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Artiles v. Vitanza

August 6, 2009

DEBORAH ARTILES, PLAINTIFF,
v.
NICOLO A. VITANZA; ROBERT CARPENTER; CHRISTOPHER MARTINO; STEPHEN W. GALLAGHER; THE TOWNSHIP OF HANOVER; DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Katharine S. Hayden, U.S.D.J.

OPINION

I. INTRODUCTION

This § 1983 action arises from the November 20, 2004 arrest of plaintiff Deborah Artiles. Artiles seeks damages against the Township of Hanover, New Jersey (―Township‖) and several law enforcement officers employed by the Hanover Police Department (―HPD‖): Stephen W. Gallagher, the Township's Chief of Police; and Robert Carpenter, Nicolo Vitanza, and Christopher Martino, all officers of the HPD.*fn1 Specifically, Artiles alleges that the latter three officers violated her rights under the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution by:

(1) unlawfully arresting her without probable cause; (2) using excessive force in doing so; and (3) maliciously causing her to be subjected to a baseless prosecution thereafter. Artiles alleges further that the collective failure of the Township and Gallagher properly to train, supervise, reprimand, or discipline the officers constituted a de facto policy to acquiesce in their unconstitutional conduct, which is also actionable under § 1983. Finally, Artiles asserts state-law claims against the officers for false arrest/false imprisonment, assault and battery, malicious prosecution, malicious abuse of process, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Defendants now move for summary judgment [D.E. # 42]. As isn't always the case, the Court has before it substantially more than a cold record comprised only of transcripts, reports, exhibits, and briefs. This record is augmented by audio and video recordings providing context to the events surrounding the November 20, 2004 incident. Based on all of the evidence adduced, and for the reasons that follow, defendants' motion is granted.

II. JURISDICTION

The Court has federal question jurisdiction because Artiles' complaint raises issues of federal constitutional law and alleges a deprivation of constitutional rights by officers acting under color of state law. 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331, 1343; 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Supplemental jurisdiction exists over her state-law claims. 28 U.S.C. § 1367(a). Venue is proper as well, since all acts giving rise to Artiles' claims occurred within this district. 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b).

III. STANDARD OF REVIEW

―A party against whom relief is sought may move . . . with or without supporting affidavits, for summary judgment on all or part of the claim.‖ Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(b). However, the judgment sought shall be rendered only if ―there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and . . . the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.‖ Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c). When a party moves for summary judgment, the non-moving party must then provide ―specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial.‖ Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587 (1986) (citing Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e). An issue is genuine if ―the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the non-moving party.‖ Fowle v. C&C Cola, 868 F.2d 59, 61 (3d Cir. 1989) (citing Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986)). To determine whether there is a genuine issue for trial, ―all justifiable inferences are to be drawn in‖ the favor of the non-movant. Anderson, 477 U.S. at 255; see also Gray v. York Newspapers, 957 F.2d 1070, 1078 (3d Cir. 1992). Defendants' burden ―may be discharged by showing . . . that there is an absence of evidence to support the nonmoving party's case.‖ Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 325 (1986). Therefore, the Court may not grant defendants' summary judgment motion if there is sufficient evidence to allow a reasonable jury to return a verdict for Artiles, see Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248, or if the factual dispute is one ―that might affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law . . . .‖ Id.

Under the doctrine of qualified immunity, officers named in a § 1983 action who performed discretionary functions are ―shielded 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.‖ Harlow v. Fitzgerald, 457 U.S. 800, 818 (1982). Qualified immunity analysis is a double-faceted inquiry. The Court must ask whether the facts alleged, viewed in the light most favorable to Artiles, show that the defendants' conduct violated a constitutional right. Saucier v. Katz, 533 U.S. 194, 201 (2001). If the court answers this question affirmatively, it must then determine whether the right was clearly established, i.e., ―whether it would be clear to a reasonable officer that his conduct was unlawful in the situation he confronted.‖ Id. at 202.

