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DAVIT v. DAVIT

November 18, 2004.

JOHN J. DAVIT, Plaintiff,
v.
CATHY C. DAVIT, ATTORNEY WILLIAM J. STOGSDILL, JR, ATTORNEY JOSEPH GLIMCO, III, JUDGE RODNEY EQUI, JUDGE JAMES JERZ, LISLE POLICE DEPARTMENT, Defendants.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: MARK FILIP, District Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

Plaintiff John J. Davit ("Plaintiff" or Davit") filed a pro se complaint in this matter. In it, Davit alleges that pro se defendant Cathy Davit, Plaintiff's former spouse; Judges Rodney Equi and James Jerz ("Defendant-Judges"), two Illinois State court judges who presided over Davit's divorce proceedings and/or civil enforcement and criminal proceedings that were instituted against Davit in connection with the divorce proceedings; William Stogsdill, Jr. ("Stogsdill"), the attorney who represented Cathy Davit in the divorce proceedings; Joseph Glimco III ("Glimco"), Davit's former attorney who represented Davit in the divorce proceedings; and the Village of Lisle conspired together against Davit in violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act ("RICO"), 18 U.S.C. § 1961 et seq.*fn1

Three motions are presently before the Court. Glimco (D.E. 41), the Defendant-Judges (D.E. 43), and the Village of Lisle (D.E. 44) move this Court under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1) to dismiss Davit's claims on the grounds that this Court does not have subject-matter jurisdiction and under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) on the grounds that Davit's First Amended Complaint (D.E. 38) fails to state claims upon which relief can be granted. For the following reasons, these motions are granted.

  As set forth more fully below, Davit brought this suit in this Court after several years of contentious and what appears to be ongoing family law litigation (and related civil enforcement and criminal litigation against Davit) in the Circuit Court of DuPage County, Illinois, concerning Davit and his former spouse, Defendant Cathy Davit.*fn2 Davit alleges that various individuals involved in this litigation were engaging in racketeering against him. (D.E. 38 at 17.) Davit has brought the present suit against several individuals connected to Davit's divorce proceedings, claiming various violations of the RICO statute as a result of rulings and events in these proceedings that were apparently unfavorable to Davit.*fn3

  BACKGROUND

  In September of 1996, Davit's wife, Defendant Cathy Davit, informed him that they were falling behind on their household bills and mortgage. (Compl. (D.E. 1) at 2.) Based on his wife's representations, Davit, who was not involved in household finances at this time, began to draw $1000 a month from a corporation that Davit had started to cover their personal expenses. (Id.) Davit alleges that Cathy Davit's representations concerning their finances were lies — according to Davit, their combined income was sufficient to cover their bills and mortgage, making the withdrawal of $1000 per month unnecessary. (D.E. 38 at 4.) Whatever the state of the Davits' finances, the bank that held the mortgage on their marital residence sent Davit a notice of foreclosure in August 1997 that indicated that the bank would be foreclosing as a consequence of the couple not making mortgage payments. (D.E. 1 at 2.)

  Davit contends that Cathy Davit's representation to Davit about the state of their financial affairs and her failure to make timely mortgage payments were either precursors or part of what Davit alleges is a sprawling RICO conspiracy against him related to his divorce that has resulted in the "complete collapse of [his] business, all personal family expectations, [his] career[,] and [his] personal financial ruin." (Id. at 2.) Specifically, Davit alleges that Cathy Davit misrepresented their financial situation to Davit so that she could acquire funds from Davit's corporation. (Id. at 3.) According to Davit, Cathy Davit devised this plan with her neighbors and close friends, and the plan called for her intentional failure to make mortgage payments on their marital residence. (Id. at 2.) Davit also makes the counterintuitive allegation (given Cathy Davit's purported intentional non-payment of the couple's mortgage) that Cathy Davit schemed to acquire their marital residence for herself. (D.E. 38 at 5.)

