), Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Since subject matter jurisdiction is a threshold issue which goes to the power of the court to hear a case, a Rule 12(b)(1) challenge should be decided before...

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61 practice notes
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    ...of public record were filed or recorded. Lee v. City of L.A., 250 F.3d 668, 688-89 (9th Cir. 2001) ; C.B. v. Sonora Sch. Dist., 691 F. Supp.2d 1123, 1138 (E.D. Cal. 2009) ("The Court may take judicial notice of matters of public record, including duly recorded documents, and court records a......
  • Miksis ex rel. Miksis v. Evanston Twp. High Sch. Dist. # 202, No. 12 C 8497
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    ...the IDEA. It is, rather, a request for enforcement of the stipulated order entered in Fortes–Cortes I. "); C.B. v. Sonora Sch. Dist., 691 F.Supp.2d 1123, 1147 (E.D. Cal. 2009) ("There is no question that the IDEA's exhaustion requirements are limited to claims for violations of federal righ......
  • CB v. SONORA SCHOOL DIST., No. CV-F-09-285 OWW/DLB.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Eastern District of California
    • 8 Marzo 2010
    ...("FAC") and for a more definite statement.1 Plaintiff filed the FAC pursuant to the Memorandum Decision filed on September 22, 2009, 691 F.Supp.2d 1123 (E.D.Cal. 2009) ("September 22 Memorandum Decision"). As "Facts Common to All Causes of Action," the FAC 9) In the 2007-2208 school year, m......
  • Wormuth v. Lammersville Union Sch. Dist., No. 2:15–cv–01572–KJM–EFB
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Eastern District of California
    • 22 Enero 2018
    ...all disciplinary decisions, see, e.g. , Corales v. Bennett , 488 F.Supp.2d 975, 990 (C.D. Cal. 2007) ; C.B. v. Sonora Sch. Dist ., 691 F.Supp.2d 1123, 1152 (E.D. Cal. 2009).Here, Principal Yeager has not engaged in this detailed analysis, arguing instead for blanket discretionary immunity. ......
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61 cases
  • King v. Export Dev. Can. (In re Zetta Jet USA, Inc.), Case No.: 2:17-bk-21386-SK
    • United States
    • United States Bankruptcy Courts. Ninth Circuit. U.S. Bankruptcy Court — Central District of California
    • 29 Julio 2020
    ...of public record were filed or recorded. Lee v. City of L.A., 250 F.3d 668, 688-89 (9th Cir. 2001) ; C.B. v. Sonora Sch. Dist., 691 F. Supp.2d 1123, 1138 (E.D. Cal. 2009) ("The Court may take judicial notice of matters of public record, including duly recorded documents, and court records a......
  • Miksis ex rel. Miksis v. Evanston Twp. High Sch. Dist. # 202, No. 12 C 8497
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. United States District Court (Northern District of Illinois)
    • 27 Enero 2017
    ...the IDEA. It is, rather, a request for enforcement of the stipulated order entered in Fortes–Cortes I. "); C.B. v. Sonora Sch. Dist., 691 F.Supp.2d 1123, 1147 (E.D. Cal. 2009) ("There is no question that the IDEA's exhaustion requirements are limited to claims for violations of federal righ......
  • CB v. SONORA SCHOOL DIST., No. CV-F-09-285 OWW/DLB.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Eastern District of California
    • 8 Marzo 2010
    ...("FAC") and for a more definite statement.1 Plaintiff filed the FAC pursuant to the Memorandum Decision filed on September 22, 2009, 691 F.Supp.2d 1123 (E.D.Cal. 2009) ("September 22 Memorandum Decision"). As "Facts Common to All Causes of Action," the FAC 9) In the 2007-2208 school year, m......
  • Wormuth v. Lammersville Union Sch. Dist., No. 2:15–cv–01572–KJM–EFB
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Eastern District of California
    • 22 Enero 2018
    ...all disciplinary decisions, see, e.g. , Corales v. Bennett , 488 F.Supp.2d 975, 990 (C.D. Cal. 2007) ; C.B. v. Sonora Sch. Dist ., 691 F.Supp.2d 1123, 1152 (E.D. Cal. 2009).Here, Principal Yeager has not engaged in this detailed analysis, arguing instead for blanket discretionary immunity. ......
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