Tarnecy v. Baughman
OPINION AND ORDER re 1 PRO SE COMPLAINT filed by Plaintiff Michael Tarnecy. This case is DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE. Signed by Judge Rudy Lozano on 11/21/16. (cc: Michael Tarnecy). (cer)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF INDIANA
FORT WAYNE DIVISION
CAUSE NO. 1:16-CV-121
OPINION AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on the Complaint under 42
U.S.C. § 1983, filed by Michael Tarnecy, a pro se prisoner, on
April 7, 2016.
For the reasons set forth below, the
court DISMISSES the action WITHOUT PREJUDICE.
Tarnecy is an inmate at the Jay County Security Center (“Jay
On October 3, 2015, he was arrested by Jamie Baughman,
a detective with the Jay County Drug Task Force.
Tarnecy, Officer Baughman found and confiscated drugs and drugrelated paraphernalia.
Officer Baughman also took $750 that
Tarnecy earned working at Sawyer Drywall.
Tarnecy brings a claim
against Officer Baughman for the return of his $750.
The court must review the complaint and dismiss it if the
action is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim for
relief, or seeks monetary relief against a defendant who is immune
from such relief.
28 U.S.C. § 1915A.
To survive dismissal, the
complaint must state a claim for relief that is plausible on its
Bissessur v. Indiana Univ. Bd. of Trs., 581 F.3d 599, 602-03
(7th Cir. 2009).
“A claim has facial plausibility when the
plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the
Id. at 603.
Thus, the plaintiff “must do
better than putting a few words on paper that, in the hands of an
imaginative reader, might suggest that something has happened to
her that might be redressed by the law.”
N.A., 614 F.3d 400, 403 (7th Cir. 2010).
Swanson v. Citibank,
Nevertheless, the court
must bear in mind that “a pro se complaint, however inartfully
pleaded, must be held to less stringent standards than formal
pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94
(2007) (quotation marks and citations omitted).
Tarnecy has no constitutional claim for having his money taken
by Officer Baughman.1
To the extent he claims the defendant took
his money and never returned it, he would have to pursue state
Though the Fourteenth Amendment provides that state
officials shall not “deprive any person of life, liberty, or
property, without due process of law,” a state tort claims act that
Notably, Tarnecy does not suggest that the search of his vehicle was
provides a method by which a person can seek reimbursement for the
negligent loss or intentional deprivation of property meets the
requirements of the due process clause by providing due process of
law. Hudson v. Palmer, 468 U.S. 517, 533 (1984) (“For intentional,
as for negligent deprivations of property by state employees, the
state’s action is not complete until and unless it provides or
Indiana’s tort claims act (INDIANA CODE § 34-13-3-1 et seq.) and
other laws provide for state judicial review of property losses
caused by government employees, and provide an adequate postdeprivation
intentional deprivation of a person’s property.
See Wynn v.
Southward, 251 F.3d 588, 593 (7th Cir. 2001) (“Wynn has an adequate
post-deprivation remedy in the Indiana Tort Claims Act, and no more
dismissed without prejudice so that he can pursue it in state
For the reasons set forth above, the court DISMISSES the
action WITHOUT PREJUDICE.
DATED: November 21, 2016
/s/ RUDY LOZANO, Judge
United States District Court
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