United States District Court, D. Minnesota
N. ERICKSEN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Mohamed Sharif Omar alleges violations of his constitutional
rights in an investigation that led to his indictment by a
federal grand jury and subsequent arrest. He sues Defendants
Heather Weyker, a police officer for the St. Paul Police
Department in Minnesota; John Bandemer, a St. Paul Police
Department sergeant who is alleged to have been Weyker's
supervisor; John Does 3-4, who are allegedly supervisory St.
Paul police officers; and the City of St. Paul (“St.
Paul”). Weyker and Bandemer move to dismiss M.
Omar's complaint pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim and on
absolute and qualified immunity grounds. Dkt. No. 41. St.
Paul moves on behalf of the City of St. Paul and John Does
3-4 for judgment on the pleadings pursuant to Rule 12(c).
Dkt. No. 47.
investigation at the core of M. Omar's civil complaint
targeted a suspected venture involving the sex-trafficking of
minor girls across Minnesota, Tennessee, and Ohio. The
investigation resulted in the criminal indictment of thirty
people, mostly Somali, in the Middle District of Tennessee in
2010-2011 (“Tennessee Case”). M. Omar alleges
that Weyker and Bandemer fabricated evidence about him and
others throughout the investigation, resulting in a tainted
indictment that was further corrupted by Weyker's
continuing deception, and causing his arrest and detention
without probable cause.
of M. Omar's co-defendants in the Tennessee Case bring
separate suits similarly alleging constitutional violations,
and a twenty-first person brings another related civil suit.
The parties agreed to coordinated briefing on the
Defendants' motions. The Court assumes familiarity with
its fuller opinion in one of the related cases, Osman v.
Weyker, et al., No. 16cv908 (“Osman
Opinion”) (filed simultaneously herewith), and will not
repeat that opinion's discussion verbatim here. M. Omar,
coordinating with the other plaintiffs represented by his
counsel, opposed the motions. See GBBS Pls.'
Opp. to St. Paul Mot., Dkt. No. 52; GBBS Pls.' Opp. to
DOJ Mot. to Dismiss, Dkt. No. 55.
Court held a hearing on the motions on May 3, 2017, and now
grants both motions.
motion to dismiss or a motion for judgment on the pleadings
is appropriately granted “only when there is no dispute
as to any material facts and the moving party is entitled to
judgment as a [m]atter of law.” Greenman v.
Jessen, 787 F.3d 882, 887 (8th Cir. 2015) (citation
omitted). To survive a Rule 12 motion, “a complaint
must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to
‘state a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.'” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662,
678 (2009) (citation omitted); Haney v. Portfolio
Recovery Assocs., LLC, 837 F.3d 918, 924 (8th Cir.
2016), as amended (Dec. 27, 2016). See also
Osman Op. 3-4.
the allegations are similar to those alleged by Osman and
summarized and analyzed in the Court's order in that
case. See, e.g., Osman Op. 4-8. The Court briefly
recounts some allegations in M. Omar's Second Amended
Complaint and some facts gleaned from the Tennessee Case
October 20, 2010, M. Omar was indicted in the Tennessee Case.
SAC ¶ 12. He was arrested on November 8, 2010, after a
First Superseding Indictment (“FSI”) was filed,
which charged him in six counts. See FSI, United
States v. Omar, No. 3:10cr260, Dkt. No. 36 (M.D. Tenn.
Nov. 3, 2010); see also SAC ¶¶ 12 (arrest
date), 16 (alleging that he was charged with “among
other things, conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking of a
minor . . . ”). Two counts alleged participation in a
sex-trafficking conspiracy in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
1591(a) (Counts 1 and 2). Two counts, Counts 3 and 4, alleged
obstruction of justice. Count 11 alleged recruitment from
December 2005 through June 2008 of a minor (Jane Doe One) to
engage in commercial sex. Finally, Count 15 alleged that from
May 20, 2006, through September 15, 2006, M. Omar conspired
to transport stolen money and goods across state lines in
violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2314. FSI ¶
sex-trafficking-related counts as against M. Omar
“primarily involved” the supposed witness-victim
Jane Doe One. SAC ¶ 18. The allegations also connected
M. Omar to Jane Doe Two, who “was the centerpiece of
Weyker's and Bandemer's fabricated case against Omar
and others . . . .” SAC ¶¶ 20-21. Weyker was
the lead investigator on the case, and Bandemer was her
supervisor in the St. Paul Police Department. SAC ¶ 15.
indictment also charged M. Omar with obstructing justice,
including alleging that he told co-defendant Haji Osman Salad
in May 2009 that “he knew a relative of Jane Doe Two
and would be talking to him that night.” FSI ¶ 76.
never engaged in any attempt to have Jane Doe Two engage in
commercial sex. There was simply no intention, desire or
expectation that Jane Doe Two would engage in commercial
sex.” SAC ¶ 22; see also SAC
¶ 26. “There was no influencing of witnesses.
Fabricated evidence formed the basis of the false allegations
against Omar.” SAC ¶ 22.
early 2012, as the parties in the Tennessee Case prepared for
trial to begin in March, the district court granted a motion
to sever some of the counts, including Count 15, to be tried
later. United States v. Omar, No. 3:10cr260, Dkt.
No. 1395 (M.D. Tenn. Feb. 16, 2012). In addition, M. Omar and
some other defendants elected to be severed from the
defendants preparing for trial on sex-trafficking-related
charges. United States v. Adan, 913 F.Supp.2d 555,
559 (M.D. Tenn. 2012); see also SAC ¶ 38.
Spring 2012 criminal trial, the jury acquitted six defendants
fully but convicted three defendants on some counts. SAC
¶ 39. The district court then granted Federal Rule of
Criminal Procedure 29 motions for judgments of acquittal by
the three convicted defendants, on the basis of a variance.
See SAC ¶ 39; Adan, 913 F.Supp.2d at
that trial, in August 2012, a Third Superseding Indictment
was filed. That indictment removed all of the
“facts/allegations relating specifically to Jane Doe
One, ” but did include a “passing reference to
Jane Doe Two and Omar . . . .” SAC ¶ 18. The
counts in which M. Omar was charged in the Third Superseding
Indictment included Count 16 for conspiracy to transport
stolen goods and Count 19 for credit-card fraud conspiracy.
See United States v. Omar, 3:10cr260, Dkt. No. 2701
(M.D. Tenn. Aug. 22, 2012).
after the trial, M. Omar moved for release from custody, and
he was released on conditions. SAC ¶ 53. The district
court's detention decision, however, was reversed on
appeal. SAC ¶ 54; see United States v. Fahra,
No. 13-5296, Dkt. No. 61-1 (6th Cir. Dec. 18, 2013)
(submitted in this case at DOJ Reply Ex. BB). The appellate
court found that, among other facts, the weight of the
evidence-including testimony and evidence presented at the
detention hearings, and testimony at the April 2012 trial-and
M. Omar's history and characteristics supported his
continued detention. See DOJ Reply Ex. BB at 6-8. M.
Omar “was consequently falsely imprisoned again on
March 26, 2014.” SAC ¶ 54. He then remained in
custody until January 12, 2016, when he was released on home
monitoring pending trial. See SAC ¶
He was finally fully released from ...