In Wright v. City of Philadelphia, 409 F.3d 595 (3d Cir. 2005), the Third Circuit grappled with an as-of-then unanswered question: Whether the analysis prescribed by Saucier is best described as a constitutionality-qualified immunity two-step, or whether constitutional review of a plaintiff's claims is only the first inquiry under the penumbra of a larger ―Qualified Immunity‖ doctrine. Wright, 409 F.3d at 600 (―Specifically, the dispute is whether a court must determine the issue of whether there has been a constitutional violation before reaching the qualified immunity question, or whether that inquiry is the first part of a two-pronged test for qualified immunity.‖); see also id. at 604-07 (Smith, J., concurring). The majority opinion in Wright did not definitively answer the question, but utilized the latter approach under the circumstances of the particular case as it presented itself on appeal. Id. at 601. The United States Supreme Court recently held that the Saucier inquiry is no longer mandatory, and that ―judges of the district courts and the courts of appeals should be permitted to exercise their sound discretion in deciding which of the two prongs of the qualified immunity analysis should be addressed first in light of the circumstances in the particular case at hand.‖ Pearson v. Callahan, 129 S.Ct. 808, 813 (2009) (emphasis added). Pearson thus makes clear that the majority in Wright got it right. ―Qualified Immunity‖ consists of two prongs: Whether a constitutional right was violated, and whether that right was clearly established. Here, the Court sees no reason to depart from Saucier, and it thus asks first whether a constitutional right was violated, and if and only if the answer is yes, whether the right was clearly established at the time. If the answer to either inquiry is no, qualified immunity is appropriate.

IV. FACTS & PROCEDURAL HISTORY

A. Preliminary Note

Facts stated herein have been taken from the complaint, the parties' legal memoranda, and affidavits and exhibits submitted in support thereof. Counsel for each side have submitted statements of material fact that do not comply with Local Civil Rule 56.1 Defendants' counsel have submitted within the moving brief a statement of facts with separately numbered paragraphs. Defendants' Brief in Support of Motion for Summary Judgment (―Def. Br.‖) at 4-10. See L. Civ. R. 56.1, cmts. 1, 2(b) (―[A] party moving for summary judgment must file a document separate from its brief containing a statement of undisputed facts or face dismissal of the motion . . . .‖; ―Under the 2008 amendments to L. Civ. R. 56.1(a), each party's statement of undisputed facts . . . must be a document separate and apart from the legal briefs.‖). Despite this technical noncompliance with the recently amended local rule, dismissal of the motion to require defendants to re-move and separate the statement of facts from the brief would serve no useful purpose. See Inductotherm Indus. v. United States, No. 99-2451, 2002 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14046, at *5 n.1 (D.N.J. Mar. 26, 2002) (Rodriguez, J.) (foregoing dismissal of summary judgment motion for failure to provide statement of material facts).

Counsel for plaintiff, Steven A. Hershkowitz, however, has submitted a responsive statement that lacks substantive compliance with the local rules. Rather than separately enumerate responses to defendants' fact statement, Hershkowitz interweaves a hyperbolic narrative of facts within the brief. Plaintiff's Brief in Opposition to Motion for Summary Judgment (―Pl. Opp. Br.‖) at 4-14. To the extent that the responsive statement does not directly reply to a particular enumerated fact in defendants' statement, the Court deems that statement unopposed. L. Civ. R. 56.1. The brief submitted by Hershkowitz is also objectionable for counsel's inclusion of such incendiary remarks as accusing an officer of ―sounding very much like a psychopathic megalomaniac (emphasis and underline in original),‖ likening that same officer to a ―wife-beater who hits where the bruises won't show,‖ and condemning the HPD for operating as an ―intra-departmental ‗goon squad.'‖ See Pl. Opp. Br. at 2, 13.

B. Plaintiff's Prior Interactions with Defendants

At all times relevant here, Artiles resided in a condominium located at 3502 Appleton Way in Whippany, New Jersey. Def. Br. at 4. The causes of action alleged in Artiles' complaint concern events that occurred on November 20, 2004. As background evidence, Artiles asserts that she has a history with the HPD (and in particular, Martino and Vitanza) related to ongoing quarrels with a former boyfriend that had begun before the date of the incident precipitating this lawsuit. Compl. ¶ 24. Artiles alleges in her complaint that the officers ―had attempted to suborn [her] to falsify allegations in support of criminal charges which [they] wanted to proffer against [her] former boyfriend.‖ Compl. ¶ 24. She claims that on a particular evening before the date of the incident, certain officers with the HPD (including Martino) were called to her residence regarding a domestic dispute. Affidavit of Deborah Artiles (―Artiles Aff.‖) ¶ 7. She asserts that she explained to the officers that there had only been a misunderstanding and that she did not want her ex-boyfriend to face prosecution, but that Martino ignored her and ―insisted that, because the matter was a ‗domestic dispute,' he would arrest [her] [boy]friend and force [her] to testify against him.‖ Id. ¶¶ 8-9. She further claims that because she kept her ―word and refused to prosecute, and because [she] complained to . . . Vitanza about how [she] had been treated by . . . Martino, both . . . Martino and Vitanza became abusive and insulting.‖ Id. ¶ 10. At some point, Artiles filed a citizen complaint against Martino related to the incident, which was ultimately dismissed. Certification of Steven A. Hershkowitz (―Hershkowitz Cert.‖) Ex. C at 68:3-69:7; Ex. E at 5 (police report completed by Carpenter).

