Horne v. Polk, No. CV-18-08010-PCT-SPL

CourtUnited States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. District of Arizona
Writing for the CourtHonorable Steven P. Logan United States District Judge
PartiesThomas Horne, et al., Plaintiffs, v. Sheila Sullivan Polk, Defendant.
Decision Date16 April 2019
Docket NumberNo. CV-18-08010-PCT-SPL

Thomas Horne, et al., Plaintiffs,
Sheila Sullivan Polk, Defendant.

No. CV-18-08010-PCT-SPL


April 16, 2019


Plaintiffs Thomas Horne and Kathleen Winn (the "Plaintiffs") filed suit against Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk (the "Defendant") alleging violations of their due process rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (Doc. 1) The Defendant moved to dismiss the Plaintiffs' claims (Doc. 12), which the Court denied on February 26, 2019. (Doc. 20) The Plaintiff filed a motion for reconsideration (the "Motion") on March 11, 2019. (Doc. 21) For the reasons set forth below, the Motion is granted.

Reconsideration is disfavored and "appropriate only in rare circumstances." WildEarth Guardians v. United States Dep't of Justice, 283 F.Supp.3d 783, 795 n.11 (D. Ariz. June 21, 2017); see also Bergdale v. Countrywide Bank FSB, No. CV-12-8057-PCT-SMM, 2014 WL 12643162, at *2 (D. Ariz. May 23, 2014) ("[Reconsideration] motions should not be used for the purpose of asking a court to rethink what the court had already thought through-rightly or wrongly.") A motion for reconsideration will be granted only where the Court "(1) is presented with newly discovered evidence, (2) committed clear error or the initial decision was manifestly unjust, or (3) if there is an intervening change

Page 2

in controlling law." Sch. Dist. No. 1J, Multnomah Cty., Or. v. ACandS, Inc., 5 F.3d 1255, 1263 (9th Cir. 1993).

The Defendant requests for the Court to reconsider its prior Order (Doc. 20) because the Court incorrectly applied the standard for determining when the Plaintiffs' due process claim accrued. (Doc. 21 at 5) The Defendant argues that the Court incorrectly applied the standard for a malicious prosecution claim instead of the standard for a due process claim, which accrues at the time due process is denied. (Doc. 21 at 5) The basis for the Motion is derived from the Court's statement that " [i]t is well settled that a claim pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 brought on the basis of malicious prosecution does not accrue until criminal proceedings terminate in favor of the accused." (Doc. 20 at 8) In support of this statement, the Court followed it with a parenthetical stating that "the Heck precedent applies to all plaintiffs' civil rights claims, and the statute of limitations begins when the Arizona Supreme Court declines to review an appeal." (Doc. 20 at 8)

Federal law determines when a federal civil rights claim accrues. Wallace v. Kato, 549 U.S. 384 (2007) (stating "the accrual date of a § 1983 cause of action is a question of federal law that is not resolved by reference to state law."); Morales v. City of Los Angeles, 214 F.3d 1151, 1154 (9th Cir. 2000). Under federal law, a claim accrues "when the plaintiff knows or has reason to know of the actual injury" that is the basis of the cause of action. Wallace, 549 U.S. at 384 (2007) (stating that accrual occurs when the plaintiff has a complete and present cause of action); Lukovsky v. City & County of San Francisco, 535 F.3d 1044, 1051 (9th Cir. 2008); Hoesterey v. City of Cathedral City, 945 F.2d 317, 318 (9th Cir. 1991) (stating the general rule for the accrual of 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claims is "a cause of action generally accrues when a plaintiff knows or has reason to know of the injury which is the basis of his action."). In a § 1983 action for a substantive due process violation, the injury giving rise to the claim is complete when there is an abuse of power by an official acting under color of law that shocks the conscience. Reiss v. Arizona Dep't of Child Safety, 2018 WL 6067258, at 8 (D. Ariz. Nov. 20, 2018) (citing Cty. of Sacramento v. Lewis, 523 U.S. 833, 834 (1998)).

Page 3

The Defendant argues that the Plaintiffs' due process claim accrued in May 2014 when the Defendant issued her final administrative decision. (Doc. 21 at 4) Alternatively, the Defendant...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT