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Henneghan v. District of Columbia

United States District Court, District of Columbia

January 6, 2013

Gerald HENNEGHAN, et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, Defendant.

Page 6

Gerald Henneghan, Washington, DC, pro se.

Tempestuous G. Henneghan, Washington, DC, pro se.

Brian Gook-Hyun Kim, District of Columbia Office of the Attorney General, Washington, DC, for Defendant.

Page 7

MEMORANDUM OPINION

EMMET G. SULLIVAN, District Judge.

This matter is before the Court on Defendant District of Columbia's Motion to Dismiss and/or Motion for Summary Judgment.[1] For the reasons discussed below, the motion to dismiss will be granted, and the motion for summary judgment will be denied.

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff Gerald Henneghan (" Henneghan" ), an African-American male, resided in the District of Columbia with his adult daughter, Tempestuous Henneghan, and three minor sons. See Compl. at 1 (caption), 10 (page numbers designated by ECF). Reports of suspected child neglect apparently came to the attention of social workers at the District of Columbia's Child and Family Services Agency (" CFSA" ); an investigation revealed that the residence lacked electricity and running water. See id. at 10. Henneghan represented that he " used battery powered illumination and smoke detectors," as well as " 500 gallons of collected rain water and 200 gallons of fresh bottled water" for the family's use. Id.

Henneghan alleges that, on January 26, 2012, a CFSA representative visited the residence " to re-investigate the previous ... investigator's investigation because of a complaint" the agency had received, id. at 10, and that the representative deemed the home " uninhabitable" due to the lack of water service, id. at 11. Notwithstanding arrangements he had made with the District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority for restoration of water service, id., Henneghan alleges that, on January 27, 2012, the CFSA representative arrived at the residence with six Metropolitan Police Department officers and two inspectors from the District's Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (" DCRA" ). Id.

At that time, the police officers allegedly " raided plaintiffs['] property, seized plaintiffs['] propert[y] in violation of plaintiffs['] constitutional rights against unlawful searches and seizures[,] and provided armed access" to the CFSA and DCRA agents. Id. at 12. Further, these agents allegedly " falsely imprisoned plaintiffs inside of their property while the District government defendants siezed [sic] photographs of plaintiffs['] property against the will of the plaintiffs." Id. Plaintiffs allegedly were given " 30 minutes to pack some clothes and get out of [the] house." Id. Henneghan was not given " any notice of purported violations," id., and he was told that the residence would " be closed until plaintiffs allow[ed CFSA] and DCRA to perform periodic joint inspections of [the] property." Id. at 12-13. According to Henneghan, the District's agents " displaced and evicted plaintiffs from their home with[out] due process or equal access to the law and in violation of plaintiffs['] federally protected rights." Id. at 13.

Plaintiffs relocated to Prince George's County, Maryland. See id. at 13, 15. Notwithstanding their move outside of the District of Columbia, the District apparently petitioned for and obtained temporary emergency custody of the minor children. See id. at 14. On January 28, 2012, District agents executed a court order with the assistance of Prince George's County police officers. Id. at 15. According to Henneghan, the allegations of neglect were unfounded, see Plaintiffs['] Responses to Defen[d]ant's Motion to Dismiss and Plaintiffs['] Motion for Sanctions on Account of Defendant's Intentionally Misleading the

Page 8

Court While Knowing the Same or Any Material Part Thereof to be False (" ...


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