that defendants violated § 1985(3) by interfering with the exercise of their "constitutional right to abortion." One of the essential elements of this claim, then, is a showing of state involvement. New York State Nat'l Org. of Women, 704 F. Supp. 1247; Portland Feminist Women's Health Center v. Advocates for Life, Inc., 712 F. Supp. 165 (D. Ore. 1988); Feminist Women's Health Center v. Roberts, No. C86-161 (W.D. Wash. March 11, 1988).
Plaintiffs claim that by blocking access to abortion clinics and by failing to notify police of their next target, defendants have acted to render police officials incapable of securing women seeking abortions equal access to medical treatment. Additionally, plaintiffs assert that the purpose of defendants' activities is to influence state and federal legislators to change current abortion law. Such actions, plaintiffs claim, satisfy the statute's requirement of state involvement.
As indicated above, "where the claimed violation of civil rights involves a right secured against interference only by the state, a § 1985(3) violation is proven only if 'the state is involved in the conspiracy or . . . the aim of the conspiracy is to influence the activity of the state.'" California Republican Party v. Mercier, 652 F. Supp. 928, 935 (C.D. Cal. 1986) (quoting Carpenters, 463 U.S. at 830). With regard to plaintiffs' claim that the purpose of defendants' activities is to influence state and federal legislators to change current abortion law, the court has reviewed the materials submitted by plaintiffs on this issue and finds that such materials do not sufficiently establish that this is the purpose of defendants' activities. Cf. Portland Feminist Women's Health Center v. Advocates for Life, Inc., 712 F. Supp. 165 (D. Ore. 1988) (on a motion to dismiss, plaintiffs' allegation that purpose of an anti-abortion conspiracy was to influence state and local officials to deny constitutional rights of women seeking abortions satisfied § 1985(3)'s state action requirement).
With regard to plaintiffs' claim that the state involvement requirement is met because law enforcement officials are involved to the extent of planning for and policing defendants' protest activities, the court finds the level of activity alleged too minimal to satisfy § 1985(3)'s state action requirement. Similarly, the court is unwilling to conclude that the failure of anti-abortion protesters to notify police of their next target (thereby allegedly rendering the police incapable of securing equal treatment for women seeking abortions) satisfies § 1985(3)'s state involvement requirement. But see New York State Nat'l Org. of Women v. Terry, 704 F. supp. at 1260 (S.D. N.Y. Jan. 10, 1989) (failure of anti-abortion protesters to notify police of their next target rendered the police incapable of securing equal treatment for women seeking abortions; such action satisfies § 1985(3) state involvement requirement, citing Novotny v. Great American Fed. Sav. & Loan Ass'n, 442 U.S. 366, 384, 60 L. Ed. 2d 957, 99 S. Ct. 2345 (1979) (Stevens, J., concurring)).
Because the court finds that plaintiffs have not shown the requisite state involvement on their "right to abortion" claim, the court will grant summary judgment on this claim in favor of the defendants and against the plaintiffs.
3. Acts in Furtherance of the Conspiracy
Defendants admit that they conspired and that they blockaded the plaintiff clinics. See Defendants' Answer at 11-13. This satisfies the third element of proving a § 1985(3) violation.
4. Injury or Deprivation of a Constitutional Right
The discussion above in sections III.A.2 and III.A.3 establish that plaintiffs have proven that women seeking abortions in the metropolitan Philadelphia area have been injured and or deprived of their constitutional rights.
5. Summary of Plaintiffs' § 1985(3) Claim
As explained above, the court finds that plaintiffs have shown that: (1) defendants conspired; (2) for the purpose of depriving women seeking abortions in the metropolitan Philadelphia area of their constitutional right to travel; and (3) that defendants blockaded plaintiff clinics in furtherance of the conspiracy; (4) thereby injuring said women or depriving them of their rights as citizens of the United States. See United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, Local 610 (Carpenters) v. Scott, 463 U.S. 825, 828-29, 77 L. Ed. 2d 1049, 103 S. Ct. 3352 (1983). Accordingly, the court will grant summary judgment in favor of plaintiffs and against defendants on the § 1985(3) (right to travel) claim. Also, for the reasons explained above, the court will grant summary judgment in favor of defendants and against plaintiffs on the § 1985(3) (right to abortion) claim.
