United States District Court, D. Arizona
Bradley J. Ruggles, Plaintiff,
City of Scottsdale, et al., Defendants.
Honorable Steven P. Logan United States District Judge
the Court is City of Scottsdale's (the
“Defendant”) Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's
Third Complaint (the “Motion”). (Doc. 44) The
Motion was fully briefed on August 5, 2019, and the Plaintiff
requested oral argument. (Docs. 53, 54) Because it would not
assist in resolution of the instant issues, the Court finds
the pending motion is suitable for decision without oral
argument. See LRCiv. 7.2(f); Fed.R.Civ.P. 78(b);
Partridge v. Reich, 141 F.3d 920, 926 (9th Cir.
1998). For the reasons that follow, the Motion will be
case arises out of a domestic dispute involving Bradley J.
Ruggles (the “Plaintiff”) in November 2016. (Doc.
38 at 2; Doc. 44 at 3) As a result of the domestic dispute,
the Plaintiff was arrested by a City of Scottsdale police
officer and charged with assault and disorderly conduct.
(Doc. 44 at 4) The charges against the Plaintiff were
dismissed on July 14, 2017. (Doc. 44 at 6) The Plaintiff
initiated this lawsuit on July 13, 2018 in the Maricopa
County Superior Court, alleging claims for violations of his
constitutional rights and malicious prosecution. (Doc. 1-3)
On April 29, 2019, the Plaintiff filed his second amended
complaint (the “Complaint”) alleging identical
causes of action related to his arrest and prosecution for
assault and disorderly conduct. (Doc. 38)
survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint must contain
“a short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief” such that the
defendant is given “fair notice of what the . . . claim
is and the grounds upon which it rests.” Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 554, 555 (2007) (quoting
Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2); Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41,
47 (1957)). The Court may dismiss a complaint for failure to
state a claim under Federal Rule 12(b)(6) for two reasons:
(1) lack of a cognizable legal theory, and (2) insufficient
facts alleged under a cognizable legal theory. Balistreri
v. Pacificia Police Dep't, 901 F.2d 696, 699 (9th
deciding a motion to dismiss, the Court must “accept as
true all well-pleaded allegations of material fact, and
construe them in the light most favorable to the non-moving
party.” Daniels-Hall v. Nat'l Educ.
Ass'n, 629 F.3d 992, 998 (9th Cir. 2010). In
comparison, “allegations that are merely conclusory,
unwarranted deductions of fact, or unreasonable
inferences” are not entitled to the assumption of
truth, and “are insufficient to defeat a motion to
dismiss for failure to state a claim.” Id.;
In re Cutera Sec. Litig., 610 F.3d 1103, 1108 (9th
Cir. 2010). A plaintiff need not prove the case on the
pleadings to survive a motion to dismiss. OSU Student
All. v. Ray, 699 F.3d 1053, 1078 (9th Cir. 2012).
ordinarily may not consider evidence outside the pleadings in
ruling on a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss. Zemelka v.
Trans Union LLC, 2019 WL 2327813, at 1 (D. Ariz. May 31,
2019) (citing United States v. Ritchie, 342 F.3d
903, 907 (9th Cir. 2003)). “A court may, however,
consider materials-documents attached to the complaint,
documents incorporated by reference in the complaint, or
matters of judicial notice-without converting the motion to
dismiss into a motion for summary judgment.”
Id. Additionally, “[e]ven if a document is not
attached to a complaint, it may be incorporated by reference
into a complaint if the plaintiff refers extensively to the
document or the document forms the basis of the
plaintiff's claim.” Lovelace v. Equifax Info.
Servs. LLC, 2019 WL 2410800, at 1 (D. Ariz. June 7,
2019) (citing Ritchie, 342 F.3d at 908). A plaintiff
need “not explicitly allege the contents of that
document in the complaint” for the court to consider
it, as long as the “plaintiff's claim depends on
the contents of [the] document, the defendant attaches the
document to its motion to dismiss, and the parties do not
dispute the authenticity of the document.” Knievel
v. ESPN, 393 F.3d 1068, 1076 (9th Cir. 2005).
“[T]he district court may treat such a document as part
of the complaint, and thus may assume that its contents are
true for purposes of a motion to dismiss under Rule
12(b)(6).” Ritchie, 342 F.3d at 908.
Claim Pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Complaint, the Plaintiff generally asserts a claim pursuant
to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, but the Plaintiff does not clearly
identify the basis of this claim. (Doc. 38 at 4) Instead the
Plaintiff states that this claim arises out of the
“alleged constitutional violations of [his]
rights” as he has been denied “arrest without
probable cause, right to remain silent, the right to counsel,
and provide safe guards to the atmosphere and environment of
the incommunicado interrogation to give plaintiff choice to
give a statement freely.” (Doc. 38 at 4-5) The
Defendant clarifies that the Plaintiff is using the §
1983 claim to allege the violation of his 4th Amendment, 5th
Amendment, 6th Amendment and 14th Amendment rights. (Doc. 44
at 6) The Defendant argues that the Plaintiff's §
1983 claim must be dismissed because the Plaintiff has not
alleged that any particular municipal policy caused or
resulted in the violation of the Plaintiff's
constitutional rights. (Doc. 44 at 4)
government entity is liable under § 1983 when action
pursuant to official municipal policy of some nature causes a
constitutional tort. Lee v. City of Los Angeles, 250
F.3d 668, 681-82 (9th Cir. 2001) (citing Oviatt v.
Pearce, 954 F.2d 1470, 1473-74 (9th Cir. 1992)). In
order to prevail on a § 1983 claim, a plaintiff must
sufficiently allege that: (1) he was deprived of his
constitutional rights by the defendant and its employees
acting under color of state law; (2) that the defendants have
customs or policies which amount to deliberate indifference
to his constitutional rights; and (3) that these policies are
the moving force behind the constitutional violation.
Lee, 250 F.3d at 681-82.
Complaint, the Plaintiff generally alleges that the
Defendant's police officer violated his constitutional
rights by arresting the Plaintiff without probable cause and
interrogating him. (Doc. 38 at 4-5) At no point in the
Complaint does the Plaintiff allege that his injuries arise
out of the Defendant's customs or policies. Accordingly,
the Court finds that the Plaintiff has failed to sufficiently
state a claim pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, and the
Motion will be granted as to the Plaintiff's § 1983
Claim Pursuant to 42 ...