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Case Name Youth Justice Coalition v. City of Los Angeles CJ-CA-0018
Docket / Court 2:16-cv-07932-VBF-RAO ( C.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Criminal Justice (Other)
Attorney Organization ACLU of Southern California
Rosen, Bien, Galvan & Grunfeld
Case Summary
On October 25, 2016, the Youth Justice Coalition and two Los Angeles men filed this lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Central District of California. The plaintiffs alleged that the City of Los Angeles had violated the two individual plaintiffs’ due process rights through its ... read more >
On October 25, 2016, the Youth Justice Coalition and two Los Angeles men filed this lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Central District of California. The plaintiffs alleged that the City of Los Angeles had violated the two individual plaintiffs’ due process rights through its practices in obtaining and enforcing “gang injunctions.” They further claimed that the practice harmed the Youth Justice Coalition, by diverting valuable and limited resources from the Coalition’s mission in order to defend these individuals’ rights. The plaintiffs sued the City, the City Attorney, and the Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department. In order to remedy these violations, the plaintiffs sought class certification; a declaration that the City’s gang injunction practices violated the United States Constitution and the California Constitution; temporary and permanent injunctions prohibiting the enforcement of gang injunctions; and attorneys’ fees. The case was assigned to Judge Valerie Baker Fairbank.

The complaint detailed the process of obtaining and enforcing gang injunctions, which had been pioneered by the City of Los Angeles. After identifying a target gang, the City would bring a civil action against the gang in a state court proceeding. Because gangs are not legally organized entities, this type of civil action invariably resulted in a default judgment against the named gang and its members. The resulting injunctions prohibited gang members from engaging in a variety of otherwise lawful activities, such as wearing certain clothing, appearing in public with friends and family, or carrying a cell phone. Violators of such injunctions could be (and frequently were) charged with contempt of court, punishable by six months in jail and a $1,000 fine. There were 46 separate gang injunctions covering as many as 10,000 residents of Los Angeles; in no case had the City had to litigate on the merits of a case before obtaining a gang injunction.

The two individual plaintiffs had both been served with gang injunctions, and as a result, they had been forced to limit daily actions within their community. One plaintiff feared going out in public with his father, and the other chose to stop taking union jobs in a certain neighborhood for fear of being stopped by the police.

On December 15, 2016, the court granted a joint stipulation dismissing the City Attorney and the Chief of Police as defendants. In exchange for this dismissal, the City agreed not to file any motion to dismiss the plaintiffs’ complaint.

On January 27, 2017, the court granted one of the individual plaintiffs’ unopposed motion for a preliminary injunction barring the City from enforcing the gang injunction against him. That same day, the court granted a joint stipulation to stay the case, pending settlement discussions. The stay continued for several months as the parties continued to negotiate a settlement agreement and submit status reports. The stay was ultimately lifted on July 3, 2017, because the parties had determined that they could not come to agreement.

The case was reassigned to Judge Virginia A. Phillips on July 21, 2017. Judge Phillips held a hearing on August 30, 2017, as to the second plaintiff’s motion for a preliminary injunction, which was granted on September 7, 2020. This injunction barred the City from enforcing the gang injunction against the second individual plaintiff.

In October, the plaintiffs moved for class certification of “[a]ll persons currently, or who are in the future, subject to a Los Angeles Gang Injunction who were not named as defendants in or otherwise parties to the civil nuisance abatement action to obtain that injunction, and who do not have contempt proceedings for violation of an injunction currently proceeding against them.” The defendants agreed to this class definition on November 6, 2017.

Early the next year, on January 29, 2018, the plaintiffs requested that the court expand the preliminary injunctions to cover all class members; the court granted this motion on March 15, 2018. 264 F.Supp.3d 1057. (By this point in time, the City had removed as many as 8,500 individuals from its list of people covered by its gang injunctions, presumably as a result of this and similar litigation; the class was therefore composed of approximately 1,500 members, rather than 10,000.)

The City appealed the expanded preliminary injunction to the Ninth Circuit on April 13, 2018. On November 7, 2019 (and again on January 8, 2020), after several months of mediation, the Ninth Circuit’s Mediator instructed the City to submit a motion or a stipulation to dismiss the appeal. When the City failed to submit the required motion or stipulation, the Ninth Circuit deemed the failure “a request for voluntary dismissal,” and dismissed the appeal on February 20, 2020.

As of July 31, 2020, no further proceedings have occurred in the district court.

Gabriela Hybel - 12/27/2017
Keagan Potts - 03/18/2019
- 08/03/2020


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Due Process: Procedural Due Process
Content of Injunction
Preliminary relief granted
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
Law-enforcement
Discrimination-basis
Race discrimination
General
Access to lawyers or judicial system
Courts
Disparate Impact
National Origin/Ethnicity
Hispanic
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Private Plaintiff
Race
Black
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
State law
Defendant(s) City Attorney of Los Angeles
City of Los Angeles
Los Angeles Police Department
Plaintiff Description Two men subject to City of Los Angeles “gang injunctions,” a class of Los Angeles residents subject to similar injunctions, and the Youth Justice Coalition.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU of Southern California
Rosen, Bien, Galvan & Grunfeld
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Source of Relief Litigation
Order Duration 2018 - n/a
Filed 10/25/2016
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
  Youth Justice Coalition v. City of Los Angeles
aclusocal.org
Date: Mar. 15, 2018
By: American Civil Liberties Union
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
2:16-cv-07932-VBF-RAO (C.D. Cal.)
CJ-CA-0018-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/26/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 2]
CJ-CA-0018-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/25/2016
Source: ACLU
Order Dismissing Complaint Without Prejudice as to Defendants Beck and Feuer Pursuant to Joint Stipulation of All Named Parties [ECF# 37] (C.D. Cal.)
CJ-CA-0018-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/15/2016
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 69] (C.D. Cal.)
CJ-CA-0018-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/27/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order GRANTING Plaintiff Peter Arellano’s Motion for Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 106] (264 F.Supp.3d 1057) (C.D. Cal.)
CJ-CA-0018-0004.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 09/07/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Granting Plaintiff Peter Arellano’s Motion for Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 106] (264 F.Supp.3d 1057) (C.D. Cal.)
CJ-CA-0018-0007.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 09/07/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Fairbank, Valerie Baker (C.D. Cal.) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-0002 | CJ-CA-0018-0003 | CJ-CA-0018-9000
Oliver, Rozella A Court not on record [Magistrate] show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Phillips, Virginia A. (C.D. Cal.) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-0004 | CJ-CA-0018-0007 | CJ-CA-0018-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Arulanantham, Rekha E (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Bibring, Peter (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Calderaro, Catherine Wagner (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
El−Khouri, Adele M (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Fruitwala, Aditi (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Garcia−Leys, Sean M (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Green, Joshua D. (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-0001 | CJ-CA-0018-9000
Iguina, Carmen G. (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Jhai, Maria (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-0001 | CJ-CA-0018-9000
Kreilkamp, Jacob S. (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-0001 | CJ-CA-0018-9000
Mandhania, Ankur (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-0001 | CJ-CA-0018-9000
Ochoa, Melanie Rose Penny (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Sargent, Amelia L. B. (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-0001 | CJ-CA-0018-9000
Smolowe, Laura Danielle (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-0001 | CJ-CA-0018-9000
Wagner, Catherine A. (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Ursea, Agnes Patricia (California) show/hide docs
CJ-CA-0018-9000

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