United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania
MALACHY E. MANNION, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
before the court is the defendants’ motion for summary
judgment. (Doc. 40). Based upon the court’s review of
the record in this action, the defendants’ motion will
22, 2016, the plaintiff, James Lyons, brought this civil
rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983 against
defendants Fred Westover (“defendant Westover”),
an officer with the Salem Township Police Department, and
Salem Township (“Township”). (Doc. 1). The
Township filed a motion to dismiss the plaintiff’s
complaint. (Doc. 8). By memorandum and order dated July 31,
2017, the court granted the motion to dismiss, without
prejudice, to allow the plaintiff an opportunity to cure the
deficiencies of his complaint relating to the
Township’s municipal liability claim (Doc. 16, Doc.
17). The plaintiff filed an amended complaint on August 14,
2017. (Doc. 18).
August 28, 2017, the Township challenged the allegations of
the plaintiff’s amended complaint on the same bases
raised in its original motion to dismiss. (Doc. 21). By order
dated October 31, 2017, the defendant’s motion was
denied. (Doc. 26).
December 10, 2018, the defendants filed the instant motion
for summary judgment (Doc. 40) along with a statement of
facts (Doc. 41) and supporting brief (Doc. 42). The plaintiff
filed a brief in opposition to the defendants’ motion
(Doc. 45) and responsive statement of facts (Doc. 46) on
January 10, 2019. On February 25, 2019, the defendants filed
a reply brief (Doc. 49) and a response to the
plaintiff’s counter statement of facts (Doc. 50).
STANDARD OF REVIEW
judgment is appropriate “if the pleadings, the
discovery [including, depositions, answers to
interrogatories, and admissions on file] and disclosure
materials on file, and any affidavits show that there is no
genuine issue as to any material fact and that the movant is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(c); see also Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S.
317, 322-23 (1986); Turner v. Schering-Plough Corp.,
901 F.2d 335, 340 (3d Cir. 1990). A factual dispute is
genuine if a reasonable jury could find for the non-moving
party, and is material if it will affect the outcome of the
trial under governing substantive law. Anderson v.
Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986); Aetna
Cas. & Sur. Co. v. Ericksen, 903 F.Supp. 836, 838
(M.D. Pa. 1995). At the summary judgment stage, “the
judge’s function is not himself to weigh the evidence
and determine the truth of the matter but to determine
whether there is a genuine issue for trial.”
Anderson, 477 U.S. at 249; see also Marino v.
Indus. Crating Co., 358 F.3d 241, 247 (3d Cir. 2004) (a
court may not weigh the evidence or make credibility
determinations). Rather, the court must consider all evidence
and inferences drawn therefrom in the light most favorable to
the non-moving party. Andreoli v. Gates, 482 F.3d
641, 647 (3d Cir. 2007).
prevail on summary judgment, the moving party must
affirmatively identify those portions of the record which
demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of material fact.
Celotex, 477 U.S. at 323-24. The moving party can
discharge the burden by showing that “on all the
essential elements of its case on which it bears the burden
of proof at trial, no reasonable jury could find for the
non-moving party.” In re Bressman, 327 F.3d
229, 238 (3d Cir. 2003); see also Celotex, 477 U.S.
at 325. If the moving party meets this initial burden, the
non-moving party “must do more than simply show that
there is some metaphysical doubt as to material facts,
” but must show sufficient evidence to support a jury
verdict in its favor. Boyle v. County of Allegheny,
139 F.3d 386, 393 (3d Cir. 1998) (quoting Matsushita
Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574,
586 (1986)). However, if the non-moving party “fails to
make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an
element essential to [the non-movant’s] case, and on
which [the non-movant] will bear the burden of proof at
trial, ” Rule 56 mandates the entry of summary judgment
because such a failure “necessarily renders all other
facts immaterial.” Celotex Corp., 477 U.S. at
322-23; Jakimas v. Hoffman-La Roche, Inc., 485 F.3d
770, 777 (3d Cir. 2007).
review, the defendants’ undisputed facts of record
demonstrate that, on July 22, 2014, at approximately 4:47
p.m., Karen Fenstemaker (“Ms. Fenstemaker”)
called 911 to report that the plaintiff had sexually
assaulted his niece, Tanya Lyons (“Tanya”). The
dispatch entry reads:
20 YOF MENTALLY CHALLENGED WAS SEXUALLY ASSAULTED THERE
HAPPENED LAST NIGHT
CALLERS SISTER LIVES THERE AND FEMALE TOLD HER THAT A MALE
NAMED JIMMY LYONS THAT LIVES THERE ALSO RAPED HER MALE IS THE
CALLER KAREN FENSTEMAKER . . .
3RD PARTY INFO
CALLERS SISTER IS AT THE HOUSE NOW HER NAME IS ...