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Selby v. Board of Trustees of Moraine Valley Community College

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division

February 20, 2018

RONALD SELBY, Plaintiff,
v.
BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF MORAINE VALLEY COMMUNITY COLLEGE, DISTRICT NO. 524, a/k/a MORAINE VALLEY COMMUNITY COLLEGE; FRANCISCO ARTEAGA, in his official and individual capacities; WILLIAM TOBIAS, in his official and individual capacities; and GENERAL MCARTHUR, in his official and individual capacities, Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          JEFFREY T. GILBERT MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Plaintiff Ronald Selby has sued Defendants Board of Trustees of Moraine Valley Community College, District No. 524, a/k/a Moraine Valley Community College; Francisco Arteaga; William Tobias; and General McArthur (collectively, "Defendants"). This matter is now before the Court on Plaintiffs Motion for Partial Summary Judgment [ECF No. 57] and Defendants' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment [ECF No. 52], For the reasons stated below, Plaintiffs Motion for Partial Summary Judgment [ECF No. 57] is denied and Defendants' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment [ECF No. 52] is granted.

         I. BACKGROUND

         A. Facts

         Moraine Valley Community College ("the College") is a community college located in the southwest suburbs of Chicago. Defendants' L.R. 56.1(a)(3) Statement of Uncontested Facts ("Defendants' SoF"), [ECF No. 53], ¶ 1; Plaintiffs Additional Statement of Undisputed Facts ("Plaintiffs Additional SoF"), [ECF No. 68], ¶ 2 at p. 9. Plaintiff Ronald Selby ("Selby") was an enrolled student at the College during the Fall 2014 semester, but he did not enroll for any classes in subsequent semesters. Plaintiffs Local Rule 56.1(a)(3) Statement of Undisputed Facts ("Plaintiffs SoF"), [ECF No. 59], ¶ 4; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No, 53], ¶ 2. Selby had an auditory processing disability that made it difficult for him to process information that he heard. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 5. The College knew about Selby's disability and accommodated him when he was a student. Id. Defendant Officer Francisco Arteaga ("Officer Arteaga") and Defendant Officer William Tobias ("Officer Tobias") are campus police officers employed by the College. Id. ¶¶ 2, 3; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶¶ 4, 5, 12; First Amended Complaint ("Complaint"), [ECF No. 44], ¶ 12 (alleging the College employed Officers Arteaga and Tobias); Defendant Moraine Valley Community College's Answer to Plaintiffs First Amended Complaint, [ECF No. 45], ¶ 12 (admitting the allegation); Defendant Arteaga's Answer to Plaintiffs First Amended Complaint, [ECF No. 47], ¶ 12 (same); Defendant Tobias' Answer to Plaintiffs First Amended Complaint, [ECF No. 48], ¶ 12 (same).

         On March 20, 2015, at 9:00 a.m., the College held a financial literacy workshop. Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 7. Some unknown number of days before the workshop, Selby received a letter from the College that said the workshop was mandatory if he wanted to obtain financial aid for a future semester. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 6; Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 1 at p. 8-9; Letter from Moraine Valley Community College to Ronald Selby ("Letter"), [ECF No. 54-6]. Selby decided to attend, and, on the day in question, made it to the campus a little more than one hour before the workshop was scheduled to begin. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 8. After taking care of some unrelated matters, Selby tried to make his way to the workshop, but he struggled to find the right room because of inaccurate information given to him in the letter he had received from the College and by two College employees who he encountered during the morning of the workshop, Id. ¶¶ 8-13; Letter, [ECF No. 54-6].

         Eventually, just a few minutes before the workshop was scheduled to begin, Selby walked into the College's Veterans Office, where he met Defendant General McArthur ("McArthur"). Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 14; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 10. McArthur was employed by the College as the student success coordinator and the veteran's coordinator. Defendants' SoF, [ECF No, 53], ¶ 3. Selby asked McArthur if he knew where the workshop was being held, Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 14, McArthur not only gave Selby the information he needed but also accompanied him to the right room, which was S117B in Building S. Id. ¶ 15; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 10; Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 4 at p. 9. As they made their way to the workshop, McArthur told Selby, "[Y]ou know, you are late." Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 15; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 10; Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 4 at p. 9, Selby informed McArthur that he had been given inaccurate information about the location of the workshop, and the pair continued on their way together. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 15; Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 4 at p. 9.

