asks the court to enjoin the defendant from undertaking certain
enforcement actions pursuant to Section 14141 to the extent that
those actions affect members of the plaintiffs organization. The
defendants argue that Grand Lodge lacks standing and that its
claims are not ripe. For the reasons stated below, the court
will grant the defendants' motion to dismiss for lack of
Grand Lodge is a non-profit fraternal organization that
represents the interests of law-enforcement officers throughout
the United States. See Compl. ¶ 6. Membership in Grand Lodge's
affiliated lodges "is limited to persons who support and defend
the Constitution of the United States and promote and foster the
enforcement of law and order." Id. ¶ 8. In conjunction with
its state and local affiliates, Grand Lodge provides legal
representation to its members in matters concerning
collective-bargaining agreements and internal police affairs and
procedures. See id. ¶ 16. Grand Lodge also advocates on behalf
of its members before Congress and state legislatures and
courts. See id.
According to the defendants, Congress enacted the Violent
Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 in response to the
beating of Rodney King by members of the Los Angeles Police
Department. See Defs.' Mot. to Dismiss at 3. Section 14141 of
the Act provides the United States with a remedy in the form of
injunctive and declaratory relief, but not damages, against
systemic police misconduct. See 42 U.S.C. § 14141. Subsection
(a) of the Act provides that it is unlawful for any government
official "to engage in a pattern or practice of conduct . . .
that deprives persons of rights, privileges, or immunities
secured or protected by the Constitution or the laws of the
United States." 42 U.S.C. § 14141(a). Subsection (b) authorizes
the U.S. Attorney General to file a civil action seeking
"appropriate equitable and declaratory relief to eliminate the
pattern or practice" referenced in subsection (a). See id. §
Pursuant to its powers under Section 14141, the United States,
through the Department of Justice ("DOJ"), has undertaken
investigations of law-enforcement agencies in at least fourteen
cities.*fn1 See Compl. ¶ 25. Based on these investigations,
DOJ has initiated lawsuits against five state and local
governments. In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and in Steubenville
and Columbus, Ohio, for example, DOJ has filed suits alleging a
pattern or practice of excessive force, false arrests, and
improper searches. See DOJ Police Misconduct Pattern or
Practice Program, Defs.' Reply in Support of Mot. to Dismiss,
Ex. A, at 7. DOJ has also filed suit against the New Jersey
State Police, alleging a pattern of racially discriminatory
traffic stops and searches. See id.
In the Pittsburgh, Steubenville, and New Jersey lawsuits, the
parties have negotiated settlements through the imposition of
court-authorized consent decrees. See Compl. ¶¶ 33, 35. A
consent decree resolving DOJ's claims against the city of Los
Angeles is awaiting entry by the court. See Defs.' Mot. to
Dismiss at 5. In Columbus, DOJ has been unable to negotiate a
consent decree. See id at 6. Grand
Lodge claims that by intervening in the Columbus
litigation,*fn2 it was able to prevent DOJ and the city from
entering into a consent decree. See Compl. ¶¶ 37, 51.
Grand Lodge sets forth three causes of action in its
complaint: (1) "Section 14141 is invalid because it exceeds the
scope of congressional power under Section 5 of the Fourteenth
Amendment" or, in the alternative, the defendants' application
of the statute is erroneous and/or unconstitutional, see id. ¶¶
58-59; (2) the defendants should be enjoined from applying
Section 14141 in the form of consent decrees, because the terms
of such agreements generally impinge on the legal interests of
police officers, see id. ¶¶ 72, 76; and (3) the defendants
should be enjoined from applying Section 14141 through the use
of consent decrees, because there is no evidence on the record
that demonstrates the defendants' past compliance with Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure 52 and 65(d),*fn3 see id. ¶¶ 82-83.
A. Legal Standard
The defendants move to dismiss the complaint pursuant to
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1) or, in the alternative,
Rule 12(b)(6). Rule 12(b)(1) deals with the court's
subject-matter jurisdiction, while Rule 12(b)(6) "presents a
ruling on the merits with a res judicata effect." See Haase v.
Sessions, 835 F.2d 902, 906 (D.C.Cir. 1987). In the present
case, the defendants argue that Grand Lodge has not fulfilled
the constitutional requirement of standing. See Defs.' Mot. to
Dismiss at 2. "The defect of standing is a defect in subject
matter jurisdiction." Haase, 835 F.2d at 906. Therefore, the
court will confine its consideration to the 12(b)(1) motion to
Under Rule 12(b)(1), the plaintiff bears the burden of
establishing that the court has jurisdiction. See District of
Columbia Retirement Bd. v. United States, 657 F. Supp. 428, 431
(D.C. 1987). Because subject-matter jurisdiction focuses on the
court's power to hear the plaintiffs claim, a Rule 12(b)(1)
motion imposes on the court an affirmative obligation to ensure
that it is acting within the scope of its jurisdictional
authority. See 5A Charles A. Wright & Arthur R. Miller,
FED.PRAC. & PROC.CIV.2D, § 1350. For this reason, "the
[p]laintiffs factual allegations in the complaint . . . will
bear closer scrutiny in
resolving a 12(b)(1) motion" than in resolving a 12(b)(6) motion
for failure to state a claim. See id.
In deciding a 12(b)(1) motion, the court need not limit itself
to the allegations of the complaint. See Hohri v. United
States, 782 F.2d 227, 241 (D.C.Cir. 1986), vacated on other
grounds, 482 U.S. 64, 107 S.Ct. 2246, 96 L.Ed.2d 51 (1987).
Rather, "[t]he court may consider such materials outside the
pleadings as it deems appropriate to resolve the question
whether it has jurisdiction in the case." Scolaro v. D.C. Board
of Elections and Ethics, 104 F. Supp.2d 18, 22 (D.C. 2000)
(citing Herbert v. Nat'l Academy of Sciences, 974 F.2d 192,
197 (D.C.Cir. 1992)); see also Haase v. Sessions,
835 F.2d 902, 906 (D.C.Cir. 1987).
B. Standing Analysis
1. Legal Standard
Article III of the United States Constitution limits the role
of federal courts to the resolution of "cases" or
"controversies." See U.S. Const. Art. III, § 2, cl. 1. "A
showing of standing `is [therefore] an essential and unchanging'
predicate to any exercise of [federal court] jurisdiction."
Florida Audubon Soc. v. Bentsen, 94 F.3d 658, 663 (D.C.Cir.
1996) (citing Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife, 504 U.S. 555,
560, 112 S.Ct. 2130, 119 L.Ed.2d 351 (1992)). The standing
requirement serves important goals: separation of powers,
judicial efficiency, the improvement of judicial decision-making
and fairness. See, e.g., Warth v. Seldin, 422 U.S. 490, 498,
95 S.Ct. 2197, 45 L.Ed.2d 343 (1975) (discussing the limited
role of courts in a democratic society); United States v.
Richardson, 418 U.S. 166, 192, 94 S.Ct. 2940, 41 L.Ed.2d 678
(1974) (Powell, J., concurring) (standing requirement prevents a
flood of lawsuits); Baker v. Carr, 369 U.S. 186, 204, 82 S.Ct.
691, 7 L.Ed.2d 663 (1962) (standing requirement ensures that a
litigant has "such a personal stake in the outcome of the
controversy as to assure that concrete adverseness which
sharpens the presentation of issues upon which the court so
largely depends. . . ."); Singleton v. Wulff, 428 U.S. 106,
113-114, 96 S.Ct. 2868, 49 L.Ed.2d 826 (1976) ("courts should
not adjudicate . . . rights unnecessarily").
The Supreme Court has framed the law of standing as a narrow,
First, the plaintiff must have suffered an "injury in
fact" — an invasion of a legally protected interest
which is (a) concrete and particularized, and (b)
"actual and imminent, not `conjectural or
hypothetical,'" Second, there must be a "causal
connection between the injury and the conduct
complained of — the injury has to be fairly . . .
trace[able] to the challenged action of the
defendant. . . ." Third, it must be "likely," as
opposed to merely "speculative," that the injury will
be "redressed by a favorable decision."
Lujan, 504 U.S. at 560-61, 112 S.Ct. 2130 (citations omitted).
Courts consider the injury-in-fact prong the "principal
limitation imposed by Article III." See, e.g., McKinney v.
United States Dep't of Treasury, 799 F.2d 1544 (Fed.Cir. 1986).
Under this prong, a future injury is imminent only if the injury
is "certainly impending," Lujan, 504 U.S. at 565 n. 2,112
S.Ct. 2130; speculative allegations of future injury will not
suffice. See Los Angeles v. Lyons, 461 U.S. 95, 102, 103 S.Ct.
1660, 75 L.Ed.2d 675 (1983); Tenacre Found. v. INS,
892 F. Supp. 289, 294 (D.C. 1995), aff'd, 78 F.3d 693 (D.C.Cir.
Even if a party satisfies the constitutional requirements of
standing, the courts may still deny standing on prudential
grounds. See, e.g., Gladstone,
Realtors v. Village of Bellwood, 441 U.S. 91, 99-100, 99 S.Ct.
1601, 60 L.Ed.2d 66 (1979). The prudential rules of standing
serve to limit the role of courts in resolving public disputes.
See, e.g., Warth, 422 U.S. at 499, 95 S.Ct. 2197. For example,
courts may deny standing to litigants who present the court with
generalized grievances shared, by many persons, which can be
better addressed by the political process. See id. In
addition, courts may decline to hear cases in which litigants
"seek to assert the rights of third parties or to proffer
grievances not relevant to the `zone of interests' intended to
be protected or regulated by the statute or constitutional
guarantee in question." Navegar, Inc. v. United States,
103 F.3d 994, 998 (D.C.Cir. 1997).
There are additional rules of standing when the plaintiff is
an association. An association may sue on its own behalf or, as
in the present case, on behalf of its members. See, e.g.,
United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 751 v. Brown
Group, Inc., 517 U.S. 544, 552, 116 S.Ct. 1529, 134 L.Ed.2d 758
(1996). An association has standing to sue on behalf of its
members when: (a) its members would otherwise have standing to
sue in their own right; (b) the interests the organization seeks
to protect are germane to the organization's purpose; and (c)
neither the claim asserted nor the relief requested requires the
participation of individual members in the lawsuit. See Hunt v.
Washington State Apple Adver. Comm'n, 432 U.S. 333, 343, 97
S.Ct. 2434, 53 L.Ed.2d 383 (1977); see also National Lime
Ass'n. v. E.P.A., 233 F.3d 625, 637 (D.C.Cir. 2000).
2. The Injuries that the Plaintiff Fears Are Not Imminent,
but Merely Conjectural and Hypothetical
In the present case, Grand Lodge claims to have standing to
bring a pre-enforcement suit on behalf of its members.