The resolution of the continuing domestic dispute (and other instances in which HPD officers responded to various disturbances at Artiles' residence) is unclear on the record, and the specific contours are not material here.*fn2 It appears that the HPD responded about four times to incidents involving Artiles at her residence (which concerned altercations with her daughter as well as her ex-boyfriend). McCarthy Aff. Ex. C at 10:5-9.

C. The Telephone Calls on November 20, 2004

The audio recordings of the various telephone calls made on November 20, 2004 comprise a fundamental component of the record evidence.*fn3 In considering the motion now before it, the Court has had occasion to listen to these recordings-and to listen to them again. The recorded calls, alone and in conjunction with the other available evidence, reveal that it was Artiles-not defendants-who originated, misrepresented, and escalated the material events that ultimately resulted in her arrest. They also demonstrate that Artiles had contemplated this civil action well before defendants exerted any force upon her under color of law.

In the early evening on Saturday, November 20, 2004, Artiles returned home from her job as a realtor, ate dinner and drank a glass of wine. McCarthy Aff. Ex. A at 171:1-25.*fn4 Tired, she took two sleeping pills and went to bed, at which time she alleges that the couple in the unit above her began making incessant banging noises. Compl. ¶¶ 26-27; Affidavit of Deborah Artiles (―Artiles Aff.‖) ¶ 11; Artiles 1/22/08 Dep. at 113:1-4. At approximately 8:20 p.m., Artiles called HPD's central telephone line to complain about the alleged noise coming from upstairs. Dispatcher Collora-who was responsible for receiving calls to both the central and emergency lines-answered this call. Artiles explained to Collora that there were people upstairs from her whom she had ―put up with‖ for a very long time and that these people had called the police on her before. She declared that she was ―sick and tired‖ of them waking her up early in the morning. Dispatcher Collora interrupted by asking with whom he was speaking; Artiles refused to give this information because, she explained, when her neighbors had previously called the police to complain about her, they had not provided their information. Collora inquired where the caller lived and from where the noise was coming, and Artiles responded-falsely-that she lived at ―3505 Whipa -- Uh, Eden Lane,‖ and that the noise was coming from 3506 Appleton Way. Apparently confused between Artiles' contradictory responses with respect to her location, Collora stated to her that she had just given him two different addresses. Beginning to raise her voice, Artiles clarified that she lived on Appleton Way in Eden Lane and that the noise started at 5:00 a.m. and ended at 11:00 p.m. or midnight every night. Collora then attempted to confirm what he believed to be the caller's location (3505 Appleton Way) and source of the noise (3506 Appleton Way), and advised Artiles that HPD would send a car down. She responded, ―Yeah, thank you.‖ Collora then asked again what the caller's name was, at which time Artiles became irate and began to shout that previous callers did not give their names when they called to complain about her. Still shouting, she repeated her complaint that she was sick and tired of being woken up at 6:00 a.m. Raising his own voice, Collora warned Artiles to stop yelling at him, said goodbye, and hung up the phone.

Immediately after this first call, Collora called Vitanza on an internal HPD line to complain that he had just gotten an ―earful‖ from Artiles, whom he referred to as Vitanza's ―girlfriend‖ (an apparent reference to Vitanza's previous encounters with her), and announced that if Artiles ever called again and yelled at him when he asked for her name, he would file a complaint against her. Vitanza replied that Artiles was ―your girlfriend, not mine,‖ and that she was a ―mental patient.‖

Twelve minutes after making her first call to the HPD, Artiles dialed 911 at approximately 8:32 p.m., and again spoke-anonymously-to Collora. She stated that she believed there was an emergency at 3206 Appleton Way. Correcting her, Collora asked if she meant to say 3506. Artiles responded affirmatively and noted that there was ―a serious problem up there‖ because she heard ―all this banging.‖ Collora stated that HPD had already received a call on the matter, and that an officer had been dispatched to the scene.

