Category Archives: 2016 Chua v. City of Los Angeles

Charmaine Chua V. City Of Los Angeles — Motion For Leave To Present Classwide Damages Filed — Hearing Scheduled For January 14, 2019 At 8:30 A.M. Before Judge John Kronstadt — First Street Courthouse Courtroom 10B

UPDATE: This hearing has been changed to February 4, 2019 at 8:30 a.m. The trial has been reset as well. The new dates are set here in this order.

Almost three years ago now, in January 2016, Charmaine Chua and others sued the City of Los Angeles for civil rights violations arising from 2014 protests over the killing of Michael Brown in 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri. In May 2017 the case was certified as a class action, but it seems like not that much has happened since then, I guess maybe because it still seemed like there was some chance that it might settle.

Well, evidently that’s not going to happen, and the case is revving up again. In September of this year Judge John Kronstadt issued a scheduling order which, in part and barring settlement, which didn’t happen, ordered the plaintiffs ” to file a motion (“Motion”) for leave to present claims of alleged general damages on a classwide basis at trial of the corresponding claims for liability, which shall include a proposed trial plan for the presentation of evidence as to such alleged damages.”

I guess the point is that usually in a lawsuit the plaintiff can get damages to make up for what the defendant’s conduct cost them but if they’re suing for so-called general damages, where no specific objective dollar value can be assigned, it’s necessary to argue that such payments are appropriate. Anyway, as always, I’m not a lawyer, but that seems to be what the motion, filed by plaintiffs on November 5, 2018, seems to be arguing.1

It seems that the way to make this argument in cases of police misconduct, false imprisonment, and so on, is to introduce an expert witness who has studied and/or been involved in many such cases. The plaintiffs also filed, therefore, a declaration by Michael Avery, who analyzes more than 20 cases of police misconduct involving wrongful imprisonment in which, at least in the class action ones, victims were paid between $1,800 and $23,000 as compensation for their loss of liberty. There is a transcription of this after the break, along with links to other interesting materials and a little background as well.

Note that the hearing on this motion is scheduled for January 14, 2019 at 8:30 a.m. in John Kronstadt’s courtroom in the First Street Federal Courthouse, which is 10B. Don’t be misled by the wrong date which appears on a bunch of these pleadings. It was an error, as reflected in this notice of error filed with the court a couple days ago.
Continue reading Charmaine Chua V. City Of Los Angeles — Motion For Leave To Present Classwide Damages Filed — Hearing Scheduled For January 14, 2019 At 8:30 A.M. Before Judge John Kronstadt — First Street Courthouse Courtroom 10B

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2016 Lawsuit Filed By LAPD Critic Patti Beers Against The City Of Los Angeles, Charlie Beck, And Assorted Other Cops, Has Settled In Its Entirety — However, The Terms Of The Settlement Are Not Yet Known

This is just the quickest of notes to announce that mere moments ago radical videographer Patti Beers, who sued the City and a bunch of cops in 2016 over their abuse of her during the 2014 protests about Michael Brown and Ferguson, MO, announced that she’d settled all her claims and the City’s going to pay her an as-yet-undisclosed amount of money, some of which will no doubt go to her attorney, the renowned and heroic Morgan Ricketts.

You can read some details in my earlier post on the suit and you can read the notice of settlement, just filed on PACER about ten minutes ago, right here. Note that this settlement leaves the ongoing associated class action suit known as Chua v. City of LA untouched as far as I can see. That one’s scheduled for trial in November 2018. This one’s over. Also, turn the page for a transcription of the notice of settlement.
Continue reading 2016 Lawsuit Filed By LAPD Critic Patti Beers Against The City Of Los Angeles, Charlie Beck, And Assorted Other Cops, Has Settled In Its Entirety — However, The Terms Of The Settlement Are Not Yet Known

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Order Filed This Morning Certifies Chua V. City Of Los Angeles, Federal Civil Rights Case Arising Out Of 2014 Michael Brown Protests, As A Class Action With Some Minor Exceptions

California-centralSee this article from the LA Times and our previous posts on the subject for the background to this post. All of the filings can be found here.