I turn now to a discussion of plaintiffs' common law claims.
The common law tort of trespass to land serves to provide relief for invasions of one's right to exclusive use and possession of property. Northeast Women's Center v. McMonagle, 670 F. Supp. 1300, 1311 (E.D. Pa. 1987) (citing Hennigan v. Atlantic Refining Co., 282 F. Supp. 667, 679 (E.D. Pa. 1967), aff'd, 400 F.2d 857 (3d Cir. 1968), cert. denied, 395 U.S. 904, 23 L. Ed. 2d 216, 89 S. Ct. 1739 (1969)). Under Pennsylvania law, "one who intentionally enters land in possession of another without a privilege to do so is liable . . . to the possessor of the land as a trespasser . . . ." Northeast Women's Center, 670 F. Supp. at 1310-11 (quoting Kopka v. Bell Telephone Co., 371 Pa. 444, 450, 91 A.2d 232, 235 (1952). Similarly, "one who authorizes or directs another to commit an act which constitutes a trespass to another's land is himself liable as a trespasser to the same extent as if the trespass were committed directly by himself. . . ." Northeast Women's Center, 670 F. Supp. at 1311.
Plaintiffs assert that the "undisputed facts" establish that defendants intentionally entered upon the private property of the Women's Suburban Clinic, the Northeast Women's Center, and the Cherry Hill Women's Center without the consent of the owners of these facilities. Plaintiffs' Mem. of Law in Support of Motion for Summary Judgment [hereinafter "Plaintiffs' Mem."] at 31-32 (citing the court's Memorandum Opinion dated December 5, 1988, at 4-8).
After a hearing on plaintiffs' motion for civil contempt and in a Memorandum Opinion dated December 5, 1988, this court found defendants Randall Terry, Michael McMonagle, Joseph Foreman, and Operation Rescue in civil contempt of the temporary restraining order issued June 30, 1988. Because that Memorandum contains a lengthy discussion of the activities of the defendants, the court will not repeat the same here. It is sufficient to state, however, that defendants Terry, McMonagle, and Foreman each played an active role in leading the blockades and protests at facilities covered by the TRO, and that the organization known as Operation Rescue was instrumental in organizing, coordinating, and participating in the aforementioned protest activities. Furthermore, it is clear that these blockades and protest activities included entry by the defendants, and or giving direction to others to enter, onto private property without consent of the possessors of those properties. See Mem. Op. at 4-10.
Based on the above information, plaintiffs have satisfied their burden by demonstrating an absence of evidence to support the nonmoving party's case. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 325. Plaintiffs having satisfied their burden, the burden then shifts to the defendants, who must go beyond their pleadings and designate specific facts by use of affidavits, depositions, admissions, or answers to interrogatories showing there is a genuine issue for trial. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 324. Because defendants have made no mention of the trespass claim in their response to plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment, they have not met their burden under Celotex. Accordingly, plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment on the trespass claim will be granted.
C. Intentional Interference with Business Relations
Under Pennsylvania law, a plaintiff must demonstrate the following in order to prevail on an action for intentional interference with prospective contractual relations:
(1) that a prospective contractual relationship existed between the plaintiff and some third party; (2) that the defendants interfered with this relationship with the purpose or intent of harming the plaintiff by preventing the relationship from occurring; (3) that this interference was not privileged; and (4) that the plaintiff suffered actual harm or damage as a result of defendants' actions.
Techno Corp. v. Dahl Associates, Inc., 535 F. Supp. 303, 306 (W.D. Pa. 1982) (citing Behrend v. Bell Telephone Co., 242 Pa. Super. 47, 363 A.2d 1152, 1159 (1976)); Zions First National Bank, N.A. v. United Health Club, 704 F.2d 120, 125 (3d Cir. 1983).
Plaintiffs contend the following: defendants prevented patients from obtaining scheduled services at clinics on several occasions during the week of July 4, 1988; Operation Rescue literature indicates that by their actions, defendants intended to interfere with the business of the clinics; and plaintiffs suffered damages as a result of defendants' actions.
