United States District Court, D. Nebraska
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. Gerrard Chief United States District Judge
matter is before the Court on the defendants' motion for
summary judgment. Filing 18. For the reasons set forth below,
the Court will grant that motion, and Davis' amended
complaint will be dismissed.
2007 until she was terminated on December 2, 2016, the
plaintiff, Deann Davis, worked as an administrative assistant
for the primary defendant, Chase County School District.
Filing 20 at 3. During the fall of 2016, Davis' son,
Tyler, was also a student in the Chase County School
District. Filing 20 at 3. Unfortunately, Tyler was accused of
engaging in some questionable behavior. Specifically, Tyler
was accused of doing "something inappropriate with
another students' pop can after a football game."
Filing 10 at 5. Although Tyler denied those charges, he was
not permitted to play in the next football game. Filing 10 at
Tyler's temporary football suspension, Davis and her
husband met with Superintendent Rand Geier, Wauneta-Palisade
Principal Joseph Frecks, and a school counselor to discuss
Tyler's behavior. Filing 10 at 6. Although the meeting
appeared to go well, Tyler apparently continued to act
inappropriately. Filing 10 at 7-8. Eventually, Tyler was also
kicked off the basketball team. Filing 10 at 7-8. This
prompted Davis and her husband to transfer Tyler to a
different school in a different school district. Filing 10 at
7. A few days after Tyler transferred, Davis' employment
with the Chase County School District was terminated. Filing
10 at 8.
judgment is proper if the movant shows that there is no
genuine dispute as to any material fact and that the movant
is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. SeeFed.
R. Civ. P. 56(a). The movant bears the initial responsibility
of informing the Court of the basis for the motion, and must
identify those portions of the record which the movant
believes demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of
material fact. Torgerson v. City of Rochester, 643
F.3d 1031, 1042 (8th Cir. 2011) (en banc). If the movant does
so, the nonmovant must respond by submitting evidentiary
materials that set out specific facts showing that there is a
genuine issue for trial. Id.
motion for summary judgment, facts must be viewed in the
light most favorable to the nonmoving party only if there is
a genuine dispute as to those facts. Id. Credibility
determinations, the weighing of the evidence, and the drawing
of legitimate inferences from the evidence are jury
functions, not those of a judge. Id. But the
nonmovant must do more than simply show that there is some
metaphysical doubt as to the material facts. Id. In
order to show that disputed facts are material, the party
opposing summary judgment must cite to the relevant
substantive law in identifying facts that might affect the
outcome of the suit. Quinn v. St. Louis County, 653
F.3d 745, 751 (8th Cir. 2011). The mere existence of a
scintilla of evidence in support of the nonmovant's
position will be insufficient; there must be evidence on
which the jury could conceivably find for the nonmovant.
Barber v. C1 Truck Driver Training, LLC, 656 F.3d
782, 791-92 (8th Cir. 2011). Where the record taken as a
whole could not lead a rational trier of fact to find for the
nonmoving party, there is no genuine issue for trial.
Torgerson, 643 F.3d at 1042.
claims that she was unlawfully fired because she advocated
for her son. Seefiling 10 at 9. That termination,
Davis contends, violated the following constitutional and
1. The right to free speech as protected under the First
Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Filing 10 at 11.
2. The right to due process pursuant to the Fourteenth
Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Filing 10 at 11.
3. Various rights under the Equal Opportunity in Education
Act, Neb. Rev. Stat. § 79-2, 114 et seq. Filing
10 at 10.
4. The right to accrued wages under the Nebraska Wage Payment
and Collections Act, Neb. Rev. Stat. § 14-813. Filing 10
School District and its employees have moved for summary
judgment on each of Davis' allegations. For the reasons
set forth below, the Court will grant that motion, and
Davis' claims will be dismissed.
noted above, Davis claims that her First and Fourteenth
Amendment rights were violated. Filing 10 at 11. Those
constitutional claims are brought against the School District
and the School District's employees in their official and
individual capacities. The Court will first evaluate
Davis' official capacity claims before addressing
Davis' claims against Geier and Frecks in their