United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Louisville Division
MARIAH REED and HOMER PARRENT, as Administratrix of the Estate of King Messiah Chavez Walker, deceased child, Plaintiffs,
LOUISVILLE METRO GOVERNMENT, et al., Defendants.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND
DENYING IN PART MOTION TO DISMISS
CLARIAHORN BOOM, UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT JUDGE
Mariah Reed and the administratrix of her deceased
child’s estate (“the Baby”) sued Louisville
Metro Government (“Louisville Metro”), Director
Mark Bolton, and various medical personnel because of Ms.
Reed’s medical treatment while she was incarcerated at
Louisville Metro Department of Corrections
(“LMDC”). This matter is now before the Court on
a Motion to Dismiss by Defendants Louisville Metro and Mark
Bolton [R. 8]. Plaintiffs filed a response [R. 9], and
Defendants filed their reply [R. 10]. Fully briefed, this
matter is ripe for decision. For the reasons stated herein,
the Court will grant in part and deny in part the
purposes of considering Defendants’ Motion, the
following facts are taken as true. Ms. Reed was both
incarcerated at LMDC and pregnant with her third child. [R. 1
at p. 9] In early 2017, Defendants took Ms. Reed to the
hospital numerous times for treatment of lower abdominal
cramping, pain, and vaginal bleeding. Id. When Ms.
Reed was more than four months pregnant, in July 2017,
Defendants again transported Ms. Reed to the hospital due to
vaginal bleeding and complaints of menstrual-like cramping.
Id. The hospital discharged Ms. Reed back to
LMDC’s custody five days later. Id.
a.m. the next day, Ms. Reed complained of contractions and
severe pain “all over.” Id. Ms. Reed had
a pulse rate of 104 beats per minute, and the fetus had a
heartbeat of 152 beats per minute. Id. at p. 10.
Four hours later, the nurse noted in Ms. Reed’s chart
that an advanced registered nurse practitioner had ordered
that Ms. Reed be monitored. Id. At 10:30 a.m.,
another registered nurse prepared an emergency room referral
form because Ms. Reed had passed a large blood clot, and her
heart rate had risen to 145 beats per minute. Id.
However, no ambulance was called until after noon, nearly two
hours after the nurse completed the referral form.
Id. In the ambulance ride to the hospital, Ms. Reed
gave birth to her twenty-one-week-old baby. Id. Ms.
Reed’s baby died at the hospital hours later.
have asserted federal and state law claims against Louisville
Metro and Mark Bolton, Director of LMDC, in his individual
capacity. [R. 1] Both Defendants have moved to dismiss all
claims against them pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). [R. 8]
Motion to Dismiss Standard
is proper pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6) where the
plaintiff “fails to state a claim upon which relief can
be granted.” A complaint must contain “a short
and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is
entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). Rule 8
“does not require ‘detailed factual allegations,
’ but it demands more than an unadorned,
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (citing
Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555
(2007)). A complaint that only “offers ‘labels
and conclusions’ or ‘a formulaic recitation of
the elements of a cause of action’” is
insufficient. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 662 (citing
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555). In order to survive a
Rule 12(b)(6) motion, the complaint must “contain
either direct or inferential allegations respecting all
material elements necessary for recovery under a viable legal
theory.” D’Ambrosio v. Marino, 747 F.3d
378, 383 (6th Cir. 2014). The “complaint is viewed in
the light most favorable to [the plaintiff]; the allegations
in the complaint are accepted as true, and all reasonable
inferences are drawn in [the plaintiff’s] favor.”
Gavitt v. Born, 835 F.3d 623, 640 (6th Cir. 2016).
initial matter, in their Response to Defendant’s Motion
to Dismiss, Plaintiffs agree that “Louisville Metro
enjoys sovereign immunity from Plaintiffs’ state
claims.” [R. 9 at p. 1] Accordingly, the Court will
grant Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss as to any state law
claims asserted against Louisville Metro.
also seek to hold Louisville Metro liable for the deprivation
of Ms. Reed’s and the Baby’s constitutional
rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. [R. 1 at p. 12]
Louisville Metro argues that the claim should be dismissed,
as the complaint fails to state a claim for municipal
liability under § 1983. [R. 8-1 at pp. 7–9]
state a claim against a municipal entity such as Louisville
Metro, Plaintiffs must show that Louisville Metro committed
some wrong. See Doe v. Clairborne Cnty., Tenn., 103
F.3d 495, 507 (6th Cir. 1996) (“[R]espondeat superior
is not available as a theory of recovery under section
1983.”). In order to establish municipal liability, the
entity must perform the unconstitutional act pursuant to a
governmental policy or custom. Monell v. Dep’t of
Soc. Servs., 436 U.S. 658, 690– 91 (1978). The
Sixth Circuit requires the plaintiff to “identify the
policy, connect the policy to the city itself and show that
the particular injury was incurred because of the execution
of that policy.” Garner v. Memphis Police
Dep’t, 8 F.3d 358, 364 (6th Cir. 1993) (internal
does seek to hold Louisville Metro liable for the
“customs and practices of Defendants” that
resulted in violations of Reed’s constitutional rights
[R. 1 at pp. 11–12] Plaintiffs vaguely suggest that
these customs and practices were related to the training and
supervision of staff. Id. at p. 9–10. However,
the complaint is otherwise silent as to what those customs
and practices are, why they ...