         The parties dispute whether McArthur also told Selby that, because of his late arrival, Selby could not attend the workshop and would have to reschedule. Plaintiffs Local Rule 56.1(b)(3) Response to Defendants' L.R. 56.1(a)(3) Statement of Uncontested Facts ("Plaintiffs Response to Defendants' SoF"), [ECF No. 68], ¶¶ 10, 12; Defendants' Response to Plaintiffs L.R. 56.1(a)(3) Statement of Uncontested Facts ("Defendants' Response to Plaintiffs SoF"), [ECF No. 65], ¶ 15; Defendants' Response to Plaintiffs Additional Statement of Undisputed Facts ("Defendants' Response to Plaintiffs Additional SoF"), [ECF No. 69], ¶ 4. The parties also disagree about whether there was a sign posted on the door to room SI 17B that said anyone who arrived more than 10 minutes late would have to reschedule. See Plaintiffs Response to Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶¶ 8, 11.

         Eventually, Selby and McArthur made it to room SI 17B. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 16; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 11. In a footnote in one of his briefs, Selby claims there is a factual dispute about whether he entered the room before the workshop began at 9:00 a.m. Plaintiffs Memorandum of Law in Support of Plaintiffs Partial Summary Judgment Motion ("Plaintiffs Opening Brief), [ECF No. 58], at 5 n.2. Selby's Local Rule 56.1 filings, though, do not support the existence of such a dispute. Selby's Local Rule 56.1(a)(3) Statement and Local Rule 56.1 (b)(3)(c) Statement are silent as to whether he entered the room before the presentation began. Defendants' Local Rule 56.1(a)(3) Statement contains a couple paragraphs indicating Selby was late. See, e.g., Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 11 ("When McArthur and Selby arrived at the classroom, McArthur saw that the presentation had already started . . . ."), ¶ 13 ("[Selby] walked into the presentation approximately fifteen (15) minutes after the presentation had started."). In responding to at least one of these paragraphs, Selby did not address, much less dispute, the temporal component of Defendants' statement. See Plaintiffs Response to Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 11. In response to another, Selby addressed the issue but he did not assert, or cite evidence showing, that he arrived early or on time. See Id. ¶ 13.[1] The Court, therefore, can and will deem admitted for the purposes of summary judgment Defendants' statement that Selby arrived some amount of time after the workshop began. See Curtis v. Costco Wholesale Corp., 807 F.3d 215, 218 (7th Cir. 2015) ("The non-moving party's failure . ., to cite any admissible evidence to support facts presented in response by the non-moving party render the facts presented by the moving part as undisputed.").

         After entering the workshop late, Selby signed an attendance sheet given to him by a College employee. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 16. Then he stood at the back of the room and listened to the presentation. Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 13. In the meantime, McArthur contacted the campus police to have Selby removed from the room. Id. ¶ 12. The campus police dispatch sent a call out saying that a student was refusing to leave room SI 17B, Id. ¶ 14; see also Deposition of Francisco Arteaga, [ECF No. 54-3], at 26.

         Officers Arteaga and Tobias heard the call over their radios and responded to it. Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶¶ 4, 5 14; see also Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶¶ 18-19. The Officers arrived at ¶ 117B separately. Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 15. Officer Arteaga got there first, reaching S1I7B within 5 minutes of McArthur's call to dispatch. Id. ¶ 12. Officer Arteaga met with McArthur outside the room. Id. ¶ 15; Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No, 68], ¶ 6 at p. 9. At that time, Officer Arteaga knew McArthur was not the instructor for the workshop, and he did not know if McArthur was associated with the workshop in any way. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 52; Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 8 at p. 10. McArthur informed Officer Arteaga of the following: a student arrived late, McArthur had told the student to leave the room because he arrived late, and the student did not comply. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 20; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 15; Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 6 at p. 9. McArthur then identified Selby, who still was standing in the back of the room, as that student. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 20; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 15; Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 6 at p. 9.

         After McArthur provided this information, Officer Arteaga entered the room. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 21. The instructor, Joseph Scroggins, had not stopped his presentation when Selby entered the room, and he did not stop when Officer Artease entered the room, although some students looked back at Officer Arteaga. Id. ¶¶ 17, 21; Plaintiff s Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 7 at p. 10. Officer Arteaga made contact with Selby and asked him to leave the room, but Selby did not comply. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 22. Eventually, Officer Tobias made it to S117B, saw Officer Arteaga trying to speak with Selby, and went to stand nearby them. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶¶ 54-56; see also Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶¶ 16-17. At some point, the room was cleared of everyone except Selby. See Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No, 59], ¶ 34 (Only Officer Arteaga was present at that time.); Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 16 (Both officers were present when SI 17B was cleared.).

