The opinion of the court was delivered by: Michael P. McCUSKEY Chief U.S. District Judge
E-FILED Monday, 12 December, 2011 04:57:45 PM
Clerk, U.S. District Court, ILCD
There are four pending motions in this case which, because the case is also before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, raise somewhat complicated issues regarding this court's jurisdiction. After careful consideration, this court concludes that it lacks jurisdiction over both Motions for Reconsideration (#66, #78). The Motions (#66, #78) are therefore DISMISSED for lack of jurisdiction. In addition, Plaintiff's Motion for Leave to File Second Amended Complaint (#70) is DISMISSED without prejudice and Defendants' Motion to Stay Proceedings (#66) is GRANTED.
On February 25, 2011, Plaintiff, Stephanie Bond,*fn1 filed her Complaint (#1) against Champaign County Sheriff Dan Walsh, David Coffey, Richard Ferriman, Mark Goodwin, Seth Herrig, Dustin Heuerman, Allen Jones, Nick Neeves, Richard Quick, Carey Schalber, Eric Shumate, Jeff Vercler, Robert Weston, Richard Coleman, Keith Cunningham, Kris Bolt, State of Illinois, Illinois State Police, Michael Atkinson, Kim Cessna, Robert Kotcher, James Morrissey, and Troy Phillips. On April 26, 2011, a Motion to Dismiss (#30) and Memorandum in Support (#31) were filed by Defendants Atkinson, Cessna, Kotcher, Morrissey and Phillips (Individual State Defendants), as well as the State of Illinois and Illinois State Police. On May 25, 2011, Defendants Walsh, Coffey, Ferriman, Goodwin, Herrig, Heuerman, Jones, Neeves, Quick, Schalber, Shumate, Vercler, Weston, Coleman, Cunningham, and Bolt (County Defendants) filed a Motion to Dismiss (#35) and a Memorandum in Support (#36).
August 18, 2011, Magistrate Judge David G. Bernthal filed a Report and Recommendation (#47). Judge Bernthal recommended that the Motion to Dismiss (#30) filed by the Individual State Defendants, the State of Illinois and the Illinois State Police be granted in part and denied in part. Judge Bernthal noted that Defendants argued that the claims made against the State of Illinois and Illinois State Police should be dismissed as a result of the Eleventh Amendment's bar on a suit against a state without the state's consent. Plaintiff conceded this point and asked leave to re plead Count I against only the Champaign County Sheriff. Judge Bernthal recommended that Plaintiff be allowed to do this. Judge Bernthal also recommended that the Individual State Defendants' request to dismiss Count II of the Complaint be denied, finding that Plaintiff's claim was sufficiently plausible and that Defendants were not entitled to qualified immunity at this stage of the proceedings. On August 26, 2011, the Individual State Defendants filed an Objection (#49) to the Report and Recommendation.
On September 6, 2011, this court entered an Order (#50) which accepted Judge Bernthal's Report and Recommendation (#47). This court granted Defendants' Motion to Dismiss with respect to Count I and Plaintiff was allowed fourteen days to file an amended complaint naming only the Champaign County Sheriff. Defendants' Motion was denied with respect to Count II.
On September 9, 2011, Plaintiff filed a First Amended Complaint (#53). Plaintiff named only the Champaign County Sheriff as a defendant in Count I and omitted the State of Illinois and the Illinois State Police as Defendants. The State of Illinois and the Illinois State Police were therefore terminated as parties in this case. In addition, Plaintiff omitted a request for punitive damages in Count I and, consistent with Judge Bernthal's July 22, 2011, text order, omitted allegations related to claims by the minor Plaintiffs and omitted Counts V and VI from her First Amended Complaint (#53).
On September 8, 2011, one day before Plaintiff filed her First Amended Complaint, Judge Bernthal entered a second Report and Recommendation (#52). Judge Bernthal recommended that the Motion to Dismiss (#35) filed by the County Defendants be denied. Judge Bernthal noted that the request that Counts V and VI be dismissed was moot because the court had already dismissed those counts without prejudice.
On September 22, 2011, the Individual State Defendants filed an Answer to the First Amended Complaint (#55). On October 6, 2011, the Individual State Defendants filed a Notice of Appeal (#56). The Individual State Defendants stated that they were appealing from this court's Order (#50) "which accepted the part of the report and recommendation" which recommended "denying the motion to dismiss filed by the Individual State Defendants based on the Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution and qualified immunity."
On October 7, 2011, the County Defendants filed a Motion to Stay Discovery Pending the Resolution of Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Based on Qualified Immunity (#59). The County Defendants also filed their Objections to Report and Recommendation (#60). On October 11, 2011, the Individual State Defendants filed a Motion to Stay Discovery (#61) and asked that discovery be stayed pending resolution of the Eleventh Amendment immunity issue pending in the Seventh Circuit.
On October 13, 2011, this court entered an Order (#63) and accepted Judge Bernthal's second Report and Recommendation (#52). This court noted that Plaintiff had filed a First Amended Complaint (#53) on September 9, 2011. This court stated that it had conducted a careful and thorough de novo review of Judge Bernthal's reasoning and Defendants' Objections and agreed with and accepted Judge Bernthal's well-reasoned Report and Recommendation. This court therefore denied the Motion to Dismiss (#35) filed by the County Defendants. This court further stated that the request to dismiss Counts V and VI was moot and the recommendation that Plaintiff's claim for punitive damages in Count I be stricken was also moot. This court pointed out that Plaintiff did not include a request for punitive damages in Count I of her First Amended Complaint so there was no need to strike the punitive damages claim.
This court now clarifies that it properly ruled on the County Defendants' Motion to Dismiss even though Plaintiff filed her First Amended Complaint prior to this court's ruling. This court recognizes that Rule 7.1(E) of the Local Rules of the Central District of Illinois provides that "[w]henever an amended pleading is filed, any motion attacking the original pleading will be deemed moot unless specifically revived by the moving party within 14 days after the amended pleading is served." In this case, however, Plaintiff was given leave to amend the complaint to rectify several easily corrected problems with the complaint. Almost all of the allegations in the First Amended Complaint were the same as the allegations in the original Complaint. The First Amended Complaint did not make any substantive changes in any of the allegations ...