United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
RULING AND ORDER
A. JACKSON JUDGE
the Court is the Motion for Summary Judgment (Doc.
31) filed by the State of Louisiana through the
Department of Public Safety and Corrections and Trooper Erin
Williams. No. opposition was filed. For the reasons that
follow, the Motion (Doc. 31) is
U.S.C. § 1983 suit arises from a struggle between an
intoxicated man and a police officer. (Doc. 31-2 at
¶¶ 1-2). After drinking liquor for several hours,
Plaintiff Daniel Newton awoke at his father's home.
(Id.). Plaintiff began arguing with his father, and
someone called the police. (Id. at ¶ 5).
Deputies from the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriffs Office responded
to the call and removed Plaintiff from the home.
(Id. at ¶ 7).
that night, Louisiana State Trooper Erin Williams received a
dispatch call about a truck abandoned in a ditch.
(Id. at ¶ 9). Around 12:55 A.M., Trooper
Williams arrived on the scene and called a wrecker to
retrieve the truck. (Id. at ¶ 10). Plaintiff
arrived on the scene five minutes later. (Id. at
Trooper Williams's request, Plaintiff failed to present a
driver's license or proof of insurance. (Id. at
¶¶ 13-15). Because Trooper Williams smelled alcohol
on Plaintiffs breath, Trooper Williams gave Plaintiff a field
sobriety test. (Id. at ¶ 25). Plaintiff passed.
Trooper Williams told Plaintiff that he was going to call a
tow truck. (Id. at ¶ 17). Plaintiff became
upset and began yelling expletives at Trooper Williams.
(Id. at ¶¶ 18-23). After Plaintiff
threatened Trooper Williams and the tow-truck driver, Trooper
Williams detained Plaintiff. (Id. at ¶ 24). At
some point, Trooper Williams and Plaintiff began to fight.
(Id. at ¶ 34.). Trooper Williams eventually
brought Plaintiff to the ground, but Plaintiff resisted
Trooper Williams's attempts to cuff him. (Id. at
cuffing Plaintiff, Trooper Williams charged Plaintiff with
resisting arrest, driving without a license, careless
operation, and failure to carry insurance. (Id. at
¶ 43). Trooper Williams then drove Plaintiff to the
Tangipahoa Parish Jail. (Id. at 42). On the trip,
Plaintiff did not request medical treatment or say that he
was in pain. (Id. at ¶ 41).
officials released Plaintiff on his own recognizance.
(Id. at ¶ 47). After his release, Plaintiff
went to North Oaks Medical Center complaining of "being
assaulted by about 4-5 other men, a few hours ago."
(Id. at ¶ 49). Plaintiff does not recall
anything about his encounter with Trooper Williams.
(Id. at ¶ 51).
so, Plaintiff sued the Department of Public Safety and
Corrections (the "Department") and Trooper Williams
for violations of state law and § 1983. (Doc. 12).
Plaintiff alleges that Trooper Williams violated his
constitutional rights by using excessive force against him
and acting with deliberate indifference to his medical needs.
(Doc. 12 at ¶¶ 36, 53). Plaintiff also alleges
battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress
claims against Trooper Williams. (Id. at
¶¶ 59, 61). And Plaintiff alleges a
failure-to-train claim against the Department. (Id. at
Defendants move for summary judgment dismissing all
Plaintiffs remaining claims. (Doc. 31).
Court will enter summary judgment in Defendants' favor if
Defendants show that there is no genuine dispute as to any
material fact and that they are entitled to judgment as a
matter of law. Fed. R. CIV. P. 56(a). The Court cannot grant
summary judgment just because Defendants' motion is
unopposed; Defendants must point to the absence of a material
factual dispute. Hetzel v. Bethlehem Steel Corp., 50
F.3d 360, 362 n.3 (5th Cir. 1995). In deciding if they have
done so, the Court views facts and draws reasonable
inferences in Plaintiffs favor. Vann v. City of
Southaven, Miss.,884 F.3d 307, ...