United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lake Charles Division
D. CAIN, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the court is a Motion for Summary Judgment [doc. 20] filed by
defendants Joshua Ewing and Princeton Jackson, in response to
the pro se civil rights complaint filed in this
court by Anastasia Sinegal. Sinegal has not responded to the
motion and her time for doing so has passed. Accordingly, the
motion is regarded as unopposed and is now ripe for review.
suit arises from Sinegal's complaints about her treatment
at Golden Nugget Casino in Lake Charles, Louisiana, on or
about August 31, 2017. Specifically, Sinegal alleges that she
was wrongfully ordered to leave the casino after complaining
that the slot machines were rigged. When she refused to
leave, she asserts, Lake Charles Police Department officers
Joshua Ewing and Princeton Jackson arrested her at the
casino's behest and used excessive force to subdue her.
See doc. 1. Sinegal filed suit in this court under
42 U.S.C. § 1983 and Louisiana tort law against Golden
Nugget, LLC; Golden Nugget security supervisor Mallory
Bellard; the Lake Charles Police Department
("LCPD"); former LCPD Chief of Police Donald Dixon;
and LCPD officers Ewing and Jackson.
defendants' motions, the court dismissed all claims
except those brought against Ewing and Jackson for (1)
assault and battery under Louisiana tort law and (2)
excessive force under § 1983. Docs. 16, 17. Ewing and
Jackson now move for summary judgment on the remaining
claims, asserting that their use of force against Sinegal was
justified under the circumstances to overcome her resistance
to a lawful arrest. Doc. 20; doc. 20, att. 1. They also
assert that they are entitled to qualified immunity because
their actions were objectively reasonable. Id.
Sinegal, who is still unrepresented in this matter, has filed
no response. Under the court's Notice of Motion Setting
[doc. 21], her time for doing so has passed and so the
summary judgment motion is regarded as unopposed.
Summary Judgment Standard
should grant a motion for summary judgment when the 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. The party moving for
summary judgment is initially responsible for identifying
portions of pleadings and discovery that show the lack of a
genuine issue of material fact. Tubacex, Inc. v. M/V
Risan, 45 F.3d 951, 954 (5th Cir. 1995). The court must
deny the motion for summary judgment if the movant fails to
meet this burden. Id.
movant makes this showing, however, the burden then shifts to
the non-moving party to "set forth specific facts
showing that there is a genuine issue for trial."
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., Ml U.S. 242, 248
(1986) (quotations omitted). This requires more than mere
allegations or denials of the adverse party's pleadings.
Instead, the nonmovant must submit "significant
probative evidence" in support of his claim. State
Farm Life Ins. Co. v. Gutterman, 896 F.2d 116, 118 (5th
Cir. 1990). "If the evidence is merely colorable, or is
not significantly probative, summary judgment may be
granted." Anderson, Ml U.S. at 249 (citations
may not make credibility determinations or weigh the evidence
in ruling on a motion for summary judgment. Reeves v.
Sanderson Plumbing Prods., Inc., 530 U.S. 133, 150
(2000). The court is also required to view all evidence in
the light most favorable to the non-moving party and draw all
reasonable inferences in that party's favor. Clift v.
Clift, 210 F.3d 268, 270 (5th Cir. 2000). Under this
standard, a genuine issue of material fact exists if a
reasonable trier of fact could render a verdict for the
nonmoving party. Brumfleld v. Rollins, 551 F.3d 322,
326 (5th Cir. 2008). When the motion is unopposed, the moving
party retains its burden of showing that there is no genuine
issue of material fact. Hetzel v. Bethlehem Steel
Corp., 50 F.3d 360, 362 (5th Cir. 1995). Under the
court's local rules, however, failure to file an
opposition means that the moving party's statement of
uncontested material facts is deemed admitted. Local Rule