United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Alexandria Division
H.L. PEREZ-MONTES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
the Court are two Motions for Summary Judgment (Doc. 46)
(Doc. 48) filed by Defendants the Town of Woodworth
(“the Town”) and Kyle McClain
“Defendants”). The motions are unopposed. Because
there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact, summary
judgment is GRANTED. And because Hudson's claim under 42
U.S.C. §1983 was frivolous, Defendants are entitled to a
reasonable attorney's fee.
February 9, 2017, Plaintiff Jeremy Hudson
(“Hudson”) filed this action against Defendants.
(Doc. 1-1, p. 1). Hudson alleges that McClain wrongfully
searched his vehicle, threw his license on the ground, spit
on his license, and threatened him. (Doc. 1-1, p. 2). Hudson
claims that: (1) both Defendants violated La. Civ. Code art.
2315, La. Civ. Code art. 2316, 42 U.S.C. §1343, 42
U.S.C. § 1983, and the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments
of the Constitution; and (2) the Town further violated La.
Civ. Code art. 2317 and La. Civ. Code art. 2320. (Doc. 17, p.
served Hudson with requests for admission. (Doc. 36-3, p. 4).
Defendants requested Hudson to admit that: (1) the factual
allegations of ¶ 7, ¶ 11, and ¶ 12 of the
Complaint were a fabrication; (2) Hudson had no claim under La.
Civ. Code. art. 2317, 42 U.S.C. §1343, or common law;
and (3) Hudson had no claim for punitive damages against the
Town. (Doc. 36-3, p.1-3). Hudson did not respond to the
requests. (Doc. 36, p. 1). By Memorandum Order (Doc. 43), the
Court found Hudson's failure to respond constituted
admissions as a matter of law. (Doc. 43, p.2). Hudson did not
move to withdraw or amend his admissions.
then filed the Motions for Summary Judgment (Doc. 46) (Doc.
48). Defendants seek summary judgment and an award of
attorney's fee. (Doc. 46, p.1) (Doc. 48, p.1). Hudson did
not oppose the motions.
Law and Analysis
Standards governing the Motion for Summary
should grant summary judgment if a movant shows that
“there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact
and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of
law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56. “[T]he substantive law
will identify which facts are material.” Anderson
v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). A
genuine dispute of material fact exists if “a
reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving
party.” Id. In deciding a motion for summary
judgment, a court must decide all inferences in the light
most favorable to the non-movant. See Walker v. Sears,
Roebuck & Co., 853 F.2d 355, 358 (5th Cir. 1988).
Standards governing the Motion for Attorney's
42 U.S.C. §1988(b) provides that “in any action to
enforce . . . [42 U.S.C. §]1983, . . . the court, in its
discretion, may allow the prevailing party, other than the
United States, a reasonable attorney's fee as part of the
costs.” 42 U.S.C. §1988(b). “A prevailing
defendant is entitled to fees only if the plaintiff's
underlying claim is frivolous, unreasonable, or
groundless.” Myers v. City of West Monroe, 211
F.3d 289, 292 (5th Cir. 2000). In determining whether a suit
is frivolous, a court considers factors such as whether the
plaintiff established a prima facie case, whether the
defendant offered to settle, and whether the court held a
full trial. Id.
There is no genuine dispute of material
matter is admitted unless, within 30 days after being served,
the party to whom the request is directed serves on the
requesting party a written answer or objection addressed to
the matter and signed by the party or its attorney.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 36(a)(3). The admission is “conclusively
established unless the court, on motion, permits the
admission to be withdrawn or amended.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
36(b). Here, Defendants served Hudson with their requests for