Greene v. Wright

Decision Date21 September 2005
Docket NumberNo. 3:04CV658 (MRK).,3:04CV658 (MRK).
Citation389 F.Supp.2d 416
CourtU.S. District Court — District of Connecticut
PartiesWilliam P. GREENE, Plaintiff, v. Thomas WRIGHT, et al., Defendants.

William P. Greene, Bethany, CT, pro se.

Daniel R. Schaefer, Hartford, CT, for Defendants.


KRAVITZ, District Judge.

In this action, Plaintiff William P. Greene sues twenty-three Defendants, including twelve police officers, three Assistant State's Attorneys, three Connecticut Department of Children and Families personnel, two judges, two Judicial Branch Victim Services Advocates, and a Superior Court Family Services worker. Mr. Greene asserts claims under 42 U.S.C. §§ 1983 and 1985(3) for violations of his Fifth, Sixth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights, stemming from an arrest that occurred on July 20, 2003, and the state prosecution that followed. Currently pending are Mr. Greene's motion for a preliminary injunction and three motions to dismiss. Plaintiff's Motion for Preliminary Injunction [doc. # 49]; Motion To Dismiss [doc. # 47]; Motion To Dismiss [doc. # 79]; Motion To Dismiss [doc. # 82]. For reasons set forth below, the Court denies the preliminary injunction motion and grants in part the motions to dismiss.


This is not Mr. Greene's first attempt to plead a cause of action, nor defendants' first effort to dismiss the action. Mr. Greene filed his first complaint in April 2004. That complaint asserted claims only against the State of Connecticut, the State Judicial Branch, and the State Department of Children and Families. Complaint [doc. # 1]. The Court dismissed that complaint as to all Defendants without prejudice on the basis of sovereign immunity. Judgment [doc. # 33]; Memorandum of Decision [doc. # 32] at 2-3. However, the Court explained that if Mr. Greene wished to seek relief, he would need to proceed against state officials in their official (if prospective injunctive relief were sought) or individual (if damages were sought) capacities, and would need to file any such amended complaint within 30 days. See Memorandum of Decision [doc # 32] at 4.

Mr. Greene did so on December 22, this time naming seventeen Defendants. Amended Complaint [doc. # 35]. He also moved for a preliminary injunction, to which all seventeen Defendants objected. See Plaintiff's Motion for a Preliminary Injunction [doc. # 49]; Opposition To Motion for a Preliminary Injunction [doc. # 60]; Objection To Motion for a Preliminary Injunction [doc. # 61]. Nine of the Defendants also filed a motion to dismiss the Amended Complaint, and the other eight filed an answer. See Motion To Dismiss [doc. # 47]; Answer and Affirmative Defenses [doc. # 52]. Mr. Greene never filed a response to the motion to dismiss, though it was due by March 21. Instead, on April 29, Mr. Greene moved for an extension of time so that he could obtain the names of six Cheshire police officers whom he wished to add as Defendants. Motion To Request Extension of Time [doc. # 63]. The Court granted the motion and set a deadline of June 6 for Mr. Greene "to join any additional parties and file any and all amendments of pleadings." Order [doc. # 64].

On May 20, Mr. Greene submitted a second Amended Complaint, this time adding six mere Defendants. Amended Complaint [doc. # 66] [hereinafter "Second Amended Complaint"]. Eleven Defendants answered the Second Amended Complaint. See Answer to Amended Complaint [doc. # 78]. Two others moved to dismiss it, along with the original nine Defendants who had moved to dismiss the first Amended Complaint. See Motion To Dismiss [doc. # 82]; Defendants' Reply Brief in Support of Motion To Dismiss [doc. # 84].

On May 27, twelve Defendants moved the Court to require Mr. Greene to post a $500 security bond pursuant to District Court Local Rule 83.3(a). Motion for Security Costs [doc. # 72]. The Court granted the motion the same day [doc. # 73], and Mr. Greene posted the bond on June 28. Because the posting of the bond was not entered until July 1, Defendants were unaware of Mr. Greene's compliance with the Court's May 27 order, and eleven of them (all except Jay Moore) moved to dismiss on June 29 for failure to post the required bond. Motion To Dismiss [doc. # 79]. This motion is still before the Court, and the Court now DENIES it as moot.


Mr. Greene's claims are based on the following facts taken from his Second Amended Complaint and his Affidavit in Support of Request for a Preliminary Injunction [doc. # 51] [hereinafter "Preliminary Injunction Affidavit"]. Where Mr. Greene's complaint omits facts necessary for understanding the relevant issues, the Court has supplemented its description with uncontested facts from Defendants' briefs. Mr. Green includes in his filings a bewildering array of accusations, some against named Defendants and many others against unrelated parties. The Court has included only those allegations that bear on the present dispute against the named defendants.

