United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
ALICIA SPEED, ET AL.
SHERIFF SID J. GAUTREAUX SHERIFF EAST BATON ROUGE PARISH, ET AL.
RICHARD L. BOURGEOIS, JR. UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
the Court are Sheriff Wydette Williams' Motion to Dismiss
Complaint and Amended Complaint (R. Docs. 48) and Sheriff Sid
J. Gautreaux's Motion to Dismiss Complaint and First
Amended and Supplemental Complaint. (R. Doc. 50). The motions
are opposed. (R. Doc. 51). Sheriff Gautreaux filed a Reply.
(R. Doc. 56).
before the Court is Plaintiffs' Motion to Continue. (R.
Doc. 52). Sheriff Gautreaux filed an opposition. (R. Doc. 54)
before the Court is Plaintiffs' Motion for Leave to File
Second Amended Complaint. (R. Doc. 58). The deadline for
filing an opposition has expired. LR 7(f).
November 16, 2018, Alicia Speed and Joe Ducre
(“Plaintiffs”) filed this action on behalf of
their deceased brother Brian Ducre (“Ducre”),
naming as defendants Sid J. Guatreaux in his official
capacity as Sheriff of East Baton Rouge Parish, and Wydette
Williams in his official capacity as Sheriff of East Carroll
Parish. (R. Doc. 1, “Compl.”). Plaintiffs seek
recovery under 28 U.S.C. § 1983 and the Americans with
Disabilities Act (“ADA”), 42 U.S.C. § 12181
et seq. (Compl. ¶ 2).
allege that Ducre was arrested by the East Baton Rouge Parish
Sheriff's Office on May 14, 2016 for reasons unknown to
Plaintiffs. (Compl. ¶ 4). Plaintiffs allege that Ducre
was “placed on a transport vehicle and driven to East
Carroll Parish Correction Facility” and then, some time
later, “transported to the local hospital to receive
medical attention.” (Compl. ¶ 6). Plaintiffs
allege that the next day he was again placed on a transport
vehicle, returned to East Baton Rouge Parish, and then
transported to a local hospital in Zachary, Louisiana, where
he died. (Compl. ¶ 7). Plaintiffs allege that the East
Baton Rouge Parish Coroner performed an autopsy on May 17,
2016 determining the cause of death to be homicide. (Compl.
¶ 8). Plaintiffs allege that the autopsy report was
signed on July 18, 2016, but was not made available to them
until May of 2017. (Compl. ¶ 8). Plaintiffs also allege
that they did not receive the death certificate until
“sometime after” it was filed on November 16,
2016, and that was the “initial date that the family
learned of the manner of death.” (Compl. ¶ 9).
appears that Plaintiffs are asserting that Ducre's
protected disability under the ADA was schizophrenia. (Compl.
¶ 4). Plaintiffs allege that Defendants violated
Ducre's “constitutional rights” by
“acting with deliberate indifference” to his
disability, falsely arresting him, and “failing to
recognize his condition and placing him in an unsafe
environment.” (Compl. ¶ 11). Plaintiffs further
allege that prior to the filing of this action, Sheriff
Gautreaux indicated the fatal injuries occurred in East
Carroll Parish and, conversely, Sheriff Williams indicated
the fatal injuries occurred in East Baton Rouge Parish.
(Compl. ¶ 10).
Court entered Plaintiffs' First Amended and Supplemental
Complaint (“Amended Complaint”) into the record
on April 15, 2019. (R. Doc. 41). The Amended Complaint adds
as defendants unidentified Louisiana State Troopers,
unidentified transportation companies and drivers, and
unidentified inmates. (R. Doc. 41 at 1). It also states that
Ducre “was allegedly beaten by an unknown inmate or
unknown inmates accompanying him” while in the custody
of the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office, the East
Carroll Parish Correctional Facility, or during transport.
(R. Doc. 41 at 2). The Amended Complaint asserts that the
driver of one of the unknown transportation companies
“committed breaches of alleged contracts to transport
inmate[s] in a safe condition.” (R. Doc. 41 at 2). The
Amended Complaint also asserts that the Louisiana State
Police “prematurely ended the investigation of Brian
Ducre's homicide and failed to disclose of its report and
deliver any suspects for possible indictments.” (R.
Doc. 41 at 3). Finally, the Amended Petition asserts that
Defendants violated Ducre's clearly established due
process, liberty interest, and equal protection rights under
the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
(R. Doc. 41 at 3).
April 30, 2019 and May 3, 2019, Sheriff Williams and Sheriff
Gautreaux, respectively, filed motions to dismiss the
Complaint and Amended Complaint on the basis that
Plaintiffs' claims are time barred, Plaintiffs failed to
state a claim against them under Section 1983, and Plaintiffs
failed to state a claim against them under the ADA. (R. Docs.
48, 50). In opposition, Plaintiffs argue that the doctrine of
contra non valenum precludes dismissal based on
prescription and that a ten-year prescriptive period applies
in light of their breach of contact allegations. (R. Doc.
51). In reply, Sheriff Guatreaux notes that Plaintiffs do not
raise any arguments in their opposition with respect to the
sufficiency of their Section 1983 and ADA claims. (R. Doc. 56
20, 2019, Plaintiffs filed a “Motion to Continue”
seeking the opportunity to conduct discovery pursuant to Rule
56(d) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for the
purposes of identifying all parties and factual information
to support their claims and to defeat dismissal. (R. Doc.
52). In opposition, Sheriff Gautreaux argues that the
defendants are seeking dismissal pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6),
which is based on the sufficiency of the allegations in the
pleadings, and not summary judgment pursuant to Rule 56. (R.
7, 2019, Plaintiffs filed their Motion for Leave to File
Second Amended Complaint. (R. Doc. 58). Plaintiffs state that
they are seeking amendment to “specifically name
Sheriff Gautreaux, in his official capacity as Sheriff of
East Baton Rogue Parish and to specifically name Sheriff
Wydette Williams, in his official capacity as Sheriff of East
Carroll Parish as defendants.” (R. Doc. 58 at 1).
Plaintiffs further seek to assert that they are seeking
“redress under the Americans with Disabilities
Act” based on Ducre's diagnosis of schizophrenia
“and other mental disabilities.” (R. Doc. 58 at