United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
DENYING AS MOOT PLAINTIFF'S JUNE 2017 MOTION TO PROCEED
WITHOUT PREPAYING THE FILING FEE (DKT. NO. 2), GRANTING
PLAINTIFF'S SEPTEMBER 2018 MOTION TO PROCEED WITHOUT
PREPAYING FILING FEE (DKT. NO. 8), DENYING PLAINTIFF'S
MOTION FOR ISSUANCE OF A SUMMONS (DKT. NO. 10) AND DISMISSING
PAMELA PEPPER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
plaintiff, who is representing herself, filed a complaint
against the Milwaukee Police Department. Dkt. No. 1. The same
day, she filed a motion for leave to proceed without
prepaying the $400 filing fee. Dkt. No. 2. The court did not
timely screen the plaintiff's complaint; over a year
later, it issued an order requiring the plaintiff to file a
new motion to proceed without prepayment of the filing fee
and to file an amended complaint. Dkt. No. 6. The plaintiff
timely filed an amended complaint, dkt. no. 7, together with
a second motion for leave to proceed without prepayment of
the filing fee, dkt. no. 8. Finally, the plaintiff has filed
a motion for issuance of summons. Dkt. No. 10.
Motions to Proceed Without Prepaying Filing Fee (Dkt. Nos. 2,
the plaintiff has filed a second motion for leave to proceed
without paying the filing fee, with updated information, the
court will deny as moot her first motion. Dkt. No. 2. The
court will grant the second motion.
plaintiff filed her second motion on the proper, non-prisoner
form. Dkt. No. 8. That motion indicates that the plaintiff is
not employed, is not married and has two sons-ages four and
fourteen-to whom she provides $350 a month in support. She
has no monthly wages or salary, but indicates that she
received $2, 000 from “Milwaukee Public School”
over the twelve months prior to the date she filed the motion
(the twelve-month period preceding September 26, 2018). The
plaintiff reports a mortgage payment of $850 per month and
household expenses of $200 a month, for a total of $1, 050 in
total monthly expenses. She does not own a car, but reports
that she does own her own home, worth approximately $22, 500.
Id. at 3. Finally, she indicates that she collects
$200 in rent from a tenant and that she cuts grass for $150
to cover her mortgage payments. Id. Despite some
discrepancies in the affidavit, the court finds that the
plaintiff is not able to pay the filing fee.
Screening Amended Complaint
court detailed in its order requiring the plaintiff to file
an amended complaint, the court must dismiss complaints that
are frivolous, fail to state a claim or that seek monetary
relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28
amended complaint provides more details than the original
complaint. The amended complaint names the City of
Milwaukee-instead of the Milwaukee Police Department-as the
defendant. Dkt. No. 7 at 1. It alleges that the plaintiff
“was harassed by Officer Joran M. Petkovich”
while driving home from work on January 6, 2012. Id.
at 2. The plaintiff says that she was driving down Wells and
Water Street near City Hall when she was arrested and
detained. Id. She claims that Officer Petkovich had
no reason to believe that she violated any law and had no
probable cause. Id.
amended complaint alleges that the plaintiff “asked for
the Chief because he never asked for my license in my car,
” but that the officer “snatched me out the car,
” and asked for the plaintiff's license
“after shoving my head into the back of the squad
car.” Id. The plaintiff says that “Mayor
Tom Barrett came out talking to the officer” and that a
sergeant came on the scene. Id. She alleges that the
sergeant visited her in the back of the squad car and told
her that Mayor Barret had suggested she go to jail for
obstructing and resisting an officer. Id. The
plaintiff says that she was booked and jailed for three days
as a result of this encounter. Id. at 3.
complaint asserts that the plaintiff is “stating a
claim” by “alleg[ing] that Officer Petkovich, and
Sergant Berken violated my civil rights by unlawfully
arresting me because of my race.” Id. at 4.
She lists four causes of action: unlawful arrest, false
arrest, Equal Protection and false imprisonment. Id.
court's August 28, 2018 order, it remarked that the
plaintiff's original complaint hinted at claims of
unlawful arrest, false imprisonment and a claim under 42
U.S.C. §1983 that the defendants violated the
plaintiff's rights under the Equal Protection Clause.
Dkt. No. 6 at 7. It asked the plaintiff to provide more
details in her amended complaint, such as the date the events
took place, where they took place and what the plaintiff was
doing when she was arrested. Id. at 8. While the
plaintiff provided these details in the amended complaint-she
says she was driving home from work on January 6, 2012 and
was on “Wells & Water” near City Hall when
she was arrested-she still has not provided sufficient
information to state claims for the causes of action she has
amended complaint changed the defendant in this case from the
Milwaukee Police Department to the City of Milwaukee. The
plaintiff likely made this change because of the ...