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Loeffler v. City of Anoka

United States District Court, D. Minnesota

January 12, 2015

Jennie Marie Loeffler, Plaintiff,
v.
City of Anoka; City of Burnsville; Dakota County; Dakota County Communications Center; City of Duluth; City of Eagan; City of Fairmont; City of Farmington; City of Hancock; Isanti County; Mille Lacs County; City of Minneapolis; City of Morris; Renville County; Rice County; City of Richfield; City of Roseville; City of St. Francis; City of St. Paul; City of Staples; Wright County; Yellow Medicine County; Michael Campion, acting in his individual capacity as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety; Ramona Dohman, acting in her individual capacity as Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety; John and Jane Does (1-30), acting in their individual capacity as officers, supervisors, staff, employees, independent contractors or agents of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety; Entity Does (1-50), including cities, counties, municipalities, and other entities sited in Minnesota departments and agencies; A Female Officer to be Later Named, Acting in Her Individual Capacity as a Law-Enforcement Officer for the City of Duluth; City of Lakeville; City of Mankato; City of Milaca; City of New Prague; City of Pequot Lakes; and Saint Louis County, Defendants

Order Filed: December 19, 2014

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[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

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For Plaintiff: Lorenz F. Fett, Jr., Sonia L. Miller-Van Oort, and Jonathan A. Strauss, Sapientia Law Group PLLC, Minneapolis, MN.

For City of St. Paul, Defendant: Portia M. Hampton-Flowers, St. Paul City Attorney, St. Paul, MN.

For City of Minneapolis, Defendant: Timothy S. Skarda, Minneapolis City Attorney's Office, Minneapolis, MN.

Page 990

ORDER

The Honorable Michael J. Davis, Chief United States District Judge.

Based upon the Report and Recommendation bye United States Magistrate Judge Tony N. Leung dated December 19, 2014 [Docket No. 126], along with all the files and records, and no objections to said Recommendation having been filed, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:

1. Defendant City of Saint Paul's Motions for Judgment on the Pleadings, Summary Judgment and Motion to Sever [Docket No. 79] is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART AS MOOT.

2. Defendant City of Minneapolis' Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings, Summary Judgment and Motion to Sever [Docket No. 87] is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART AS MOOT.

REPORT & RECOMMENDATION

Tony N. Leung, United States Magistrate Judge.

I. INTRODUCTION

This matter is before the Court, United States Magistrate Judge Tony N. Leung, on alternative motions for judgment on the pleadings, summary judgment, and motions to sever brought by Defendants City of St. Paul (" St. Paul" ) (ECF No. 79) and City of Minneapolis (" Minneapolis" ) (ECF No. 87) (collectively, " Cities" ). These motions have been referred to the undersigned magistrate judge for a report and recommendation to the district court, the Honorable Michael J. Davis, Chief District Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and Local Rule 72.2(b). (ECF Nos. 85, 92.)

A hearing was held. Sonia L. Miller-Van Oort appeared on behalf of Plaintiff. (ECF No. 101.) Portia Hampton-Flowers appeared on behalf of St. Paul. ( Id.) Timothy S. Skarda appeared on behalf of Minneapolis. ( Id.)

Based upon the record, memoranda, and the proceedings herein, IT IS HEREBY RECOMMENDED that Defendant City of Saint Paul's Motions for Judgment on the Pleadings, Summary Judgment and Motion to Sever (ECF No. 79) be GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART AS MOOT, and Defendant City of Minneapolis's Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings, Summary Judgment and Motion to Sever (ECF No. 87) be GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART AS MOOT.

II. BACKGROUND[1]

Plaintiff brings claims under the Driver's Privacy Protection Act (" DPPA" ), 18 U.S.C. § 2721 et seq.; 42 U.S.C. § 1983; and common law based on accesses of her personal and private driver's license information. (Compl. ¶ ¶ 6, 179-205, 224-77, ECF No. 1.) This action is one of several actions filed in this District alleging unlawful access of private data. See, e.g., Kiminski v. Hunt, File No. 13-cv-185 (JNE/TNL) (consolidated cases); Kost v. Hunt, File No. 13-cv-583 (JNE/TNL);

Page 991

Potocnik v. Anoka Cnty., File No. 13-cv-1103 (DSD/TNL) (Ltr. to Hon. Michael J. Davis, Mar. 25, 2014, listing pending DPPA cases (ECF No. 98)).

A. The Database & Records Maintained

On June 24, 2014, this Court issued a report and recommendation (" R& R" ) regarding several dispositive motions filed by other defendants in this matter. (ECF No. 102.) The Court incorporates by reference Section II of the R& R addressing the nature of the database containing the information at issue and the records maintained therein; the extramarital affair of Plaintiff's then-husband and events leading to Plaintiff's discovery of the alleged impermissible accesses of her information; and the overall history of this litigation.

B. Accesses of Plaintiff's Information

Plaintiff alleges that " [o]fficers employed by, licensed by, or otherwise accessing through the City of St. Paul impermissibly accessed [her p]rivate [d]ata four times," and that " [o]fficers employed by, licensed by, or otherwise accessing through the City of Minneapolis impermissibly accessed [her ...


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