With regard to defendants' protest and blockade activities during the week of July 4, 1988, the court's Memorandum Opinion dated December 5, 1988, makes clear the following facts: (1) plaintiff clinics had existing and prospective business relations with third parties (i.e., persons seeking abortions or other family planning services); (2) the protest and blockade activities of the defendants during the week of July 4, 1988, interfered with these relationships; (3) defendants Terry, McMonagle, and Foreman were acting and directing others to participate in the protest and blockade activities, and the organization known as Operation Rescue was instrumental in organizing, coordinating, and participating in these activities; and (4) plaintiff clinics suffered actual harm or damage as a result of defendants' actions. See Mem. Op. at 4-10, 13-14. These facts establish the first, third, and fourth elements of a claim for intentional interference with contractual relations.
With regard to the second element, that is, whether defendants interfered with the clinic-patient relationship with the purpose or intent of harming the plaintiff by preventing the relationship from occurring, plaintiffs have presented "Operation Rescue" literature
indicating that Operation Rescue entails "pro-life Americans [placing] their bodies in front of an abortion mill, thereby preventing children from being killed and women from being exploited." Plaintiffs' Exhibit to Summary Judgment Motion, Exhibit 11. The literature describes the then-planned "rescue" in Philadelphia during the period July 4-6, 1988, and also describes two earlier, "successful" rescues in which pro-lifers prevented the opening of abortion clinics as a result of blockading activity. Furthermore, defendants admit that their conspiracy was motivated by a desire to "close down profit-making abortion clinics." Defendants' Answer at 11. Based on the conduct of the defendants during the week of July 4, 1988, see Mem. Op. at 7-10, the aforementioned Operation Rescue literature, and defendants' admission, the court finds it reasonable to conclude that defendants interfered with the clinic-patient relationship with the purpose or intent of harming the plaintiff by preventing the relationship from occurring.
Based on the above information, the court finds that plaintiffs have successfully discharged their initial burden by making a showing sufficient to establish every element essential to their claim and identifying evidence which it believes shows an absence of a genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 324, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265, 106 S. Ct. 2548 (1986); Childers v. Joseph, 842 F.2d 689, 694 (3d Cir. 1988). Plaintiffs having satisfied their burden, the burden shifts to defendants, who must go beyond its pleading and designate specific facts by use of affidavits, depositions, admissions, or answers to interrogatories showing there is a genuine issue for trial. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 324.
In response, defendants do not dispute or rebut plaintiffs' contention that they interfered with the clinic-patient relationship with the purpose or intent of harming the plaintiff by preventing the relationship from occurring. Instead, defendants' only contentions are that plaintiffs did not sufficiently prove damages they suffered as a result of the defendants' actions at the contempt hearing, and that plaintiffs' dismissal of their damages claims in the underlying action estops them from claiming actual harm or damage.
With regard to the first contention, the court notes that the evidence adduced at the contempt hearing indicated that defendants' activities prevented plaintiff clinics from rendering services and prevented numerous patients from attending previously scheduled appointments for medical services. See Mem Op. at 13-14. While this may have resulted in lost income for the clinics, plaintiffs did not present sufficient evidence at the contempt hearing to support an award of compensatory damages award for such harm. However, the court did find that certain plaintiff clinics suffered actual harm in the nature of unproductive employee work time as a result of defendants' protest activities during the week of July 4, 1988, and awarded said clinics $ 2,308.03 in compensatory damages. See Mem. Op. at 13-14. The court finds that these damages constitute actual harm suffered as a result of defendants' interference with the relationship between plaintiff clinics and their patients. Additionally, the court finds no merit to defendants' argument that plaintiffs' dismissal of their claims for damages estops them from claiming that actual harm or injury resulted from defendants' actions.
After review of all evidentiary material in the record and based on the foregoing, the court finds that plaintiffs have made a showing sufficient to establish every element essential to their claim of intentional interference with prospective contractual relations. Furthermore, the court finds that there is no genuine issue as to any material facts regarding this claim. Accordingly, plaintiffs are entitled to judgment as a matter of law on this claim. White v. Westinghouse Electric Co., 862 F.2d 56, 59 (3d Cir. 1988).
D. False Imprisonment
Under Pennsylvania law, a claim for false imprisonment requires proof that an actor:
(1) . . . intend[ed] to confine the other or a third person within boundaries fixed by the actor, and
(2) his act directly or indirectly results in such a confinement of the other, and