February 8, 2017
from the United States District Court for the Northern
District of Illinois, Eastern Division. No. l:16-cv-03636 -
Sharon Johnson Coleman, Judge.
Wood, Chief Judge, Flaum, Circuit Judge, and Conley, Chief
District Judge. [*]
Jakupovic was charged in Lake County, Illinois with telephone
harassment. Before trial, the state court ordered that
Jakupovic first be detained and then released on electronic
surveillance. Jakupovic alleges that various state officials
acted unlawfully in refusing to release him on electronic
surveillance because he lacked a Lake County residence. The
district court dismissed Jakupovic's claims with
prejudice. We conclude the claims are jurisdictionally barred
and vacate and remand with instructions to dismiss without
resided in Cook County Illinois. In September 2015,
Jakupovic's then-girlfriend filed a domestic battery
report against him in Cook County. Around the same time, the
girlfriend's mother filed a telephone harassment report
against Jakupovic in Lake County. On September 25, the State
charged Jakupovic with telephone harassment in Lake County.
The trial court released Jakupovic after his brother posted
bond, and, on October 22, Jakupovic pled not guilty. The
trial court ordered that Jakupovic undergo an Ontario
Domestic Assault Risk Assessment ("ODARA"),
pursuant to 725 Ill.Comp.Stat. 5/110-5(f). On November 17,
the trial court reviewed the ODARA report and ordered that
Jakupovic first be taken into custody and then placed under
pre-trial electronic surveillance.
Lake County Sheriff's Department did not release
Jakupovic under electronic surveillance. As alleged, the
department required pre-trial detainees to have a Lake County
residence in order to be monitored electronically. Lacking
such a residence, Jakupovic failed to meet this condition.
The next day, on November 18, Jakupovic filed an emergency
motion, arguing that the electronic monitoring condition on
his bond could not be satisfied because he was not a resident
of Lake County, and that, as a result, he could be subject to
indefinite custody. The trial court denied Jakupovic's
motion. It then refused to reconsider the order, concluding
that having a Lake County residence for the purposes of
electronic monitoring was one of the conditions of
Jakupovic's bond and his inability to meet that condition
was insufficient grounds for reconsideration. So the Lake
County Sheriff's Department continued to detain
Jakupovic. Shortly thereafter, Jakupovic filed a motion to
modify his bond conditions. The trial court scheduled a
hearing for November 25, but Jakupovic pled guilty on
November 23. Jakupovic did not file any appeals in the state
March 2016, Jakupovic sued Mark Curran (Lake County Sheriff
and Director of the Lake County Jail), Terrence Barrett (the
jail's Pretrial Unit Manager), Christine Hecker (Lake
County's Principal Probation Officer), and Joseph Fusz (a
Lake County Assistant State's Attorney) under 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. Jakupovic alleged that his six-day detainment
violated the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments and constituted
false imprisonment under Illinois law. The district court
granted defendants-appellees' motion to dismiss
Jakupovic's complaint with prejudice pursuant to Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). This appeal followed.
review a district court's grant of a motion to dismiss de
novo. Volling v. Kurtz Paramedic Sews., Inc., 840
F.3d 378, 382 (7th Cir. 2016) (citation omitted). Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) permits a motion to dismiss
a complaint for failure to state a claim upon which relief
can be granted. Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). "To properly
state a claim, a plaintiff's complaint must contain
allegations that plausibly suggest that the plaintiff has a
right to relief, raising that possibility above a speculative
level." Kubiak v. City of Chi., 810 F.3d 476,
480 (7th Cir.), cert, denied sub nom. Kubiak v. City of
Chi., Ill. 137 S.Ct. 491 (2016) (citation and internal
quotation marks omitted). "We accept as true all of the
well-pleaded facts in the complaint and draw all reasonable
inferences in favor of [appellants]." Id. at
480-81 (citation omitted).
are required to consider subject-matter jurisdiction as the
first question in every case, and we must dismiss this suit
if such jurisdiction is lacking." Aljabri v.
Holder, 745 F.3d 816, 818 (7th Cir. 2014) (citing
III. v. City of Chi., 137 F.3d 474, 478 (7th Cir.
1998); Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(h)(3)). We conclude that, under the
Rooker-Feldman doctrine, we have no jurisdiction
here. See Rooker v. Fid. Tr. Co., 263 U.S. 413,
415-16 (1923); B.C. Cir. v. Feldman, 460 U.S. 462,
486 (1983). Simply put:
Lower federal courts are not vested with appellate authority
over state courts. The Rooker-Feldman doctrine
prevents lower federal courts from exercising jurisdiction
over cases brought by state court losers challenging state
court judgments rendered before the district court
proceedings commenced. The rationale for the doctrine is that
no matter how wrong a state court judgment may be under
federal law, only the Supreme Court of the United States has
jurisdiction to review it.
Sykes v. Cook Cty. Cir. Ct. Prob. Div., 837 F.3d
736, 741-42 (7th Cir. 2016) (citations omitted); see also
Kelley v. Med-1 Sols., LLC,548 F.3d 600, 603 (7th Cir.
2008) ("A state litigant seeking review of a state court
judgment must follow the appellate process through the state
court system and then directly to the United States Supreme
Court.") (citation omitted). The initial inquiry, then,
"is whether the federal plaintiff seeks to set aside a
state court judgment or whether he is, in fact, presenting an
independent claim." Taylor v. Fed. Nat'l Mortg.
Ass'n,374 F.3d 529, 532 (7th Cir. 2004) (citation
and internal quotation marks omitted). To make this
determination, we ask ...