As a result of Artiles' calls to the HPD and to 911, Vitanza, Carpenter, and a Patrolman Hermans were dispatched to 3506 Appleton Way to investigate the noise complaint. Def. Br. at 5; McCarthy Aff. Ex. E. The officers questioned the only two residents of the condominium above Artiles, Brian and Katherine Liccardo, who stated that they had been kneading pizza dough and that nothing was wrong. Def. Br. at 5; McCarthy Aff. Ex. E. Having determined that no emergency existed at the Liccardos' residence, Carpenter and Hermans proceeded downstairs to speak with Artiles while Vitanza questioned the Liccardos' neighbor (at 3505 Appleton Way, the address from which Artiles had stated she was calling during the first call to HPD) concerning the noise complaint. Vitanza testified at his deposition that the Liccardos' neighbor stated that she was not the one who had called HPD and that she believed it was the ―blonde female in 3502 who probably used her address.‖ Hershkowitz Cert. Ex. B at 74:10-15. Vitanza also stated that Artiles refused to answer when the officers knocked on the door, that he yelled to her not to call 911 unless there was an emergency, and that they had spoken to her neighbors who had indicated that she was the one causing the problem. Id. at 73:14-18; see also Compl. ¶ 32. The officers then left the scene. Def. Br. at 5; McCarthy Aff. Ex. E. There is some indication in the record that the officers returned a second time to investigate, but this is neither clear nor material. See Hershkowitz Cert. Ex. B. at 92:14-24.

Katherine Liccardo testified that Brian was in the kitchen making pizza early in the evening on November 20, 2004 and that she was in the living room watching television when they both heard a loud banging in the kitchen coming from the apartment below.*fn5 Katherine Dep. at 9:3-12. Not knowing what it was, she testified that they ignored the sound initially, but a few minutes later Artiles began banging on the ceiling again. Id. at 9:13-14. Katherine testified that Artiles was yelling and cursing for them to ―shut the f*ck up‖ and would not stop hitting the ceiling. Id. at 9:15-19, 12:24-13. She stated that she did bang on the floor momentarily in an attempt to get Artiles to stop banging and that she considered going downstairs to speak with Artiles, but she did not do so because she was ―a little nervous around her.‖ Id. at 9:20-25. She averred that whatever noise her husband was making was not out of the ordinary and that Artiles was overreacting. Id. at 12:5-10. Brian corroborated his wife's testimony, stating that on the night in question, he was kneading pizza dough when Artiles began yelling obscenities (specifically, ―shut the f*ck up‖) and banging on the ceiling. Brian Dep. at 12:9-14:2. Katherine testified that she was ―shocked‖ that the police had been called to their apartment to investigate what the police told them had been two different noise complaints. Katherine Dep. at 12:17-21, 14:2-15:10. She stated that when the officers arrived, she and Brian let them in to check out the condominium, and upon leaving the unit, she heard them proceed downstairs to Artiles' unit and the unit across the hall (3505 Appleton Way). Katherine Dep. at 14:21-20:6.

His suspicions aroused after the investigation at the condominium complex, Vitanza returned to HPD headquarters and listened to the recordings of the first two calls for comparison, and confirmed that Artiles had made both calls. McCarthy Aff. Ex. B. at 75:7-77:5. At approximately 9:40 p.m., a little over an hour after she made the first two calls, Artiles again called the HPD's central telephone line. She identified herself to Collora and this time gave her correct address (3502 Appleton Way). Collora asked her to hold on, at which time Artiles asked whether she should record the conversation. When Collora asked her what she wanted, Artiles stated that she wanted to know why people came to her door when in fact it was someone else who was harassing her. Vitanza then got on the line and explained that because she had refused to talk to them when they had arrived at her residence, he was preparing to charge her with filing a false 911 report. Artiles reacted incredulously, and exclaimed-falsely-that she did not ―know who the hell called‖ HPD, but that it might have been another person. Vitanza stated that he knew it was her voice, and asked Artiles if she had an emergency. Artiles responded with the following:

ARTILES: Do I have an emergency? Are you people crazy? Do you want a -- do you want a like lawsuit that I'll be a multimillionaire when you're done?*fn6

VITANZA: This call is being terminated. Thank you. Goodbye. Don't call again. You are harassing us.

ARTILES: I'm harassing you? You were at my front door tonight for no reason.

VITANZA: Once again I will add harassment to the charges.

ARTILES: Oh, you're -- to the charges for, for yeah.