On July 20, 2003, Cheshire police officers responded to a complaint by Mr. Greene's wife, Cynthia Greene. Ms. Greene said she had been physically and sexually assaulted by her husband. Memorandum of Law in Support of the State Defendants' Motion to Dismiss [doc. # 48] at 2 [hereinafter "Defendants' Feb. 25 Memo"]. Police took Ms. Greene to the Cheshire Police Department, where she met with Detective Dennis Boucher, who took a statement in which Ms. Greene accused her husband of physically abusing her. Second Amended Complaint at 5-6. Mr. Greene alleges that police helped Ms. Greene make her statement, which was filled with false allegations and which she has since recanted. Id. at 6.

Cheshire police officers proceeded to the Greene residence, where they arrested Mr. Greene, in his view using an unjustified and dangerous display of force. Id. at 17-20. Mr. Greene also objects to three police reports — an initial incident report and two supplemental reports — which he claims contain several falsehoods and inconsistencies. The initial incident report, written by Officer Wright, describes the Cheshire Police Department's initial contact with Ms. Greene and her case. Preliminary Injunction Affidavit at Exhibit 10. The first supplemental investigative report, written by Detective William Fountain, details a search of the Greene residence by Detective Lieutenant Joseph Popovich and Officer James Nemphos. Id. at Exhibit 8A. The second supplemental report is a description by Detective Boucher of his interview with Ms. Greene. Id. at Exhibit 8B. Mr. Greene alleges that police fabricated parts of these reports and omitted exculpatory details in order to strengthen the State's criminal case against him. Second Amended Complaint at 6, 17-31.

The same morning of the arrest, Cheshire police called the Connecticut Department of Children and Families (DCF) to request that an investigator be sent to interview Cynthia Greene and the two Greene children. DCF sent Karen Diaz. Id. at 7. According to Mr. Greene's allegations, Ms. Diaz wrote up a service agreement "which contained directives for her to follow," such as getting a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) and not allowing Mr. Greene back in the house. Id. at 7. Ms. Diaz supposedly pressured Ms. Greene into signing the agreement by threatening to take away her children if she refused. Id.

In a follow-up visit the next day, DCF social worker Steven Yachtis spoke with Mr. Greene and the children. Mr. Yachtis prepared an investigative report that Mr. Greene asserts was untruthful and calculated to paint him as an abusive husband and father. Id. at 8-10. To further bolster the State's case, Victim Services Advocate Adriana Venegas allegedly prepared an application for a TRO and pressured Ms. Greene to sign it, again threatening the removal of Ms. Greene's children. Id. at 12. According to Mr. Greene, the TRO was crucial to the State's case against Mr. Greene, because if Ms. Greene later recanted her accusations it would enable prosecutors to claim that she suffered from Battered Woman's Syndrome. Id. at 12-13.

After Cheshire police took Mr. Greene into custody, he was arraigned in Meriden on charges of 2nd degree kidnapping, threatening, 3rd degree aggravated assault assault, and 1st degree unlawful restraint. Defendants' Feb. 25 Memo at 7. After Mr. Greene's arraignment, Detective Boucher informed him that bail would be set at $500,000, which Mr. Greene claims was unconstitutionally excessive. Second Amended Complaint at 5. Upon his release on bail, Mr. Greene asked Lieutenant Scott Moore to call Mr. Greene's wife so that he could retrieve his car, clothes, and wallet. Id. at 32. According to Mr. Greene, Lieutenant Moore called but reported that Ms. Greene had refused. When Mr. Greene requested assistance, Lieutenant Moore refused, "fail[ing] to protect Plaintiff's Fifth Amendment property rights." Id.

After arraignment, the presiding judge transferred Mr. Greene's criminal case from Meriden to New Haven. See Defendants' Feb. 25 Memo at 8. Assistant State's Attorney Maxine Wilensky initiated the first criminal information against Mr. Greene. Id. Mr. Greene asserts that Ms. Wilensky violated his rights by including fabricated charges of "Risk of Injury to a child, Reckless Endangerment 2nd Degree, and an [sic] second charge of Sexual Assault-Spouse/Cohabitr." Preliminary Injunction Affidavit at 38-39. Mr. Greene's case was then transferred to Assistant State's Attorney Beth Baron, temporarily transferred to Assistant State's Attorney John Waddock, who initiated a superseding criminal information against Mr. Greene while Ms. Baron was on leave, and then transferred back to Ms. Baron. Defendants' Feb. 25 Memo at 8-9. Judge Richard Damiani presided over pretrial matters in Mr. Greene's criminal case and, according to Mr. Greene, allowed his prosecution to go forward "for vindictive reasons." Preliminary Injunction Affidavit at 44. Judge Damiani...

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