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John Hart v. Tannery et al

March 14, 2011

JOHN HART, PLAINTIFF,
v.
TANNERY ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Tucker, J.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Presently before the Court is Defendant Brooke Tannery's Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Amended Complaint Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) (Doc. 8); Plaintiff John Hart's Response in Opposition thereto (Doc. 10); Defendant Christopher Ferry and Hilltown Township's Motion to Dismiss Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) (Doc. 7) and Plaintiff's Response in Opposition thereto (Doc. 11). For the reasons set forth below, upon careful consideration of the parties submissions and exhibits thereto, the Court will Grant the Motions.

I. PROCEDURAL HISTORY

This action arises out of circumstances surrounding Plaintiff's previous arrest and incarceration in 2008.*fn1 The arrest appears to have been based upon allegations of harassment made by Defendant Brooke Tannery ("Tannery"). Pro Se Plaintiff, John Hart ("Hart") filed a Complaint against Defendants Tannery, Police Officer, Christopher Ferry ("Ferry"), and the Hilltown Township ("Township") on July 27, 2010 asserting various claims under both Federal and State law. (Doc.1). The following day, July 28, 2010, Plaintiff filed an Amended Complaint. (Doc. 2). In response, Defendants Ferry and Township jointly filed a Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Amended Complaint on December 14, 2010. Defendant Tannery also filed a Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Amended Complaint or in the alternative a Motion For a More Definitive Statement Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12 (e). On January 31, 2011, Plaintiff filed Answers to Defendants' respective motions.

II. FACTUAL BACKGROUND

On or around September of 2007, Plaintiff and Defendant Tannery met on MySpace, a popular social networking website. Tr. Hr'g on Prot. From Abuse 8: 8-15, Aug. 20, 2008; (Def.'s Mem. In Supp. of Mot. To Dismiss 8). Two months later, in November of 2007, Plaintiff and Defendant Tannery met in person at a local establishment in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Am. Compl. ¶ 7.) A relationship later ensured. According to Tannery, the entire relationship between the two consisted of approximately five face to face meetings, following two months of communicating via MySpace and email. Tr. Hr'g on Prot. From Abuse 8: 22-25, 9: 1. (Def.'s Mem. In Supp. of Mot. To Dismiss 2). In January of 2008, the relationship between Defendant Tannery and Plaintiff became strained and was subsequently terminated. (Am. Compl. ¶ 8.) The Complaint lacks any factual detail with regards to the break-up; nonetheless, Plaintiff avers that Defendant Tannery was emotionally strained over the break-up and intended to cause Plaintiff financial and emotional problems. (Am. Compl. ¶ 9.)

Providing some light on the reason for the termination of the relationship, Defendant Tannery noted that the relationship soured because of Plaintiff's excessive text messages and rude insistent demeanor. Tr. Hr'g on Prot. From Abuse 9: 18-25; (Def.'s Mem. in Supp. of Mot. toDismiss 2). Specifically, during a hearing for a Protection From Abuse Order, Defendant testified as follows:

Q: Okay, you're talking about text messages. What exactly does that mean?

A: He would send me message[s] through his phone to my cell phone. From cell phone to cell phone.

Q: And that started to happened when?

A: They started getting kind of rude in December.

Q: Of 2007?

A: 2007.

Q: And at some point did you decide that you were going to end things with him, or what did you decide to do?

A: Yeah I told him that I just needed to cool things off.

Q: When did that happen?

A: Probably in January 2008.

Q: And how--what did you tell him?

A: I just told him it was too much. He was -- he understood that. And he need to-- that he was calling too much and texting too much and that he was starting to scare me. I told him a couple times he was staring to scare me because he was-- Q: Why dis he scare you?

A: He was calling me names and texting too often.

Q: When you say "too often," what do you mean by that?

A: Like if I -- there was one Friday in particular he texted like ten times about where I was and what I was doing. I told him I was at work. You ...


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