  The circumstances surrounding the foreclosure raised "red-flags" for Davit, and he began considering divorcing Cathy Davit. (D.E. 1 at 2.) Davit ultimately concluded that Cathy Davit was deceiving him, and on February 7, 1998, Davit initiated divorce proceedings against her in the Circuit Court of DuPage County, Illinois. (Id.) Cathy Davit hired Stogsdill's law firm to represent her in the divorce proceedings. (Id.) She did so, Davit alleges, in an attempt to cover up her criminal intentions. (Id.) In this regard, Davit contends that Cathy Davit and Stogsdill conspired to "cover their crimes of fraud, theft, and forgeries to acquire and extort mon[ey] and propert[y] from [Davit]." (Id.) Davit further contends that, as part of this conspiracy, Stogsdill falsely claimed during the divorce proceedings that Davit was hiding two million dollars from Cathy Davit, which false claim resulted in the judges involved in Davit's divorce proceedings "wrongfully rul[ing] against [Davit] . . . [in the] divorce case in hopes of acquiring the [two million dollars] for themselves." (D.E. 1 at 2-3.)

  I. RICO Claims Against the Defendants

  Davit's allegations against the Defendants in this case span twenty-nine pages of pleading (eighteen pages of his amended complaint which "reaffirms" the eleven pages of his original complaint). The Court has done its best to decipher the often disjointed and confusing allegations contained in these pages, keeping in mind Davit is proceeding pro se.

  A. Claims Against Defendant Cathy Davit

  Davit attempts to assert the following claims against Cathy Davit under the RICO statute. First, Davit contends that his former wife conspired with Stogsdill and Glimco, among others, to misrepresent Davit's financial situation to both Davit and the Circuit Court of DuPage County. (D.E. 38 at 4.) Davit claims that Cathy Davit also conspired with Stogsdill and the other named defendants to "intentially [sic] and [with] malice [and] intent? continually mismanage household finances, and continually disregard balancing the household checking account" in purported violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1951, a federal statute that criminalizes the interference with interstate commerce by threats or violence. (Id. at 4-5.) Davit also contends that Cathy Davit conspired with the other Defendants to commit fraud so that she could obtain the marital residence in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1957, a federal statute that criminalizes engaging in monetary transactions in property derived from specified unlawful activity. (Id. at 5.)

  B. Claims Against Defendant Stogsdill

  Davit attempts to assert the following claims against Stogsdill under the RICO statute. Davit alleges that Stogsdill caused or contributed to Davit's termination from his employment at Scanwell Freight Express Corporation and United Parcel Service in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1512 and 1513, federal statutes that criminalize tampering with and retaliating against witnesses, victims, or informants. (D.E. 38 at 6) Davit also alleges that Stogsdill allowed Cathy Davit to achieve "illegal rights" to the marital residence, child support, and maintenance in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1951 and 1952, federal statutes that criminalize (1) the interference with interstate commerce by threats or violence and (2) interstate and foreign travel or transportation in aid of a racketeering enterprise, respectively. (Id.) Davit further alleges that Stogsdill extorted lawyers' fees from Davit by "receiving an illegal judicial ruling from Judge Equi allowing `maintenance' payments" in violation of 750 ILCS § 25/10, a Illinois state statute that provides for certain procedures in an expedited child support hearing where a responding party fails to appear. (Id. at 7.) This "illegal" ruling, Davit alleges, was for the sole purpose to allow Stogsdill to accumulate attorneys' fees over the course of Davit's six-year-long divorce proceeding, which accumulation of fees resulted in violations of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1503, 1513, 1951, 1952, and 1956. (Id.) Davit also alleges that Stogsdill violated "750 ILCS § 25/20" (the Court was unable to find such a statute) by "continuing to collect . . . fees under the child-support program. . . ." (Id.) Davit also apparently contends that Stogsdill's "collection" of child support payments from Davit violated 18 U.S.C. §§ 1511, 1513, 1951, and 1952. (Id. at 8.) Davit further alleges that Stogsdill conspired with various DuPage County judges to have Davit "illegally incarcerated" (id.) — an apparent reference to Davit's having been incarcerated in connection with a criminal conviction for violating an order of protection and resisting arrest and/or repeatedly incarcerated in connection with contempt proceedings for failure to pay child support and health insurance obligations.