         The Officers ordered Selby to leave the room and warned that he would be arrested for criminal trespass if he did not comply, but Selby still did not leave. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶¶ 25, 37, 56, 58-59; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 17-18; see also Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶¶ 22, 31 (indicating Officer Arteaga also ordered Selby to leave before emptying the room and before Officer Tobias arrived).[2] When told he was not supposed to be there, Selby asked, "Who told you I'm not supposed to be here?" Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 19; Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 23. The parties dispute whether Selby responded to the officers in other ways, including by identifying himself and asking why he was required to leave. Compare Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 17, 19; Defendants' Response to Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 65], ¶ 23 with Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 25; Plaintiffs Response to Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶¶ 17-18. It is undisputed, though, that Selby did not voluntarily leave SI 17B. Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶¶ 18, 20.

         Faced with Selby's noncompliance, Officers Arteaga and Tobias arrested Selby, handcuffed him, and took him to the campus police station, where he was put in a holding cell. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶¶ 27-30. The parties dispute exactly what occurred during the arrest, including what physical movements Selby made and what force the Officers used, and what happened at the campus police station. See, e.g. Plaintiffs Response to Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 21; Defendants' Response to Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 65], ¶¶ 26-30, 45. None of these factual disputes is material to the motions now before the Court.

         Selby was charged with criminal trespass to property, disorderly conduct, and resisting a peace officer. Plaintiffs SoF, [ECF No. 59], ¶ 51; Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶ 23. Officer Arteaga signed the criminal complaints for criminal trespass and resisting a peace office, and McArthur signed the one for disorderly conduct, Defendants' SoF, [ECF No. 53], ¶¶ 24-25. In exchange for a deferred prosecution agreement, Selby agreed to perform 80 hours of community service and to have no further contact with the College. Id. ¶¶ 27-28. On June 4, 2015, Selby appeared in court for a proceeding in his criminal case. Id. ¶ 29. At this hearing, the State's Attorney represented to the court that Selby had completed the required community service and agreed to dismiss the case. Id. The charges against Selby were stricken with leave to reinstate. Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 68], ¶ 10 at p. 10. After the dismissal, Selby demanded a speedy trial. See Defendants' Response to Plaintiffs Additional SoF, [ECF No. 69], ¶ 10.

         B. Procedural History

         On August 9, 2017, Selby filed his First Amended Complaint in this case. The Complaint contains eight counts. In Count I, Selby alleges a claim against Officer Arteaga, Officer Tobias, and McArthur under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for violating Selby's constitutional rights. Complaint, [ECF No. 44], ¶¶ 33-34. In Counts III through VI, Selby alleges claims under Illinois law against Officers Arteaga and Tobias for assault (Count III), battery (Count IV), false imprisonment (Count V), and false arrest (Count VI). Id. ¶¶ 45-52. In Count VII, Selby alleges a claim against Officer Arteaga, McArthur, and Defendant Board of Trustees of Moraine Valley Community College, District No. 524, a/k/a Moraine Valley Community College ("the Board of Trustees") for malicious prosecution. Id. ¶¶ 53-57. Finally, in Counts II and VIII, Selby alleges claims against the Board of Trustees under 42 U.S.C, § 1983 for maintaining several policies, practices, or customs that exhibited deliberate indifference to students' constitutional rights (Count II) and for respondeat superior liability arising out of the assault, battery, and false imprisonment allegedly committed by Officers Arteaga and Tobias (Count VIII).

         As noted above, both sides have filed motions for partial summary judgment, Selby's Motion is limited to the § 1983 false arrest claim against Officers Arteaga and Tobias. Plaintiffs Motion for Partial Summary Judgment, [ECF No. 57], at 1. Defendants' Motion is not so narrow. McArthur seeks summary judgment on the § 1983 false arrest and excessive force claims alleged in Count I. Defendants' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment, [ECF No. 52], ¶ 1. Officers Arteaga and Tobias challenge the false arrest claims alleged in Counts I and VI and the false imprisonment claim alleged in Count V. Id. ¶¶ 2, 3. Finally, Officer Arteaga, McArthur, and the Board of Trustees seek summary judgment on the malicious prosecution claim alleged in Count VII. Id. ¶ 4.

         II. LEGAL STANDARD

         Summary judgment is proper when "the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law." Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c). A genuine issue of material fact exists if "the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party." Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). The party seeking summary judgment has the burden of establishing the lack of any genuine issue of material fact. See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, All U.S. 317, 323(1986).

         In determining whether there is a genuine issue of fact, a district court "must construe the facts and draw all reasonable inferences in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party." Foley v. City of Lafayette,359 F.3d 925, 928 (7th Cir. 2004). And the nonmoving party must go beyond the pleadings and "set forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial." Anderson, 477 U.S. at 250, The nonmoving party "must do more than simply show that there is some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts." Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co., Ltd. v. Zenith Radio Corp.,475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986). In other words, the "mere existence of a scintilla of evidence in support of the ...


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