JONES BEY v. STATE OF INDIANA et al
Entry Discussing State Defendants' Motion to Dismiss - For the foregoing reasons, the State Defendants' motion to dismiss [dkt 17] must be granted. Judgment consistent with this Entry and the Entry dismissing the claims against the Marion County Defendants shall now issue. (See order). Copy to Plaintiff via U.S. Mail. Signed by Judge Tanya Walton Pratt on 2/18/2016. (JLS)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF INDIANA
JOHN JONES BEY Authorized
Representative, Natural Person, In Propria
Persona EX Relatione John Jones; All Rights
Reserved; U.C.C. 1-207/ I-308; U.C.C. 1-103
Not a Corporate Person or Entity,
Misrepresented by Fraudulent Construct of
ALL CAPITAL LETTERS,
STATE OF INDIANA INDIANA
Entry Discussing State Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss
Plaintiff John Jones Bey brings this action against a number of state and local defendants
alleging that the defendants have illegally assessed property taxes on his home. The plaintiff
alleges that “[t]he state of Indiana, Marion County, Marion County treasury’s office [sic], and/or
any of its officers is not, nor ever were entitled to any payment of taxes of any kind from me and/or
my family from or on any of my/our properties.” Arguing that the claims against them are barred
by Eleventh Amendment immunity, defendants Michael Pence and the State of Indiana (the State
Defendants) move to dismiss and Jones Bey has responded. For the following reasons, the State
Defendants’ motion to dismiss [dkt 17] is granted.
I. Motion to Dismiss Standard
The State Defendants argue that the claims against them must be dismissed pursuant to
Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for failure to state a claim upon which relief
can be granted. The purpose of a motion to dismiss pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) is to test the
sufficiency of the complaint, not the merits of the suit. Triad Assocs., Inc. v. Chi. Hous. Auth., 892
F.2d 583, 586 (7th Cir. 1989). The standard for assessing the procedural sufficiency of pleadings
is imposed by Rule 8(a)(2), which requires “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that
the pleader is entitled to relief.” Thus, although the complaint need not recite “detailed factual
allegations,” it must state enough facts that, when accepted as true, “state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 570 (2007). A complaint
should only be dismissed pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) when “it appears beyond doubt that the plaintiff
can prove no set of facts in support of his claim which would entitle him to relief.” Killingsworth
v. HSBC Bank Nev., N.A., 507 F.3d 614, 618 (7th Cir. 2007). Additionally, the Court may not rely
upon evidence and facts outside of those alleged in the complaint in ruling on a motion to dismiss
pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6).
The State Defendants move to dismiss the plaintiff’s claims against because the claims are
barred by their Eleventh Amendment immunity. Eleventh Amendment immunity prohibits suits
against states and their agencies regardless of the relief sought, whether damages or injunctive
relief. Seminole Tribe of Florida v. Florida, 517 U.S. 44, 58 (1996); Pennhurst State School and
Hospital v. Halderman, 465 U.S. 89, 102 (1984). The Eleventh Amendment also bars suits for
damages brought against state officials in their official capacity. Kentucky v. Graham, 473 U.S.
159, 166–67 (1985); Garcia v. City of Chi., 24 F.3d 966, 969 (7th Cir. 1994) (“The Eleventh
Amendment prohibits federal courts from deciding suits brought by private litigants against states
or their agencies, and that prohibition extends to state officials acting in their official capacities.”)
(citing Will v. Mich. Dep’t of State Police, 491 U.S. 58, 71 (1989)).
Three exceptions to Eleventh Amendment immunity exist. First, suits against state officials
in their official capacities that seek prospective equitable relief for ongoing violations of federal
law are not barred by the Eleventh Amendment. Ex Parte Young, 209 U.S. 123 (1908). Second,
individuals may sue a state directly if Congress has validly abrogated the state’s immunity from
suit under the Fourteenth Amendment. MCI Telecomm. Corp. v. Ill. Commerce Comm’n, 183 F.3d
558, 563 (7th Cir.1999). Third, individuals may sue the state if the state waived its sovereign
immunity and consented to suit in federal court. Id. None of these exceptions is applicable to Jones
Bey’s claims. Specifically, he is not seeking prospective relief, but damages, and he has identified
no valid abrogation of sovereign immunity by Congress or waiver of immunity by the State. Jones
Bey’s claims against the State Defendants are therefore barred by sovereign immunity and must
For the foregoing reasons, the State Defendants’ motion to dismiss [dkt 17] must be
granted. Judgment consistent with this Entry and the Entry dismissing the claims against the
Marion County Defendants shall now issue.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
JOHN JONES BEY
3457 Kinnear Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46218
All electronically registered counsel
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