Last July the plaintiffs in this monumental federal civil rights suit against the City of Los Angeles for the reprehensible behavior of the LAPD in 2014 with respect to protests arising out of the Michael Brown killing filed a motion to have the suit certified as a class action. In November, Judge Kronstadt announced that he was pretty much inclined to certify it but that he wanted to see some supplemental briefs. So that happened, and this morning he filed filed a comprehensive order certifying the case as a class action with only a couple of minor1 exceptions. He also granted the plaintiffs leave to amend their complaint in response to his order. Turn the page for links to a few other items that have been filed in the last few days.
Continue reading Order Filed This Morning Certifies Chua V. City Of Los Angeles, Federal Civil Rights Case Arising Out Of 2014 Michael Brown Protests, As A Class Action With Some Minor Exceptions

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Many New Documents: CCEA Emails, Venice Beach BID Emails, Carol Schatz Freakout, Chua v. City of LA

A rare photograph of MK.org secret headquarters and Fortress of Solitude, located in an undisclosed location in the heart of North Central Hollywood.
A rare photograph of MK.org secret headquarters and Fortress of Solitude, located in an undisclosed location in the heart of North Central Hollywood.
Happy Thanksgiving, friends! Today I have an unanalyzed document dump for you. There’s a lot of fabulous material here, and I’ll be writing about much of it over1 the next few days. For now, though, there’s just a bare inventory, which you can find directly after the break.
Continue reading Many New Documents: CCEA Emails, Venice Beach BID Emails, Carol Schatz Freakout, Chua v. City of LA

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Judge Kronstadt Tentatively Inclined To Grant Class Certification In Chua V. City of LA But Has Some Concerns. National Lawyers Guild Responds With Supplemental Brief As Ordered. NLG Is Willing To Talk But City of LA Uninterested In Settling At This Time.

Carol Sobel,  plaintiffs' attorney in Chua v. City of Los Angeles
Carol Sobel, plaintiffs’ attorney in Chua v. City of Los Angeles
In July of this year the plaintiffs in Chua v. City of Los Angeles, based on LAPD misconduct during 2014 protests concerning Michael Brown, filed a motion for certification as a class action suit. The City of Los Angeles did not oppose the motion. But, of course, even if the parties to a suit agree, these things are still up to the Judge. A hearing on the motion was held on November 7, and Judge Kronstadt stated his “tentative views that [he] is inclined to grant in part Plaintiffs’ Motion for Class Certification. However, evidently he still had some questions about his decision, because he instructed the plaintiffs to supplement their motion for class certification with some additional briefs, which were due and filed last Monday, the 14th of November. They are linked to directly below, and you can find some quotations and uninformed discussion after the break.

Interestingly, those minutes also note that the City isn’t presently interested in settling matters:

The Court confers with counsel regarding settlement. Plaintiffs are open to participating in a settlement conference now while defense counsel believes it is premature at this time.

Continue reading Judge Kronstadt Tentatively Inclined To Grant Class Certification In Chua V. City of LA But Has Some Concerns. National Lawyers Guild Responds With Supplemental Brief As Ordered. NLG Is Willing To Talk But City of LA Uninterested In Settling At This Time.

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Chua v. City of L.A. to Remain Unconsolidated With Other LAPD-Acting-Badly Cases, Stay With Judge John Kronstadt

Federal Judge John Kronstadt.
Federal Judge John Kronstadt.
See this article from the LA Times and our previous posts on the subject for the background to this post. All of the filings can be found here.

