Editor: David Reiss
Brooklyn Law School

December 13, 2013

Michigan Court Finds That Defendants Were Not Acting Under Color of State Law

By Ebube Okoli

The court in deciding El-Jabazwe v. Wells Fargo Home Mortg., 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 149854 ( E.D. Mich. Oct. 18, 2013) denied the plaintiff’s motions and granted the defendants’ motions.

Plaintiff’s complaint listed the following Counts: 42 U.S.C. §1983 (Count I); 42 U.S.C. § 1985(3) (Count II); 42 U.S.C. § 1983: refusing or neglecting to prevent (Count III); Malicious Abuse of Process (Count IV); 18 U.S.C. §§ 241 and 242 (Count V); Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress (Count VI); and Mail Fraud (Count VIII). The Court dismissed Plaintiff’s state-law claims (Counts IV and VI) on March 6, 2013.

The court found that the plaintiff’s argument under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(c) rested solely on conclusory statements. The court found plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment is similarly deficient. The court noted that plaintiff wholly failed to meet the evidentiary burdens required under Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(c) and 56(a), and thus the court denied both of Plaintiff’s motions. Lastly, the court found that even when construing the facts in a light most favorable to the plaintiff, Counts I and III must be dismissed against the defendants, as they were not acting under color of state law.

Consequently, pursuant to E.D. Mich. L.R. 7.1(f)(2), the court ordered that the motions be resolved on the briefs submitted, without oral argument. The court then denied the plaintiff’s motions and granted the defendants’ motions.

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