United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division
OPINION AND ORDER
S. VAN BOKKELEN, JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
matter is before the Court on:
1. State Defendants' Motion to Dismiss and Motion to
Strike [DE 26], filed on March 20, 2017;
2. Lake Station-affiliated Defendants' Motion to Dismiss
& Motion for Partial Summary Judgment & to Strike [DE
30], filed on March 20, 2017;
3. Defendants', John Buncich and Lake County Jail, Joint
Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint [DE 47], filed on
April 25, 2017;
4. Defendant Judge Gina Jones' Motion to Dismiss Pursuant
to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1) and (6) [DE 52],
filed on April 28, 2017;
5. Defendant, Donna Joiner's Motion to Dismiss [DE 60],
filed on June 23, 2017; and
6. Joint Motion for Summary Ruling by John Buncich and Lake
County Jail [DE 86], filed on December 5, 2019.
Sarah Covington,  pro se, filed a response to the first two
motions on April 17, 2017, and the Lake Station-affiliated
defendants filed a reply on April 24, 2017. No. other
responses or replies have been filed.
filed a seventy-some page complaint in which she sued more
than forty local, county, and state officials and entities,
as well as several private individuals, for claims arising
out of her arrest in February 2016 and the loss of custody of
her children. For the reasons stated below, that
complaint is dismissed.
Motion to Dismiss
purpose of a motion to dismiss pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) for
failure to state a claim is to test the sufficiency of the
pleading, not to decide the merits of the case. See
Gibson v. Chi., 910 F.2d 1510, 1520 (7th Cir. 1990). In
ruling on such a motion, the Court accepts as true all of the
well-pleaded facts alleged by the plaintiff and all
reasonable inferences that can be drawn therefrom. See
Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-56
(2007); see also Tamayo v. Blagojevich, 526 F.3d
1074, 1082 (7th Cir. 2008). To survive a 12(b)(6) motion to
dismiss for failure to state a claim, the complaint must
first comply with Rule 8(a) by providing “a short and
plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is
entitled to relief, ” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2), such that
the defendant is given “fair notice of what the . . .
claim is and the grounds upon which it rests.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555 (quoting Conley v.
Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 47 (1957)); see also Ashcroft
v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 677-78 (2009). Second, the
“complaint must contain sufficient factual matter,
accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.'” Iqbal, 556 U.S.
at 678 (citing Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570); see
also Tamayo, 526 F.3d at 1082.
Motion for Summary Judgment
motion for summary judgment must be granted “if the
pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and
admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any,
show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact
and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a
matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c). Rule 56(c) further
requires the entry of summary judgment, after adequate time
for discovery, against a party “who fails to make a
showing sufficient to establish the existence of an element
essential to that party's case, and on which that party
will bear the burden of proof at trial.” Celotex
Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986).
seeking summary judgment bears the initial responsibility of
informing a court of the basis for its motion and identifying
those portions of the pleadings, depositions, answers to
interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the
affidavits, if any, which it believes demonstrate the absence
of a genuine issue of material fact. Celotex, 477
U.S. at 323.
56(e) specifies that once a properly supported motion for
summary judgment is made, “the adverse party's
response, by affidavits or as otherwise provided in this
rule, must set forth specific facts to establish that there
is a genuine issue for trial.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e). In
viewing the facts presented on a motion for summary judgment,
a court must construe all facts in a light most favorable to
the non-moving party and draw all legitimate inferences and
resolve all doubts in favor of that party. Keri, 458
F.3d at 628. A court's role is not to evaluate the weight
of the evidence, to judge the credibility of witnesses, or to
determine the truth of the matter, but instead to determine
whether there is a genuine issue of triable fact.
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, 477 U.S. 242, 249-50
District of Indiana Local Rule 56-1(f) requires a party
seeking summary judgment against a pro se party to serve that
party with the notice found in Appendix C to the Local Rules.
The notice advises an unrepresented party of the rules for
responding to a summary judgment motion. The parties moving
for summary judgment have complied with this rule.
See (Notice, ECF No. 32).