Mere moments ago, Judge John Kronstadt, before whom Chua v. City of L.A. is being heard, filed an order declining to transfer or combine this case with a couple other cases arising from the same set of anti-police-brutality protests in the Fall of 2014.1 This is evidently in response to this Notice of Related Cases filed last Wednesday by the plaintiffs. I’m not sure what it all means, but the Judge sounds a little cranky, as you may see after the break if that’s the way your pleasure tends.
Continue reading Chua v. City of L.A. to Remain Unconsolidated With Other LAPD-Acting-Badly Cases, Stay With Judge John Kronstadt

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Discovery Plan Filed in Chua v. Los Angeles, Lawsuit Arising From LAPD Misconduct During 2014 Michael Brown Protests

California-centralSee this article from the LA Times and our previous posts on the subject for the background to this post. All of the filings can be found here.

Tonight two new filings in this case hit PACER. First and most interesting there is this Joint Discovery Plan. It has statements of the case from both the plaintiffs and the defendant:

PLAINTIFFS:
This case involves the detention and arrests of individuals in November, 2014 during several days of protests related to the events in Ferguson, Missouri and the death of Michael Brown. The case is filed as a class action based on two incidents: one occurring at Beverly and Alvarado in which the sub-class was subject to detention, warrantless search and interrogation before being released by Defendants. The second incident involves a mass arrest at 6th and Hope in which Plaintiffs contend that they were not given adequate dispersal notice before being surrounded by the LAPD and arrested. The group at 6 th & Hope also contend that they were held in jail for approximately a day when they should have been cited and released pursuant to California Penal Code § 853.6. Both groups also allege that their privacy rights were violated by the collection of personal information and the storage and dissemination of that information by the LAPD and to other law enforcement entities.

Continue reading Discovery Plan Filed in Chua v. Los Angeles, Lawsuit Arising From LAPD Misconduct During 2014 Michael Brown Protests

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City of Los Angeles Will Not (At This Time, Anyway) Oppose Class Action Certification in Chua v. City of LA

California-centralSee this article from the LA Times and our previous posts on the subject for the background to this post. All of the filings can be found here.

Last month the plaintiffs in Chua v. City of Los Angeles filed a ton of material asking for the case to be certified as a class action. Today the defendant, the City of Los Angeles, filed a notice of non-opposition to that request. They’re doing it for the most altruistic reasons ever:

…in order to conserve party and Court resources, Defendants hereby state that they do not oppose Plaintiffs’ Motion for Class Certification … at this time.

And what have they given up through their kind-hearted and selfless concern for the resources of the court? Well, pretty much nothing:

Since discovery has not yet commenced, Defendants reserve the right to seek decertification of the classes certified (in whole or in part) should discovery reveal that certification is not appropriate.

Obviously these are bog-standard opening moves in a federal class action suit, but they strike me1 as amusing, so I’m sharing with you, lucky reader!
Continue reading City of Los Angeles Will Not (At This Time, Anyway) Oppose Class Action Certification in Chua v. City of LA

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Motion to Certify Class Action in Chua v. City of LA Filed Today, Along With Extensive Supporting Declarations; Hearing Set for Monday, October 24, 2016, at 8 a.m.

California-centralSee this article from the LA Times and our previous posts on the subject for the background to this post. All of the filings can be found here.

Today the plaintiffs in the case Chua v. City of Los Angeles filed the following pleadings:

Continue reading Motion to Certify Class Action in Chua v. City of LA Filed Today, Along With Extensive Supporting Declarations; Hearing Set for Monday, October 24, 2016, at 8 a.m.

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Answer to Chua v. City of L.A. Filed, Court Orders Scheduling Conference for September 12, 2016

California-centralSee this article from the LA Times and our previous post on the subject for the background to this post.

On June 1 the City of Los Angeles filed its response to the the initial complaint. I don’t have much to say about it. They deny everything and put forth a few affirmative defenses which all pretty much amount to “they didn’t actually accuse us of anything so we must not have done it.” Also, in some other routine news, Judge John Kronstadt issued an order just today setting a scheduling conference for September 12 at 1:30 p.m.1 This doesn’t mean much, except I think once this conference is set up the parties are meant to get serious about discovery, which, at least in the last few federal cases I’ve been following, has been an exciting time pleadingswise.
Continue reading Answer to Chua v. City of L.A. Filed, Court Orders Scheduling Conference for September 12, 2016

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