VITANZA: Goodbye.

ARTILES: Ha ha.

McCarthy Aff. Ex. B. Two minutes later, at 9:42 p.m., Artiles again called HPD's central telephone line, and Vitanza answered the call. Artiles again threatened a lawsuit against HPD, and Vitanza advised that he was sending officers to her residence to place her under arrest. Id.

After this call, Vitanza called Hanover Municipal Judge Brian O'Toole at home in order to procure a warrant for Artiles' arrest. The conversation between Vitanza and Judge O'Toole demonstrates that the two were familiar with each other; Vitanza refers to himself as ―Tony,‖ and Judge O'Toole calls Vitanza ―Vito.‖ Vitanza described Artiles to the judge, reminding him that she had been involved in a couple of domestic disturbances the previous year. He then explained to Judge O'Toole that Artiles called the dispatcher on HPD's regular line, identified herself as a neighbor and complained that the people upstairs were making noise. He then stated that they dispatched a squad car to investigate, but that it did not get there right away. Vitanza related to Judge O'Toole that Artiles called 911 a few minutes later and stated that she believed there was an emergency. He stated that once the officers had arrived at the residence to investigate, they discovered that the upstairs neighbors (the Liccardos) had only been making pizza and that there was no emergency, a fact that was corroborated by the other neighbor (who actually resided at 3505 Appleton Way). Because he believed that she had called reporting an emergency when there was no emergency, Vitanza advised Judge O'Toole that he wanted to charge Artiles with making a false 911 call, and the judge agreed that such a charge was appropriate. Vitanza then recounted Artiles' telephone calls after the officers had been dispatched to the condominium complex, that she was ―screaming and yelling‖ at them, and that she falsely claimed that someone else had called 911. Because Artiles had refused to come to the door, Vitanza stated that he would like to put the charge on a warrant because of her ―obnoxious behavior.‖ Judge O'Toole agreed, and stated that he ―absolutely should‖ swear out such a warrant.

Moving to the subject of bail, Judge O'Toole asked Vitanza whether Artiles should be released on her own recognizance or whether she should have to post some amount of bail. Vitanza suggested that he was not looking for anything ―stupendous,‖ but that he thought Artiles should have to ―post a little‖ because she had been a ―pain in the ass.‖ Judge O'Toole asked whether $5,000 bail with a 10% cash requirement was appropriate, and Vitanza stated that such a requirement would suffice. Judge O'Toole then suggested to Vitanza that Artiles might not open the door, but that if she was a ―public menace‖ he could authorize the officers to break her door down. Before Vitanza answered, however, Judge O'Toole stated that he did not think that such force was not necessary at that time, a point with which Vitanza agreed. Judge O'Toole then stated that if there was a public emergency or a ―life and limb cut situation‖ it might be different, but that there was no need to escalate the situation for fear that Artiles would ―take a swing‖ at one of the officers. Vitanza again agreed, declaring that there was no need to ―get in over our heads.‖ Judge O'Toole concluded the conversation by advising Vitanza that he was at home if Vitanza needed him further. During their conversation, Judge O'Toole did not administer an oath to Vitanza.

After speaking with Judge O'Toole, Vitanza informed Carpenter over the radio that ―Artiles made multiple 911 calls reporting a false emergency and that he was typing up the complaints at th[at] time.‖ McCarthy Aff. Ex. E; Hershkowitz Ex. B at 92:2-25. The complaint warrants that were ultimately generated-and signed by Vitanza upon oath-were signed by a proxy for Judge O'Toole (the signatory's name appears on the signature line, followed by the words ―as per Judge‖), as well as another officer who had administered the oath. McCarthy Aff. Ex. F. The complaint warrants indicate that Judge O'Toole had set bail, and that probable cause had been found in support of their issuance. Id.

Carpenter, Martino, and Hermans proceeded to 3502 Appleton Way to arrest Artiles, and Vitanza stayed back to fill out the complaint warrants.*fn7 Hershkowitz Cert. Ex. B. at 92:22-24. The record is somewhat unclear whether Vitanza himself returned to Artiles' residence a second time. Vitanza's deposition testimony seems to indicate that he did proceed to the residence a second time, after he had spoken to Judge O'Toole. See Hershkowitz Cert. Ex. B. at 92:14-24.

