United States District Court, D. Connecticut
RULING ON THE PLAINTIFF'S MOTIONS FOR PRELIMINARY
INJUNCTIVE AND MONETARY RELIEF AND MOTION FOR HEARING (DKT.
NOS. 36, 40, 42, 43)
VANESSA L. BRYANT, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
August 21, 2018, the plaintiff, Glen Alan Sharkany, an inmate
currently confined at the Garner Correctional Institution in
Newtown, Connecticut, filed a complaint pro se
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Akeem Bryce, a
Norwalk police officer, in his individual and official
capacity. Compl. (Dkt. No. 1). The plaintiff claims that the
defendant falsely arrested him in Norwalk on June 28, 2018
and subjected him to excessive force during the arrest, in
violation of his Fourth Amendment protection against
unreasonable searches and seizures. See id.; Ruling
on Mot. for More Definite Statement and Mot. to Strike
(“Ruling on Mot. to Strike”) (Dkt. No. 30) 4-5.
Court permitted his Fourth Amendment excessive force and
state law assault claims to proceed against the defendant but
dismissed his false arrest claim because, at the time, his
criminal case stemming from the arrest in Norwalk was still
pending. See Ruling on Mot. to Strike at 5. This
Court has since vacated its dismissal of the false arrest
claim based on the plaintiff's new allegation that the
charges filed against him from his June 28, 2018 arrest were
dismissed. See Order No. 35. The defendant filed an
amended answer to the complaint on May 20, 2019. Def.'s
Am. Answer (Dkt. No. 38).
before this Court are three motions for preliminary
injunctive and monetary relief (Dkt. Nos. 36, 40, 42) and a
motion for an “in-person court hearing” (Dkt. No.
43). Specifically, the plaintiff seeks a court-ordered
monetary judgment based on the dismissal of his criminal
charges, which he claims establishes that he was falsely
arrested. In the second motion (Dkt. No. 40), the plaintiff
is once again requesting injunctive relief in the form of an
order that the defendant be placed in federal prison for his
conduct. The defendant has objected to the plaintiff's
motions on the grounds that (1) the dismissal of the criminal
charges does not, alone, establish a Fourth Amendment false
arrest claim, and (2) the plaintiff's request for
injunctive relief is not warranted. The Court agrees with the
on the Court's review of his motions, the plaintiff
contends that the dismissal of the criminal charges from his
June 28, 2018 arrest proves his false arrest claim and
entitles him to relief. While the Court agrees that a
favorable termination of the charges is a necessary element
of a Fourth Amendment false arrest claim, it does, not alone,
entitle a claimant to relief. In order to prevail on a Fourth
Amendment false arrest claim, the plaintiff must prove that
“(1) the defendant initiated or continued criminal
proceedings against [him]; (2) the criminal proceeding
terminated in [his] favor . . . (3) the defendant acted
without probable cause; and (4) the defendant acted with
malice.” Conroy v. Caron, 275 F.Supp.3d 328,
348 (D. Conn. 2017) (quoting Roberts v. Babkiewicz,
582 F.3d 418, 420 (2d Cir. 2009)). In this case, the
plaintiff has not yet provided any evidence showing that the
defendant lacked probable cause to arrest him or acted with
malice during the arrest. The mere fact that the charges
stemming from that arrest were later dismissed is not, alone,
dispositive of the plaintiff's Fourth Amendment claim.
See Michigan v. DeFillippo, 443 U.S. 31, 36 (1979)
(“[T]he mere fact that the suspect is later acquitted
of the offense for which he is arrested is irrelevant to the
validity of the arrest”). Therefore, the
plaintiff's request for monetary relief on his Fourth
Amendment false arrest claims is denied at this time.
respect to the plaintiff's request for preliminary
injunctive relief, this Court has already ruled that it
cannot order criminal prosecution or other disciplinary
action against the defendant as a form of injunctive relief.
See Ruling on Mot. to Strike at 7 (citing Osuch
v. Gregory, 303 F.Supp.2d 189, 194 (D. Conn. 2004)). The
Court cannot grant a request for injunctive relief that
concerns a past constitutional violation by a state entity.
See Inside Connect, Inc. v. Fischer, Case No.
13-cv-1138 (CS) 2014 WL 2933221, at *7 (S.D.N.Y. June 30,
2014) (Eleventh Amendment barred relief when the challenged
policy had been amended). Furthermore, injunctive relief is
unavailable where a plaintiff is no longer confined at the
facility where the alleged constitutional violations occurred
unless there is an indication from the allegations that the
alleged violations are capable of repetition. See Prims
v. Coughlin, 76 F.3d 504, 506 (2d Cir. 1996) (transfer
of prisoner out of facility generally moots claims for
injunctive relief against facility officials); City of
Los Angeles v. Lyons, 461 U.S. 95, 109 (1983) (holding
that if the plaintiff “has made no showing that he is
realistically threatened by a repetition of [the challenged
action] . . . he has not met the requirements for seeking an
injunction in a federal court.”). Thus, Plaintiff's
request for injunctive relief remains dismissed.
the Court reminds the plaintiff that any motion filed must
set forth legal grounds for the requested court order.
See Fed. R. Civ. P. 7(b)(1). Furthermore, motions to
reconsider previous decisions shall generally be granted only
if the party making the motion “can point to
controlling decisions or data that the court overlooked in
the initial decision or order.” D. Conn. Local R.
7(c)(1). The Court will not entertain frivolous filings which
do not meet these preliminary requirements. Failure to comply
with these standards may result in summary denial or
dismissal and possibly monetary sanctions, ineligibility for
in forma pauperis status, and an order enjoining
Plaintiff from filing without Court approval. See
Chambers v. NASCO, Inc., 501 U.S. 32, 33 (1991)
(authority to enjoin filing and impose monetary sanctions
stems from Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 11 and the Federal
courts' “inherent power to manage their own
proceedings and to control the conduct of those who appear
before them.”); Barefoot v. Estelle, 463 U.S.
880, 894 (1983) (federal courts may summarily dismiss any
habeas petition that appears legally insufficient on its
face); Gurary v. Nu-Tech Bio-Med, Inc., 303 F.3d
212, 220-21 (2d Cir. 2002) (courts may summarily dismiss
claims that are frivolous).
on the foregoing, the plaintiff's motions for preliminary
injunctive and monetary relief (Dkt. Nos. 36, 40, 42) and
motion for “an ...