University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
page permalink
Case Name Gordon v. City of Moreno CJ-CA-0010
Docket / Court EDCV-09-688-SGL ( C.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Criminal Justice (Other)
Attorney Organization ACLU of Southern California
Case Summary
On April 8, 2009, a group of African American barbers and barbershop owners filed a lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §1983 and the Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. §§ 2201(a) & 2202 in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, Eastern Division- Riverside. The plaintiffs, ... read more >
On April 8, 2009, a group of African American barbers and barbershop owners filed a lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. §1983 and the Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. §§ 2201(a) & 2202 in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, Eastern Division- Riverside. The plaintiffs, represented by lawyers from the ACLU-Foundation of Southern California, asked the court for declaratory, injunctive and other appropriate relief, claiming that the Defendantshad conducted racially motivated searches of their barbershops without warrants, constituting violations of their right to Equal Protection and their federal and state constitutional right to be free from unreasonable search and seizures.

Specifically, the plaintiffs claimed that the City and its Police Department had conducted racially motivated searches of their barbershops under the false pretext that the searches were a part of the State Cosmetology Board's health code inspection enforcement program. The plaintiffs alleged that armed police officers entered their barbershops without a warrant and conducted extensive searches of the premises unrelated to any potential code or health violations. While inspectors from the State Board of Barbering and Cosmetology accompanied the police officers, the Plaintiffs allege that the police officer's conduct during the searches was more like a narcotics raid than that of a civil code inspection. More specifically, the police officers blocked the front and back entrances of the shops and detained anyone who protested against the searches.

On a motion to dismiss, the district court dismissed the equal protection claim against the individual Code Enforcement and Board inspectors for a failure to state a claim that they had conducted the "raids" with discriminatory intent. However, the district court denied the motion to dismiss as to all of the other claims.

Soon after, the Plaintiffs began to settle their claims with the defendants. In a stipulation with the Director of the State Board of Barbering and Cosmetology, the Board agreed to change its policies regarding code enforcement. Specifically, the Board agreed to include in its Inspector Manual clarifications regarding its Anti-Discrimination Policy in Enforcement Actions and a statement of its policy regarding joint inspections with outside agencies. The statement regarding joint inspections with outside agencies affirmed that the Board would not provide outside law enforcement agencies with a pretext for achieving any law enforcement purpose other than code enforcement. Furthermore, the joint inspection policy reaffirmed that the participation of board inspectors would not be used to justify warrantless searches of regulated premises by other law enforcement agencies. Additionally the board agreed to expand the anti-discrimination training it gives to its code enforcement inspectors. Lastly, the board agreed to pay $62,910.30 in attorney's fees and costs.

The county defendants agreed to pay $32,500 in damages and $66,500 in costs and attorneys' fees. Furthermore, the county agreed to send its supervisory law enforcement staff to the Museum of Tolerance's "Tools for Tolerance for Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice" program. Moreover, the county sheriff's department agreed to send its supervisors to meet with members of the Los Angeles Police Department to discuss its procedures for biased policing complaint investigations and adjudications.

The court retained jurisdiction for three years to ensure that the settlement is enforced.

Justin Benson - 05/23/2011


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology
City of Moreno Valley
Plaintiff Description Barbers who own and work in predominately African American Barbershops
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU of Southern California
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2009 - 2012
Case Closing Year 2011
Case Ongoing No
Docket(s)
EDCV-09-688-SGL (C.D. Cal.) 02/07/2011
CJ-CA-0010-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Defendant Underwood's Memorandum of Points and Authorities in Support of Motion to Dismiss First Amended Complaint 05/11/2009
CJ-CA-0010-0006 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
First Amended Complaint 05/22/2009
CJ-CA-0010-0001 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Notice of Motion and Motion to Dismiss First Amended Complaint; Memorandum of Points and Authorities 06/05/2009
CJ-CA-0010-0005 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Notice of Motion and Motion to Dismiss First Amended Complaint 06/11/2009
CJ-CA-0010-0007 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Motion of [Code Enforcement Officer] Defendants to Dismiss First Amended Complaint Under FRCP 12(b)(6) 07/06/2009 (2009 WL 4308213)
CJ-CA-0010-0004 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Opposition to Motion of [Code Enforcement Officers] to Dismiss First Amended Complaint 08/03/2009 (2009 WL 4308214)
CJ-CA-0010-0002 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Reply of [Code Enforcement Officer] Defendants in Support of Their Motion to Dismiss First Amended Complaint under FRCP 12(b)(6) 08/10/2009 (2009 WL 4308215)
CJ-CA-0010-0003 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Granting Defendants' Motion to Dismiss but with Leave to Amend; Order Denying Defendants' Motion to Dismiss; Order Holding in Abeyance Ruling on Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Pending Completion of Jurisdictional Discovery 08/31/2009 (687 F.Supp.2d 930) (C.D. Cal.)
CJ-CA-0010-0008 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Settlement and General Release Agreement 12/17/2009
CJ-CA-0010-0015 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and [Proposed] Order Re Settlement Between Plaintiffs and State Defendants 06/04/2010
CJ-CA-0010-0010 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and Order Re Settlement Between Plaintiffs and State Defendants 06/15/2010 (C.D. Cal.)
CJ-CA-0010-0009 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and [Proposed] Order Re Settlement Between Plaintiffs and County Defendants 11/05/2010
CJ-CA-0010-0011 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Release of All Claims 11/05/2010
CJ-CA-0010-0012 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Stipulation and Order Re Settlement Between Plaintiffs and County Defendants 11/09/2010
CJ-CA-0010-0014 PDF | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Larson, Stephen G. (C.D. Cal.) [Magistrate]
CJ-CA-0010-0008
Segal, Suzanne H. (C.D. Cal.) [Magistrate]
CJ-CA-0010-9000
Zouhary, Jack (N.D. Ohio)
CJ-CA-0010-0009 | CJ-CA-0010-0011 | CJ-CA-0010-0014 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Bibring, Peter (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0001 | CJ-CA-0010-0002 | CJ-CA-0010-0010 | CJ-CA-0010-0011 | CJ-CA-0010-0012 | CJ-CA-0010-0014 | CJ-CA-0010-0015 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Eliasberg, Peter J. (California)
CJ-CA-0010-9000
Puri, Rishi (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0001 | CJ-CA-0010-0015 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Rosenbaum, Mark Dale (California)
CJ-CA-0010-9000
Shartin, Stacy D (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0002 | CJ-CA-0010-0012 | CJ-CA-0010-0014 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Bell, Michael A. (California)
CJ-CA-0010-9000
Brown, Michael Anthony (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0003 | CJ-CA-0010-0004 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Brown, Edmund G. Jr. (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0006 | CJ-CA-0010-0007
Buess, William Alan (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0015 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Coates, Timothy Towery (California)
CJ-CA-0010-9000
De Kervor, Diane Elisabeth (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0006 | CJ-CA-0010-0007 | CJ-CA-0010-0015 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Hansen, Robert Leory (California)
CJ-CA-0010-9000
Herrick, Robert Dakin (California)
CJ-CA-0010-9000
Ledakis, James M (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0006 | CJ-CA-0010-0007
Lockwood, Christopher D (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0005 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Porter, John M (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0005 | CJ-CA-0010-0011 | CJ-CA-0010-0012 | CJ-CA-0010-0014 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Wolfe, Richard Frederick (California)
CJ-CA-0010-0010 | CJ-CA-0010-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
page permalink

- top of page -