In any event, by the time the officers entered the residence to arrest Artiles, Vitanza had left the scene and returned to police headquarters. Id. at 93:19-96:7; Artiles 1/22/08 Dep. at 153:15-17. As Martino, Carpenter, and Hermans arrived on the scene, at approximately 10:26 p.m., Artiles called 911 for the second time. She stated that she needed help from the police, who were going to hurt her. She said that the police were mad at her because she, as an ―abused woman,‖ would not press charges against her boyfriend. The dispatcher asked whether it was an emergency. Raising her voice, Artiles said that her ex-boyfriend wanted to kill her but because she did not want to press charges, the police wanted to hurt and arrest her. The dispatcher told Artiles that the police meant her no harm, and emphasized that she had called 911 again. Artiles again said that she just wanted to be left alone, but the police wanted to arrest her because her boyfriend had ―beat [her] senseless.‖ The dispatcher then informed her that the officers would seek authorization to knock her door down if she did not step outside to allow the officers to place her under arrest.

Meanwhile, because Artiles would not initially open the door upon the officers' request, Martino and Hermans-who had arrived on the scene to assist with the arrest-left to return to their patrol car while Carpenter stayed at the scene. Hershkowitz Cert. Exs. C at 25:25-26:19; B at 92:25-93:6. At some point, Artiles finally opened the door, at which time Carpenter proceeded inside to place her under arrest. Def. Br. at 6; McCarthy Ex. E. Martino and Hermans returned to the residence at this time to provide assistance. Hershkowitz Cert. Ex. C at 26:25. The record is somewhat unclear whether they arrived before, during, or after the actual arrest.

D. The Arrest and Aftermath

Upon permitting Carpenter to enter her residence to effect the arrest, Artiles ―took one step back.‖ Artiles 1/22/08 Dep. at 155:22-157:25. She testified at her deposition that she believed three officers were at the scene, but that only two officers, Carpenter and Hermans, entered when she opened the door. Id. at 155:13-14. Carpenter's police report states that the following occurred upon his entrance:

I entered the residence and Artiles sat down on the stairs. I advised her that she was being arrested for reporting a false emergency via 9-1-1. Artiles was completely uncooperative . . . . Artiles refused to comply when I ordered her to stand up and put her hands behind her back. I handcuffed Artiles' right wrist and turned her around to handcuff her left wrist. Artiles refused to turn around and held her left wrist to prevent me from bringing her left wrist behind her back. . . . Artiles refused to put on any footwear, however[,] we brought slippers to headquarters for her along with her purse. . . .

McCarthy Aff. Ex. E. The structure of her condominium unit is contrary to her claim that she took ―one step back‖; the stairs upon which she sat down are approximately 20 feet from the entrance. McCarthy Aff. Ex. L at 12. Artiles testified that when Carpenter handcuffed her, she did not attempt to pull or run away. Artiles 1/22/08 Dep. at 158:22-159:4. She stated, consistent with Carpenter's report, that Hermans, who by this time had arrived on the scene, went to her upstairs bedroom and retrieved her slippers and purse. Id. at 159:5-160:19. She claimed that Hermans did not give her an opportunity to put her slippers on. Id. at 159:10-16. As the officers escorted her outside, she avers that ―[t]hey start[ed] dragging me down the stairs and outside into the cold.‖ Id. at 162:5-6. When asked what she meant by ―dragging down the stairs‖ meant, she answered, ―[t]hey were yanking me, pulling me by -- you know, my arms grabbing me by my arms. . . . They're pulling me down the stairs -- each one has me gripped by [my] arms and they're taking me to the car.‖ Id. at 162:9-18. She stated that she was not resisting, but as part of police procedure, the officers held her by the arms hard and, in doing so, were hurting her. Id. at 162:19-163:1. Finally, she admitted that she was not carried, but she walked ―willingly.‖ Id. at 163:2-12. Upon being placed in the squad car, Artiles claimed several times at her deposition that one of the officers stepped on her toe. See id. at 162:9-12; 165:4-8; 167:9-13; 168:1-17. The Court discusses this issue more fully below. After being placed in the car, Artiles stated that the ride to HPD was ―uneventful.‖ Id. at 169:15-17.

Upon arriving at the precinct, Carpenter led Artiles into a processing room and handcuffed her left hand to a bar under the desk in the center of the room. The next 21/2 hours were captured by the stationary security camera, and the resulting videotape is part of the record. The Court discusses the officers' and Artiles' actions in more detail below insofar as they are relevant to the legal analysis of plaintiff's constitutional claims. Briefly, however, during the first 45 minutes ...


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