United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
John V. Norris, Plaintiff,
Officer Bartunek, Defendant,
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Jeffrey T. Gilbert Magistrate Judge.
John Norris brought this pro se civil rights action
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Will County Deputy
Sheriff Brett Bartunek. Norris alleges that Bartunek
improperly seized him for speeding and then "falsely
cited" him for that offense. A screening order allowed
Norris to proceed with a Fourth Amendment unlawful seizure
claim and state law claims of false imprisonment and
malicious prosecution. (ECF No. 5.) Pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 636(c) and Local Rule 73.1, the parties have consented
to the jurisdiction of a United States Magistrate Judge for
all proceedings, including entry of final judgment. (ECF No.
41.) Bartunek's motion to strike portions of Norris'
statement of facts (incorporated in Bartunek's reply, ECF
No. 80) and motion for summary judgment (ECF No. 52) are now
before the Court. For the reasons discussed below,
Bartunek's motions to strike and for summary judgment are
A. Bartunek's Motion to Strike
Bartunek's reply in support of his motion for summary
judgment, he seeks to strike many of Norris' statements
of fact-specifically, Norris' repeated assertions that he
was traveling at 45 mph-because they are "not supported
by documentary evidence." As the motion to strike is
intertwined with the merits of the summary judgment motion,
it is discussed more fully below. For purposes of summarizing
the facts, however, the Court notes that the only so-called
"documentary evidence" about Norris' speed is
the ticket he received, which appears to reflect
Bartunek's purported belief that Norris was traveling at
a rate of 55 mph. Both Norris and Bartunek also have offered
their own views about the events on the night of the traffic
stop. To the extent that these statements are self-serving,
whether proffered by Norris or Bartunek, they are
nevertheless admissible because they are based on personal
knowledge. See, e.g., Johnson v. Advocate Health &
Hosps. Corp., No. 14 CV 8141, 2016 WL 5871489, at *1
(N.D. 111. Oct. 7, 2016) (citing Montgomery v. Am.
Airlines, Inc., 626 F.3d 382, 389 (7th Cir. 2010)
("Uncorroborated, self-serving testimony disputes a
material fact only if it is based on personal knowledge or
firsthand experience")). Admissible evidence about
Norris' speed thus is not limited to the traffic ticket
issued by Bartunek but also includes Norris' statements
about the speed he was traveling when he was ticketed.
also argues that a driver's denial that he was speeding
is insufficient to create a material issue of disputed fact.
ECF No. 81, Def.'s Resp. to PL's Facts, at ¶ 5
In support, he cites Jones v. City of Elkhart, Ind.,
121 F.3d 1107, 1114 (7th Cir. 2013). Jones is
distinguishable because the plaintiff in that case offered
only habit evidence (his contention that he always obeyed the
speed limit on the stretch of road at issue) to support his
denial that he was speeding. In contrast, as discussed below,
Norris has pointed to evidence that, when construed
liberally, suggests a specific reason for his position that
he was traveling at 45 mph. Thus, the motion to strike is
Local Rule 56.1
is an experienced pro se litigator. He has filed 14
federal civil rights lawsuits in this District, three federal
civil rights lawsuits in the Central District of Illinois,
and (according to his disclosures) 14 state court lawsuits.
See Norris v. Jewel-Osco, Case No. 16 C 8819, ECF
Nos. 1 and 5 (N.D. 111.) (Durkin, J.). Norris filed numerous
documents in opposition to Bartunek's motion for summary
• A "reply" (ECF No. 67) to the numbered
paragraphs in Bartunek's motion for summary judgment;
• A "reply" (ECF No. 68) to Bartunek's
memorandum supporting the motion for summary judgment;
• A statement of additional facts (ECF No. 69) that is
captioned "Plaintiffs reply to Defendant's L.R. 56.1
statement of material facts;"
• An affidavit (ECF No. 70);
• A "reply" (ECF No.71) opposing
Bartunek's affirmative defenses;
• Another longer "reply" (ECF No. 72) opposing
Bartunek's affirmative defenses; and
• "Plaintiffs Response to Defense's Cheating
Lies" (ECF No. 82), which the Court construes as a
second affidavit opposing summary judgment.
submissions are frequently repetitive. Moreover, although
Bartunek filed a notice outlining the steps necessary to
respond to a motion for summary judgment (ECF No. 55) as our
rules require in cases prosecuted by pro se litigants, Norris
did not submit a substantive response to Bartunek's
facts, as required by the local rules. See L.R.
56.1(b)(3) ("All material facts set forth in the
statement required of the moving party will be deemed to be
admitted unless controverted by the statement of the opposing
party"). Instead, ...