The opinion of the court was delivered by: AMY J. ST. EVE, District Judge
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Plaintiff David Craig brings this four-count Complaint alleging
excessive force, due process violations, conspiracy, and a state
law malicious prosecution claim against Chicago Police Officers
J.A. Huayamave, J. Arroyo, J.M. Uzubell, M.S. Janus, and the City
of Chicago. Before the Court is Defendants Huayamave's and
Janus's Partial Motion to Dismiss Counts II and IV pursuant to
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). For the following
reasons, the Court denies Defendants' motion to dismiss.
The purpose of a motion to dismiss pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) is
to test the legal sufficiency of a complaint, not the merits of
the case. Triad Assoc., Inc. v. Chicago Hous. Auth.,
892 F.2d 583, 586 (7th Cir. 1989). The Court will only grant a motion
to dismiss if "it appears beyond doubt that the plaintiff can
prove no set of facts in support of his claim which would entitle
him to relief." Centers v. Centennial Mortgage, Inc.,
398 F.3d 930, 933 (7th Cir. 2005) (quoting Conley v. Gibson,
355 U.S. 41, 45-46, 78 S. Ct. 99, 102, 2 L. Ed.2d 80 (1957)). When determining a motion to dismiss, the Court is restricted to
reviewing the pleadings, which consist of the complaint, any
attached exhibits, and the supporting briefs. See Thompson v.
Illinois Dept. of Prof'l Regulation, 300 F.3d 750, 753 (7th
Cir. 2002). In making its determination, the Court must assume
the truth of the facts alleged in the pleadings, construe the
allegations liberally, and view them in the light most favorable
to the plaintiff. Centers, 398 F.3d at 333.
The relevant facts alleged in Craig's Complaint, and regarded
as true for the purposes of this motion, are as follows: On March
5, 2004 at about 1:30 a.m., several police officers, including
Defendant Officers Huayamave, Arroyo, Uzubell, and Haleas,
approached Craig, pushed him against a chain link fence, took him
down to the ground, and then arrested him. (R. 1-1, Compl. ¶¶ 5,
6.) The officers placed Craig in a squadrol where his hands
remained handcuffed behind his back. (Id. ¶ 7.) Officer Janus
entered the squadrol and proceeded to hit Craig in the eye with
his fist while Craig remained handcuffed. (Id. ¶ 8.) Officer
Janus then threw Craig on the ground and the other officers
proceeded to kick and beat Craig. (Id.)
Craig further alleges that Defendants caused false charges of
resisting/obstructing an officer and battery to be filed against
him. (Id. ¶ 10.) Subsequently, in April 2004, Huayamave and
Janus falsely filed an amendment to the resisting arrest charge
by stating that Craig was "flailing his arms and pushing the P.O.
off him." (Id. ¶ 11.) In or about April 2004, Huayamave and
Janus filed a false amendment to the battery charge stating that
Craig "struck the victim [Janus] with his fists and kicked the
victim with his legs repeatedly, causing P.O. Janus' knuckle to
shatter." (Id. ¶ 12.) Craig further alleges that in December of
2004, Janus filed another false amendment to the battery charge
by crossing out the previous amendment and substituting that Craig "kicked PO Janus in the chest and hit PO Janus about the
chest with his hands causing bruising and swelling." (Id. ¶
On or about December 13, 2004, Craig stood trial for the
resisting and/or obstructing arrest and battery charges and the
jury found him not guilty. (Id. ¶ 14.) Because of the acts and
omissions of Defendants, Craig alleges that he sustained physical
injuries, humiliation, and indignities, and suffered great
physical, mental, and emotional pain and suffering. (Id. ¶ 15.)
On January 11, 2005, Craig filed the a four-count Complaint
against the City of Chicago and Chicago Police Officers
Huayamave, Arroyo, Uzubell, Haleas, and Janus seeking to recover
for violations of his rights under the federal constitution and
Illinois state law. In his Complaint, Craig asserts Counts I and
III against all of the individual Defendants for excessive force
and conspiracy. In Count II, Craig alleges a due process claim
against Defendants Huayamave and Janus only. Finally, in Count
IV, Craig brings a malicious prosecution claim under Illinois law
against Officers Janus and Huayamave and the City of Chicago.
I. Count II Due Process Violation
In Count II of the Complaint, Craig alleges a due process claim
against Huayamave and Janus in violation of 42. U.S.C. § 1983.
Section 1983 provides a cause of action against any person who,
acting under color of state law, deprives another person of a
right, privilege, or immunity secured by the United States
Constitution or federal laws. See 42 U.S.C. § 1983; Lekas v.
Briley, 405 F.3d 602, 606 (7th Cir. 2005). The standards for
a successful Section 1983 claim against local police officers are
well known. Ienco v. City of Chicago, 286 F.3d 994, 997-98
(7th Cir. 2002). To prove an officer's liability, a plaintiff
must show that (1) the officer deprived the plaintiff of a federal right and (2) the officer was
acting under color of state law at the time of the deprivation.
Here, Craig alleges that Huayamave and Janus deprived him of
his due process right to a fair criminal trial on the charges of
battery and resisting arrest and/or obstructing justice.
Specifically, Craig alleges that Huayamave and Janus submitted
false charges in the criminal complaints, false amendments to the
charges, and false police reports. Craig further alleges that
Defendants withheld exculpatory evidence from the prosecution.
Defendants, however, argue that Craig has not sufficiently
alleged a denial of his due process rights to a fair trial
because the decision to charge a criminal defendant and proceed
to trial falls solely within the discretion of the prosecutor,
not the police. In Brady v. Maryland, the Supreme Court held
that a prosecutor's failure to disclose favorable, material
evidence violates a defendant's procedural due process rights.
373 U.S. 83, 87, 83 S. Ct. 1194, 10 L.Ed.2d 215 (1963). Police
officers, however, may face liability for a Brady violation
when they fabricate inculpatory evidence or conceal exculpatory
evidence. Newsome v. McCabe, 256 F.3d 747, 752 (7th Cir.
2001). Therefore, Defendants' assertion that Craig cannot bring
his due process claim ...