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Lee v. Employees of Union Township. Municipal Court

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

March 28, 2018

GEVOANNA KWASHEDA LEE, Plaintiff,
v.
EMPLOYEES OF UNION TOWNSHIP MUNICIPAL COURT, Defendant.

          OPINION

          KEVIN MCNULTY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Ms. Gevoanna Kwasheda Lee asserts several claims against the Employees of the Union Township Municipal Court, alleging violations of the New Jersey constitution and several federal laws. Now before the court is the defendants' motion to dismiss the complaint. For the following reasons, the motion to dismiss is granted.

         I. BACKGROUND[1]

         A. Factual History

         Ms. Gevoanna Kwasheda Lee ("Ms. Lee") sues Employees of the Union Township Municipal Court. She names specific employees-i.e., Adedeji J.Akere ("Akere"), Pat Nasta, and other Jane/John Doe employees for alleged violations of the New Jersey constitution and several federal laws. (Compl. ¶¶ 1-4). The chronology of Ms. Lee's complaint is not clearly presented. I attempt to organize the events in sequence.

         Ms. Lee seems to have received a ticket for driving without a license. (Lee Aff. ¶¶ 1-3, 12-14). She received an accompanying notice to appear in Union Township Municipal Court because of the ticket. (Lee Aff. ¶¶ 12-14). She claims she did not consent to the Township's jurisdiction and did not sign her ticket. (Lee Aff. ¶¶ 12-14).

         At the Municipal Court hearing, the judge allegedly told her, "these documents you get from the internet don't work." (Compl. ¶ 11). Ms. Lee said these comments were made in a mocking tone, she felt that the judge was not impartial, and she "did not feel safe." (Compl. ¶¶ 11-12). Ms. Lee said she did not attend her trial because of her negative experience at the hearing and because she would have to miss work. (Compl. ¶ 12). She also felt that "her affidavits or motions would not work in court." (Compl. ¶ 12).

         The Municipal Court then issued a warrant for her arrest based on her failure to appear. (Lee Aff. ¶ 15). She allegedly received "threatening mail" requesting that she pay her bail and attend court. (Compl. ¶¶ 13-15, 19). Akere stopped Ms. Lee while she was driving based on the warrant for her arrest. (Lee Aff. ¶ 19). Akere allegedly requested her license, registration, and insurance "under the pretense of being a police officer." (Lee Aff. ¶¶ 16, 19).

         Akere allegedly did not read the Miranda warning and removed Ms. Lee from her car. (Compl. ¶ 16). At the scene, an officer asked her "Do you know why you are being arrested?" and Ms. Lee responded, "No the arresting officer didn't mention such." (Compl. ¶ 17).

         The officers took Ms. Lee to a holding cell "against her will and consent." (Compl. ¶ 16). The officers did not allow her to keep certain articles of clothing-i.e., she was allowed to keep either her hooded shirt or her jacket but apparently not both. (Compl. ¶ 18). She was then transferred from the holding cell to Somerset County Jail until her brother arrived with bail money. (Compl. ¶I8).

         Ms. Lee claims that she "is by nature free to travel anywhere she pleases" without a driver's license, under the New Jersey constitution. (Lee Aff. ¶¶ 1-3). She states that she did not knowingly relinquish her rights by obtaining a driver's license. (Lee Aff. ¶¶ 1-3). Nor did she know that carrying a driver's license was necessary to drive on die highways for non-commercial uses. (Lee Aff. ¶¶ 10-11).

         Ms. Lee asserts several causes of action against defendant under federal law and the New Jersey constitution:

         ■ Count One: False impersonation of an officer under 18U.S.C.§912 (specifically naming Akere) (Compl. ¶ 16);

         ■ Count Two: Deprivation / conspiracy against rights under 18 U.S.C. §§ 241-242 (Compl. ¶ 17);

         ■ Count Three: Kidnapping under 18 U.S.C. § I2OI(I)(2) (Compl. ¶ 18);

         ■ Count Four: Neglect to prevent under 42 U.S.C. § 1986 (Compl. ¶ 19);

         ■ Count Five: Obstructing justice and intimidating a party under 42 U.S.C. § 1985(2) (Compl. ¶ 20);

         ■ Count Six: Violations of the New Jersey constitution, article 1, paragraphs 1, 2, 7, and 12 (Compl. ¶ 21);

         ■ Count Seven: Extortion by officers or employees of the United States under 18 ...


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