  C. Claims Against Defendant Village of Lisle

  Davit attempts to assert the following claims against the Village of Lisle under the RICO statute. Davit contends that "the Lisle Police [D]epartment . . . knowingly abuse[d] [its] position as a? guardian of its citizen and resident of Lisle in [Davit's] effort to secure proper police help [a]gainst crimes committed against him during his divorce proceeding." (D.E. 1 at 6.) Specifically, Davit alleges that the Lisle Police Department (1) falsified a police report with respect to an assault and battery charge (D.E. 38 at 10); (2) failed to investigate Davit's claim of forgery (D.E. 1 at 6); and (3) refused to cooperate with Davit or investigate Davit's criminal allegations (D.E. 38 at 10). These acts and omissions, Davit contends, are in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1503, a federal statute that criminalizes influencing or injuring a federal judicial officer or juror; 18 U.S.C. § 1510, a federal statute that criminalizes the obstruction of federal criminal investigations; 18 U.S.C. § 1511, a federal statute that criminalizes the obstruction of state or local law enforcement officials with the intent to facilitate an illegal gambling business; and 18 U.S.C. § 1512, a federal statute that criminalizes tampering with witnesses, victims, or informants in connection with federal proceedings and federal criminal investigations. (D.E. 38 at 11.) D. Claims Against Defendant Glimco

  Davit attempts to assert the following claims against Defendant Glimco under the RICO statute. Davit alleges Glimco, a former employee of Stogsdill's law firm, and the attorney that represented Davit in the divorce proceedings, "falsely represented [Davit] . . . and aid[ed] in . . . [the] extortion and racketeering plan. . . ." (D.E. 1 at 7.) Davit appears to take issue with the manner in which Glimco represented him in the divorce proceedings, alleging that (1) Glimco would not present certain evidence in opposition to Cathy Davit's claims and arguments; (2) Glimco did not pursue or investigate Davit's claims regarding a purported forgery; (3) Glimco did not pursue a purported attack on Davit's son as evidence in the divorce proceedings against Cathy Davit; and (4) Glimco misrepresented Davit's financial situation to the state court during the divorce proceedings. (D.E. 1 at 7.) Davit also alleges that Glimco aided in Stogsdill's extortion and racketeering in an attempt to acquire two million dollars from Davit. (Id. at 7-8.) Davit contends that Glimco violated 18 U.S.C. § 1503, a federal statute that criminalizes the influencing or injuring of an officer of a federal court or juror. (D.E. 38 at 12.)

  E. Claims Against Defendant Judge Equi

  Davit attempts to assert the following claims against Judge Equi under the RICO statute. Davit contends that Judge Equi conspired with the other Defendants "to identify and collect a sum of $2,000,000" from Davit. (D.E. 38 at 13.) Judge Equi also allegedly "look[ed] the other way on incriminating evidence" and "destroy[ed] all were-withal [sic] . . . of Davit . . . through . . . illegal judicial court rulings based on false charges." (Id.) Davit alleges that, throughout Davit's divorce proceedings, Judge Equi violated 18 U.S.C. § 1502, a federal statute that criminalizes resisting an extradition agent of the United States; 18 U.S.C. § 1503, a federal statute that criminalizes influencing or injuring a juror or an officer of a federal court; 18 U.S.C. § 1510, a federal statute that criminalizes the obstruction of federal criminal investigations; 18 U.S.C. § 1511, a federal statute that criminalizes the obstruction of state or local law enforcement with the intent to facilitate an illegal gambling business; 18 U.S.C. § 1512, a federal statute that criminalizes tampering with a witness, victim, or informant; 18 U.S.C. § 1513, a federal statute that criminalizes retaliating against a witness, victim, or an informant; 18 U.S.C. § 1951, a federal statute ...


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