Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Palka v. Dart

April 11, 2008

TADEUSZ PALKA, PLAINTIFF,
v.
COOK COUNTY SHERIFF THOMAS DART, COOK COUNTY SHERIFF POLICE DETECTIVE ROGER SHELTON, INDIVIDUALLY AND JAMES DAVIS, INDIVIDUALLY, AND TWO UNKNOWN CHICAGO POLICE OFFICERS, INDIVIDUALLY, BELIEVED TO BE FROM AREA FIVE POLICE HEADQUARTERS, AND THE CITY OF CHICAGO, DEFENDANT .



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Virginia M. Kendall, United States District Judge

Judge Virginia M. Kendall

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

Tadeusz Palka ("Palka") filed a Complaint against Cook County Sheriff Police Detective Roger Shelton ("Shelton"), Cook County Sheriff Police Detective James Davis ("Davis"), Two Unknown Chicago Police Officers ("unknown officers"), and the Chicago Police Department alleging a violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Palka filed a First Amended Complaint against Cook County Sheriff Thomas Dart ("Dart"), Shelton, Davis, the unknown officers, and the City of Chicago ("the City"). Shelton, Davis, Dart, and the City moved to dismiss Palka's First Amended Complaint.

STATEMENT OF FACTS

Palka alleges that his son, Peter J. Palka ("Peter Palka"), was terminated from the Chicago Police Academy on February 1, 2007 due to his national origin and race. First Amend. Cmplt. at ¶¶5-6. Palka spoke to Assistant Deputy Superintendent Matthew Tobias, the individual who terminated Peter Palka, and asked him to allow Peter Palka back in class. Id. at ¶7. Tobias refused, and Palka retained counsel to look into the matter. Id. at ¶12. Palka met with the attorney on May 7, 2007, and it was his understanding that the attorney would discuss the matter with someone at the Police Department on Thursday, May 10, 2007. Id. at ¶13.

On May 10, 2007, at approximately 10:30 p.m. when Paulka arrived home, he discovered two uniformed Chicago police officers in unmarked squad cars waiting for him. Id. at ¶14. Prior to Palka's arrival, the officers woke up his neighbor to ask if Palka was at home. Id. at ¶14.When Palka pulled into his driveway, the officers asked to speak with him. Id. at ¶15. The officers then accused Palka of making threatening phone calls to a school attended by Tobias's children, an accusation that Palka denied. Id. at ¶¶18-20. The officers also told Palked that they knew his son was kicked out of the police academy and that he should not "push" on that. Id. at ¶23. The police then left Palka's home. Id. at ¶26.

The next day, May 11, 2007, Palka saw Chief Edward Carek ("Carek") and told him about the officers' visit the night before. Id. at ¶27. Carek said, "This is a serious thing if they came by your house." Id. at ¶29. Palka then went to Edward Wodnicki ("Wodnicki"), his supervisor, and told him about the prior evening. Id. at ¶30. Wodnicki told Palka not to worry. Id. at ¶31. Later that day, the Director of the Cook County Sheriff's Department Internal Affairs Division, Raymond T. Zene ("Zene"), visited Wodnicki. Id. at ¶32. Palka was then called to Wodnicki's office, where Zene took his badge and identifications. Id. at ¶34. Zene told Palka that a "big wheel" at the Chicago Police Department told him to do this. Id. at ¶36. Wodnicki stated, "What did I tell you? You tried to help your son and you got screwed." Id. at ¶37. An Internal Affairs investigator later took Palka downstairs to "show everyone" that he was no longer a deputy. Id. at ¶43. Palka became sick over his situation and his doctor put him on medical leave. Id. at ¶¶48-49.

The Inspector General later required Palka to report to his office to discuss the phone calls. Id. at ¶50. There, detectives Shelton and Davis claimed that Palka had told them that he was sorry and would not make any more phone calls. Id. at ¶52. Palka asserted that he never made the calls nor did he say such a thing. Id. at 53. The detectives spoke to Palka's lawyer and told her that they would drop the charges if Palka resigned from the Sheriff's Office. Palka refused the offer. Id. at ¶¶55-58.

Shelton and Davis later visited Palka's friend, Ronnie Gaines ("Gaines"), and asked him about Palka. Id. at ¶¶59-62. Gains told the detectives that Palka had not talked to him about making calls to Tobias's children's school. Id. at ¶¶66-67. The detectives then tried to intimidate Gaines, implying that he would be charged with a crime if he did not say anything negative about Palka. Id. at ¶¶65, 68. Palka claims that the detectives are attempting to intimidate many of his friends and associates. Id. at ¶69. Palka asserts that he is being harassed because he challenged Tobias's decision to dismiss his son from the police academy. Id. at ¶71.

STANDARD

When considering a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), a court must accept as true all facts alleged in the complaint and construe all reasonable inferences in favor of the plaintiff. See Murphy v. Walker, 51 F.3d 714, 717 (7th Cir. 1995). To state a claim upon which relief can be granted, a complaint must contain a "short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2). A plaintiff need not allege all facts involved in the claim. See Sanjuan v. Am. Bd. of Psychiatry & Neurology, Inc., 40 F.3d 247, 251 (7th Cir. 1994).

However, in order to survive a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, the claim must be supported by facts that, if taken as true, at least plausibly suggest that the plaintiff is entitled to relief. See Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 1974 (2007). Such a set of facts must "raise a reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence" of illegality. Id. at 1965.

ANALYSIS

Section ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.