United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Dallas Division
MEMORANDUM ORDER AND OPINION
BROWN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the Court is Defendant Alan E. Miles's Motion for Summary
Judgment on Plaintiff D.C.'s Deemed Admissions (Doc. No.
57). Having considered the motion, submissions, and
applicable law, the Court determines the motion should be
granted for the following reasons.
following allegations are taken from D.C.'s First Amended
Complaint. While a student at Skyline High School in the
Dallas Independent School District (DISD), D.C. was assaulted
by another student (Student 2) on campus. Miles, a DISD
police officer, apprehended D.C. by “slanging him head
first into lockers located in the hallway at the school,
” “plac[ing] D.C. into a chokehold with his
forearm[, ] and dragg[ing] D.C. several feet down the hall
and into a classroom.” D.C. was “held there,
” where Miles “slammed [D.C.'s] head against
the desk.” Miles arrested D.C., who was charged with
resisting arrest. The apprehension and arrest “caused
multiple contusions and bruised to D.C.'s neck, face,
forehead, and lips.” D.C. brought this action against
Miles alleging claims for violations of D.C.'s Fourth and
Fifth Amendment rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (Doc. No.
Miles filed a partial motion to dismiss the Fifth
Amendment-based section 1983 claim, and the Court granted the
motion (Doc. Nos. 27 & 37).
subsequently served D.C. with requests for admission (Doc.
No. 49-1; see also Doc. No. 54). D.C. failed to
timely respond to the requests, and Miles filed a motion to
deem matters admitted (Doc. No. 48). D.C. did not respond to
the motion, which the Court granted (Doc. No. 54), and D.C.
has not moved to withdraw the admissions. Accordingly, the
matters in the requests for admission are deemed admitted and
are conclusively established for purposes of this action
under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 36 and this Court's
Order (Doc. No. 54). See Fed. R. Civ. P. 36(a)(1),
(a)(3), (b); Murrell v. Casterline, 307
Fed.Appx. 778, 780 (5th Cir. 2008) (deemed admission on
essential issue can serve as basis for summary judgment);
Dukes v. S. Carolina Ins. Co., 770 F.2d 545, 548-49
(5th Cir. 1985).
others, the following factual matters set out in Miles's
requests to D.C. are admitted:
October 2015, D.C. was involved in a physical altercation
with Student 2 on the campus of Skyline High School. Miles
and another DISD police officer, Johanna Williams, received a
call about the fight and responded to the scene. Thereafter,
D.C. attempted to start a second fight with Student 2. To
prevent the assault, Miles restrained D.C., who resisted by
pushing and shoving Miles and grabbing Miles by the throat.
There were no lockers in the “parking
lot/courtyard” were the apprehension took place, and
Miles did not “slang and/or slam” D.C. into
lockers during the apprehension.
instructed D.C. to calm down and demanded that D.C. place his
hands behind his back. D.C. refused to comply, and Miles
placed his left forearm around D.C.'s upper body and
“pulled, ” but did not “drag, ” D.C.
to a school security office. This walk lasted less than
fifteen seconds, and there were no lockers in the hallway
leading to the office. Miles continued to try to subdue D.C.,
but D.C. continued to resist arrest. Miles and Williams were
met by campus officer Anthony Allen in the office, and Miles,
with the assistance of Williams and Allen, placed D.C. in
handcuffs. Miles then arrested D.C. for disorderly conduct
and resisting arrest, search, or transport. Miles did not
“slam” D.C. against a desk. D.C. was not injured
during the arrest, and his broken lip, neck and back pain,
and contusions resulted from his previous altercations with
now has moved for summary judgment  on D.C.'s remaining
Fourth Amendment-based section 1983 claim, which alleges
Miles used excessive force. Miles asserts he is entitled to
qualified immunity based on the deemed admissions.
judgment is appropriate if the movant shows “there is
no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(a); Norwegian Bulk Transp. A/S v. Int'l Marine
Terminals Partnership, 520 F.3d 409, 411 (5th Cir.
2008). “A court must be satisfied that no reasonable
trier of fact could find for the nonmoving party or, in other
words, that the evidence favoring the nonmoving party is
insufficient to enable a reasonable jury to return a verdict
in her favor.” Norwegian Bulk Transp. A/S, 520
F.3d at 411-12 (internal quotation marks and citations
“usual summary judgment burden of proof” is
altered when the movant asserts a qualified immunity defense.
Brown v. Callahan, 623 F.3d 249, 253 (5th Cir.
2010). When a government official pleads qualified immunity,
the burden shifts to the plaintiff to demonstrate the
defense's inapplicability by “establishing a
genuine fact issue as to whether the official's allegedly
wrongful conduct violated clearly established law.”
Brown, 537 F.3d at 253; Club Retro, L.L.C. v.
Hilton, 568 F.3d 181, 194 (5th Cir. 2009). The court
must view all facts and reasonable inferences drawn from the
record “in the light most favorable to” a
plaintiff opposing the motion, but the plaintiff cannot rest
on conclusory allegations or assertions. Heinsohn v.
Carabin & Shaw, P.C., 832 F.3d 224, 234 (5th Cir.
2016); Poole v. City of Shreveport, 691 F.3d 624,
630 (5th Cir. 2012).
doctrine of qualified immunity protects government officials
‘from liability for civil damages insofar as their
conduct does not violate clearly established statutory or
constitutional rights of which a reasonable person would have
known.'” Pearson v. Callahan, 555 U.S.
223, 231 (2009) (quoting Harlow v. Fitzgerald, 457
U.S. 800, 818 (1982)). Courts use a two-part test to
determine if a government official is entitled to qualified
immunity. First, the court determines if the official's
conduct violated a constitutional right. Terry v.
Hubert, 609 F.3d 757, 761 (5th Cir. 2010). For an
excessive force claim, “[t]he second prong of the test
‘is better understood as two separate inquiries:
whether the allegedly violated constitutional rights were
clearly established at the time of the incident; and, if so,
whether the conduct of the defendant was objectively
unreasonable in light of that then clearly ...