United States District Court, N.D. Ohio, Eastern Division
OPINION AND ORDER
CHRISTOPHER A. BOYKO UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter comes before the Court upon Defendant Frank Bova's
Motion to Dismiss (ECF DKT #28). For the following reasons,
the Court grants Bova's Motion to Dismiss.
makes the following allegations in his Second Amended
Complaint (ECF DKT #21). On March 9, 2015, Plaintiff became
ill during a visit with his parents in the Cuyahoga County
jail. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 12). Plaintiff's parents
sought help from the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Department
by pressing the alert button for an emergency and Corrections
Officer Fletcher was dispatched to get Plaintiff. (ECF DKT
#21, ¶ 14, 15). Fletcher brought Plaintiff to Brendan
Johnson's office where Plaintiff informed Johnson that he
was not feeling well. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 16, 17). Johnson
disregarded Plaintiff's symptoms and concerns regarding
his health and ordered Plaintiff back to his pod. (ECF DKT
#21, ¶ 18, 19). Johnson then dragged Plaintiff into the
hallway while Fletcher observed. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 21).
persisted in his complaint regarding his medical condition
and asked to be taken to the medical dispensary. (ECF DKT
#21, ¶ 22). In response, Johnson dragged him to the
medical dispensary. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 23). Once at the
medical dispensary, Plaintiff asked Johnson for his name and
identification and Johnson refused to provide Plaintiff with
the information. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 24, 25). As punishment
for Plaintiff's inquiry, Johnson compelled Plaintiff to
stand, causing Plaintiff to collapse. (ECF DKT #21, ¶
27). Johnson then pulled at Plaintiff's right arm and
shoulder, causing injury, and subsequently dragged Plaintiff
into the hallway where he yanked Plaintiff's right arm
behind his back and pushed him up against a wall, causing
further injury. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 28-30).
alleges that Johnson's acts and conduct arose out of the
failure of Defendants Cuyahoga County and Bova to provide
adequate training to Johnson. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 43). As a
result, Johnson was not made aware that the use of
unreasonable force would violate the constitutional rights of
persons in the Cuyahoga County jail. (ECF DKT #21, ¶
43). Plaintiff further alleges that the absence of clear
governmental policy and sufficiently instructing Johnson that
the use of unreasonable force would violate the
constitutional rights of those in the jail resulted in
Plaintiff's injuries. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 44). Plaintiff
also indicates that neither Cuyahoga County nor Bova
disciplined Johnson. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 45). Plaintiff
alleges that failure to provide policy, education and
sanctions for the use of excessive force permitted Johnson to
engage in a pattern of unreasonable force involving
Plaintiff, which shows Defendants implicitly authorized
official misconduct and were deliberately indifferent to
Plaintiff's rights and safety. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 46).
on the foregoing allegations, Plaintiff alleges that
Defendant's actions and conduct using excessive force
violated Plaintiff's rights under the Fourth and
Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution of the United
States in contravention of the Civil Rights Act of 1871, 42
U.S.C. § 1983. (ECF DKT #21, ¶ 46). Bova has filed
a Motion to Dismiss the claims against him. (ECF DKT #28).
deciding a motion to dismiss under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), the
Court must accept as true all of the factual allegations set
forth in the complaint. Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 550 U.S.
544, 555 (2007). If the complaint contains sufficient factual
allegations that, when accepted as true, “state a claim
to relief that is plausible on its face, ” the
complaint will survive the motion to dismiss. Bell
Atlantic v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). A claim
is facially plausible if the “plaintiff pleads factual
content that allows the court to draw the reasonable
inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct
alleged.” Id. at 556. While the complaint need
not contain “detailed factual allegations, ” it
must contain more than “a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action.” Hensley Mfg. v.
Pro-Pride, Inc., 589 F.3d 603, 609 (6th Cir. 2009)
(quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555).
Plaintiff's 42 U.S.C. § 1983 Claim Against
has moved to dismiss all claims against him for failure to
state a claim. In his Complaint, Plaintiff alleges that in
his capacity as sheriff of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Bova failed
to adequately train, provide policy, educate and sanction
Johnson. As a result of Bova's failures, Plaintiff
alleges that Johnson was not made aware that his use of
unreasonable force violated Plaintiff's constitutional
rights. Plaintiff now seeks to hold Bova liable under 42
U.S.C. § 1983 for violations of Plaintiff's Fourth
and Fourteenth Amendment rights.
Bova is Entitled to Qualified Immunity
government officials acting under color of state law commit
violations of constitutional rights, they are generally
subject to liability under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Peatross v. Cty. of Memphis, 818 F.3d 233, 240 (6th
Cir. 2016). The doctrine of qualified immunity, however,
protects government officials from liability “insofar
as their conduct does not violate clearly established . . .
constitutional rights of which a reasonable person would have
known.” Id. (quoting Harlow v.
Fitzgerald, 457 U.S. 800, 818 (1982)). To determine
whether a government official is entitled to qualified
immunity, the court conducts a two-part analysis. The court
must determine: 1) whether the officer's conduct violated
Plaintiff's constitutional right and 2) whether
“the right was clearly established” ...