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Lomas v. Parish of Ascension

United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana

September 7, 2017




         Before the Court is the Second Motion for Summary Judgment (Doc. 13)[1]filed by Sheriff Jeff Wiley and Deputy Seth Boudreaux of the Ascension Sheriffs Office ("Defendants"), seeking an order dismissing Lionel Loraas' ("Plaintiff') claims in their entirety. Plaintiff opposes this motion. (Doc. 14). For reasons explained fully herein, the Motion is GRANTED IN PART in so far as it seeks dismissal of the federal claims. The remaining state law claims are REMANDED to the 23rd Judicial District Court, Ascension Parish, Louisiana.

         I. BACKGROUND

         The undisputed facts in the light most favorable to Plaintiff are as follows, unless otherwise noted. On August 25, 2015, Ms. Dara Holloway[2] called the Ascension Parish Sheriffs Office to report that Plaintiff, her estranged husband, had violated a domestic abuse protective order against her. (Doc. 13-4 ¶ 1-2). At 8:47 PM, in response to her complaint, Deputy Seth Boudreaux was dispatched to Ms. Holloway's grandmother's home located at 40158 Germany Road in Gonzalez, Louisiana, where Ms. Holloway was located. (Docs. 13-3 at p. 7 and 13-4 at ¶¶ 1-2, 7). After arriving, Ms. Holloway told Deputy Boudreaux that she had a protective order against Plaintiff. (Doc. 13-4 ¶ 3). Deputy Boudreaux radioed the Sheriffs Office and confirmed the existence and scope of the protective order. Id. at ¶ 4. Ms. Holloway told Deputy Boudreaux that she obtained the protective order against Plaintiff because he had made threats to harm her in the past, including stating that he was going to kill her. Id. at ¶ 5.

         Ms. Holloway reported that at around 6:00 PM, while at her grandmother's house, she saw Plaintiffs 2015 Chevrolet truck drive back and forth in front of the house, and at that time her car was parked in her grandmother's driveway and would have been visible to the driver of the truck. Id. at ¶ 9. She also reported that the truck backed into a private driveway on the opposite side of Germany Road from her grandmother's house, where it stopped for a few minutes before driving away. Id. She also told Deputy Boudreaux that her children had seen Plaintiff coming from school on Germany Road.[3] (Doc. 13-3 at p. 28).

         Ms. Holloway provided Deputy Boudreaux with a copy of the protective order, issued by a Louisiana state court, which she had obtained against Plaintiff. (Doc. 13- 4 ¶ 6). It ordered Plaintiff:

• "NOT TO abuse, harass, stalk, follow, track, monitor, or threaten" Ms. Holloway "in any manner whatsoever." . "NOT TO go within 100 feet" of Ms. Holloway.
• "NOT TO go within 100 yards" of Ms. Holloway's home, located at 40238 Germany Road in Gonzalez, Louisiana.
• "TO STAY AWAY from . .. Central Primary and [East Ascension High School], [in] Gonzalez, Louisiana. (Doc. 13-5 at pp. 2-3).

         Ms. Holloway obtained the protective order on August 20, 2016, and it was effective through February 10, 2016. Id. at p. 1.

         According to Deputy Boudreaux, he then tried to speak with Plaintiff at his home, but when he arrived no one was there. (Doc. 13-4 at ¶ 12). He then called Plaintiff, but no one answered the phone. (Doc. 13-4 at ¶ 12). Plaintiff disputes that Deputy Boudreaux ever attempted to contact him. (Doc. 14-1 ¶ 7).

         Deputy Boudreaux then submitted an application for a warrant to arrest Plaintiff for violating the protective order. (Doc. 13-4 at ¶ 13). On August 26, 2015, a state court judge issued a warrant for Plaintiffs arrest. Id. On October 1, 2015, other members of the Ascension Parish Sheriffs Office arrested Plaintiff at his work. (Doc. 13-3 at pp. 15-17). He was charged with violating a protective order under La. R.S. 14:79, Id. at p. 17, and he was released on bail the next day, (Doc. 1. ¶ 15). On March 16, 2016, the District Attorney dismissed the charge because Plaintiff provided evidence that he was out of the country on a cruise the day that Ms. Holloway complained that she saw his truck driving back and forth in front of her grandmother's house. (Docs. 1 at ¶ 17 and 13-2 at ¶ 16).

         Plaintiff then filed suit against Deputy Boudreaux, the Parish of Ascension, and Sheriff Jeffrey Wiley. (Doc. 1). Plaintiff brought claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for false arrest, false imprisonment, and malicious prosecution. Id. at ¶ 19. Plaintiff also brought state law defamation and negligence claims. Id. at ΒΆΒΆ 22, 25. On November 18, 2016, the Court granted Plaintiffs motion to voluntarily dismiss the claims it brought against Parish of Ascension. (Doc. 9). On January 25, 2017, Sheriff Boudreaux and Deputy Wiley filed a Motion for Summary Judgment. ...

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