United States District Court, D. Arizona
G. Campbell Senior United States District Judge
case concerns the alleged wrongful removal of a minor child,
A.E., from his father's custody; his placement into
foster care; and his alleged molestation while in the foster
care system. A.E.'s claims have since been dismissed
without prejudice (Doc. 145), and the only remaining claims
are those asserted by A.E.'s father, Robert E. Defendants
separately move for summary judgment. Docs. 160, 162.
Defendant Tungland Corporation joins in the motion filed by
the State Defendants and Angel Doe. Doc. 166. Plaintiff has
not responded. The Court will grant the motions for summary
Summary Judgment Standard.
seeking summary judgment “bears the initial
responsibility of informing the district court of the basis
for its motion, and identifying those portions of [the
record] which it believes demonstrate the absence of a
genuine issue of material fact.” Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). Summary judgment is
appropriate if the evidence, viewed in the light most
favorable to the nonmoving party, shows “that there is
no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(a). Rule 56 further provides:
If a party fails to . . . properly address another
party's assertion of fact as required by Rule 56(c), the
court may . . . consider the fact undisputed for purposes of
the motion [or] grant summary judgment if the motion and
supporting materials - including the facts considered
undisputed - show that the movant is entitled to it[.]
Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e)(3). Thus, the party opposing summary
judgment “may not rest upon the mere allegations or
denials of [the party's] pleadings, but . . . must set
forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue
for trial.” Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith
Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 n.11 (1986) (emphasis
added); see LRCiv 56.1(b) (requiring the party
opposing summary judgment to present evidence that
establishes a genuine issue of material fact or otherwise
precludes judgment in favor of the moving party).
moved for summary judgment on July 25, 2019. Docs. 160, 162.
Plaintiff has not responded to the motions despite being
warned that failure to demonstrate a genuine issue of
material fact may entitle Defendants to judgment as a matter
of law under Rule 56. Doc. 164. Based on Defendants'
statements of facts and supporting evidence (Docs. 161, 163),
the following facts are undisputed. See Fed. R. Civ.
8, 2015, Plaintiffs filed an amended complaint against
Defendants seeking damages on claims of negligence and
violation of civil rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for
incidents that took place while A.E. was in state custody.
Doc. 26. Plaintiffs allege A.E. was unlawfully taken from his
family, placed in dangerous conditions, exposed to
“sexual, mental, and physical abuse, ” and
“[d]rugged . . . with harmfully inappropriate
psychotropics notwithstanding the denial of parental
consent.” Doc. 1-1 at 11-12.
October 14, 2016, multiple defendants filed a joint motion to
dismiss for lack of prosecution. Doc. 116. The Court granted
the motion and dismissed the case with prejudice. Doc. 119.
On appeal, the Ninth Circuit reversed and remanded with
instructions to impose a sanction other than dismissal with
prejudice. Docs. 128, 128-1 at 2.
August 21, 2018, Plaintiff A.E. filed a motion to dismiss,
which the Court granted without prejudice as to all claims.
Docs. 145, 148. In December 2018, the Court denied motions
for summary judgment filed by Defendant Tungland Corporation
(Doc. 130) and Defendants State of Arizona, Brandy Fuller,
Danielle Reiher, Rosanna Mendoza, John M. Testa, Lisa Wilson,
and Defendant Angel Doe. Docs. 130, 133. In denying the
motions, the Court, in the interests of justice, reopened
discovery “for a limited period of time in order to
allow the remaining parties in this case to move forward with
litigating their claims.” Doc. 146.
the Court's order, Plaintiff has failed to participate in
this litigation. Doc. 161 ¶ 1. Notably, Plaintiff has
failed to respond to requests from admissions both from
Defendant Angel Doe and the State Defendants, has failed to
attend his deposition on April 23, 2019, has served no
discovery, and has not contacted any attorney of record in
this case. Id. ¶ 2.
State Defendants' and Defendant Angel ...