This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/04/2021 at 05:02:56 (UTC).

NIRA WOODS, DR. VS DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPEMENT

Case Summary

On 08/11/2020 NIRA WOODS, DR filed a Property - Other Property Fraud lawsuit against DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPEMENT. This case was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Burbank Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California. The Judges overseeing this case are WILLIAM D. STEWART and DAVID J. COWAN. The case status is Pending - Other Pending.
Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    *******0564

  • Filing Date:

    08/11/2020

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Property - Other Property Fraud

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

Presiding Judges

WILLIAM D. STEWART

DAVID J. COWAN

 

Party Details

Plaintiff

WOODS NIRA DR.

Defendants

DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPEMENT

N & K COMMERCIAL PROPERTY INC.

DOSE 20 - 50

FLAKER TRACIE

WEINERT RICHARD

BORDEN KIM

WAY TSAE

MEGEFF JON

TORRANCE POLICE DEPARTMENT; & DEPARTMENT OF MENTAL HEALTH/MENTAL

DOWDALL TERRYR.

MIYAKE KEN

EIFLER ROBIN G.

GUZMAN MANUAL

DOWDALL LAW OFFICES A.P.C.

CHANDLER'S SAND & GRAVEL INC.

TORRES JANICE

THE MANAGEMENT OF SKYLINE MOBILE PARK

FAMIGHETTI ROBIN

GALINDO EDWIN G.

2 More Parties Available

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Defendant Attorneys

THOMPSON-BELL DELLA

CHRUN RENE

LEVINE MAUREEN ANNE

OVERTON SARAH LEE

 

Court Documents

Notice - NOTICE OF FILING EXHIBIT 45

6/1/2021: Notice - NOTICE OF FILING EXHIBIT 45

Notice - NOTICE OF FILLING EXHIBIT 46

6/1/2021: Notice - NOTICE OF FILLING EXHIBIT 46

Notice - NOTICE OF FILING EXHIBIT 47 OF MOTION REQUEST AN ORDER TO PRODUCE COURT TRANSCRIPTS

6/1/2021: Notice - NOTICE OF FILING EXHIBIT 47 OF MOTION REQUEST AN ORDER TO PRODUCE COURT TRANSCRIPTS

Exhibit List

6/2/2021: Exhibit List

Reply - REPLY OF DEFENDANT ROBIN FAMIGHETTI TO PLAINTIFFS OPPOSITION/OBJECTION TO DEFENDANTS DEMURRER TO THE FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT AND REQUEST FOR JUDICIAL NOTICE

5/27/2021: Reply - REPLY OF DEFENDANT ROBIN FAMIGHETTI TO PLAINTIFFS OPPOSITION/OBJECTION TO DEFENDANTS DEMURRER TO THE FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT AND REQUEST FOR JUDICIAL NOTICE

Opposition - OPPOSITION /OBJECTION TO DEFENDANTS [20] REPLY FILED ON 05/27/21

5/28/2021: Opposition - OPPOSITION /OBJECTION TO DEFENDANTS [20] REPLY FILED ON 05/27/21

Objection - OBJECTION TO THE DISMISSED DOWDALL DEFENDANTS' REQUEST ATTORNEYS FEE COST

5/17/2021: Objection - OBJECTION TO THE DISMISSED DOWDALL DEFENDANTS' REQUEST ATTORNEYS FEE COST

Request for Judicial Notice

5/17/2021: Request for Judicial Notice

Objection - OBJECTION TO DEF REQUEST FOR JUDICIAL NOTICE [FILED CONCURRENTLY]

4/21/2021: Objection - OBJECTION TO DEF REQUEST FOR JUDICIAL NOTICE [FILED CONCURRENTLY]

Opposition - OPPOSITION TO 1ST DEMURRER BY DEFENDANT

4/21/2021: Opposition - OPPOSITION TO 1ST DEMURRER BY DEFENDANT

Exhibit List - EXHIBIT LIST 1-44 OF ACTUAL FILED EXHIBITS 1-44; IN SUPPORT OF THE FAC

4/12/2021: Exhibit List - EXHIBIT LIST 1-44 OF ACTUAL FILED EXHIBITS 1-44; IN SUPPORT OF THE FAC

Opposition - OPPOSITION TO 2ND DEMURRER BY DEFENDANTS

4/12/2021: Opposition - OPPOSITION TO 2ND DEMURRER BY DEFENDANTS

Notice - NOTICE OF EXHIBIT 44 BLUE GREEN RED PULSED LASER BEAMS RADIATIONS FROM UNITS 70, 69, CLUB HOUSE, INTO-INSIDE UNIT 68 MY HOME

4/12/2021: Notice - NOTICE OF EXHIBIT 44 BLUE GREEN RED PULSED LASER BEAMS RADIATIONS FROM UNITS 70, 69, CLUB HOUSE, INTO-INSIDE UNIT 68 MY HOME

Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (RULING ON SUBMITTED MATTER) OF 04/13/2021

4/13/2021: Certificate of Mailing for - CERTIFICATE OF MAILING FOR (RULING ON SUBMITTED MATTER) OF 04/13/2021

Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (RULING ON SUBMITTED MATTER)

4/13/2021: Minute Order - MINUTE ORDER (RULING ON SUBMITTED MATTER)

Declaration - DECLARATION OF SARAH L. OVERTON RE: MEET AND CONFER PURSUANT TO CODE OF CIVIL PROCEDURE 430.41(A)(2)

4/14/2021: Declaration - DECLARATION OF SARAH L. OVERTON RE: MEET AND CONFER PURSUANT TO CODE OF CIVIL PROCEDURE 430.41(A)(2)

Demurrer - without Motion to Strike

4/14/2021: Demurrer - without Motion to Strike

Request for Judicial Notice

4/14/2021: Request for Judicial Notice

246 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 11/05/2021
  • Hearing11/05/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department B at 300 East Olive, Burbank, CA 91502; Hearing on Motion for Order 2021_03_09-Request for Order to compel Defendants 20 additional Production

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  • 10/01/2021
  • Hearing10/01/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department B at 300 East Olive, Burbank, CA 91502; Hearing on Motion for Order 2021_03_09-Request for Order to compel Defendant 20 Production

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  • 07/27/2021
  • Hearing07/27/2021 at 09:30 AM in Department B at 300 East Olive, Burbank, CA 91502; Case Management Conference

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  • 07/23/2021
  • Hearing07/23/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department B at 300 East Olive, Burbank, CA 91502; Hearing on Motion for Attorney Fees

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  • 06/25/2021
  • Hearing06/25/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department B at 300 East Olive, Burbank, CA 91502; Hearing on Demurrer - without Motion to Strike

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  • 06/25/2021
  • Hearing06/25/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department B at 300 East Olive, Burbank, CA 91502; Hearing on Demurrer - without Motion to Strike

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  • 06/04/2021
  • Hearing06/04/2021 at 08:30 AM in Department B at 300 East Olive, Burbank, CA 91502; Hearing on Demurrer - without Motion to Strike

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  • 06/02/2021
  • DocketExhibit List; Filed by Nira Woods, Dr. (Plaintiff)

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  • 06/01/2021
  • DocketNotice (of Filing Exhibit 47 of Motion Request an Order to produce Court Transcripts); Filed by Nira Woods, Dr. (Plaintiff)

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  • 06/01/2021
  • DocketNotice (of Filling Exhibit 46); Filed by Nira Woods, Dr. (Plaintiff)

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299 More Docket Entries
  • 08/19/2020
  • DocketOrder on Court Fee Waiver (Superior Court); Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/19/2020
  • DocketEx Parte Application (For Order and Relief); Filed by Nira Woods, Dr. (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/17/2020
  • DocketSummons (on Complaint); Filed by Nira Woods, Dr. (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/13/2020
  • DocketOrder on Court Fee Waiver (Superior Court); Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/13/2020
  • DocketOrder on Court Fee Waiver (Superior Court); Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/12/2020
  • DocketOrder to Show Cause Failure to File Proof of Service; Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/12/2020
  • DocketNotice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/11/2020
  • DocketNotice of Case Assignment - Unlimited Civil Case; Filed by Clerk

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  • 08/11/2020
  • DocketCivil Case Cover Sheet; Filed by Nira Woods, Dr. (Plaintiff)

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  • 08/11/2020
  • DocketComplaint (Under State/Federal Laws...); Filed by Nira Woods, Dr. (Plaintiff)

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: *******0564 Hearing Date: April 22, 2022 Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: April 22, 2022

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

motion for order to stay

BACKGROUND

A. Allegations

Plaintiff Dr. Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”, a self-represented litigant) alleges she is the lessee of private land identified as Unit 68 within Skyline Mobile Park (“Park”) located at 2550 PCH, Torrance, CA 90505. (SAC at p.3.) She alleges that from 2019 to 2021, Defendants engaged in willful acts in the Park, including upgrading their “Hazardous Surveillance System” in the Park to include multiple high level intensity of hazardous pulsed laser/microwave/infrared radiation sources. (Id., 9.) She also alleges that Defendants engaged in video recording and sharing those videos over the internet. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges other various acts that Defendants engaged in, including making false representations to Plaintiff, dumping large amounts of debris of large cactuses, physically assaulting and battering her, etc.

On July 26, 2021, Plaintiff filed the second amended complaint (“SAC”) for: (1) "Injunction/Petition/A demand for judgment for relief to which the Plaintiff claims to be entitled under LAW"; (2) "Invasion/violation of freedom to practice Religion; Privacy; hate crimes; false imprisonment; endangerment; Repeated often”; (3) "Fraud(s) of: Actual Fraud, Actionable Fraud, Constructive Fraud, and or Actual Malice to Plaintiff”; and (4) “Violation/infringe of Plaintiff’s Lease Agreement Dated 04/01/2003.”

B. Motion on Calendar

On January 3, 2022, Plaintiff filed a motion for an order to stay lower court proceedings until the Appellate Court has ruled on all appeals.

The Court is not in receipt of an opposition brief.

DISCUSSION

In her motion, Plaintiff argues that any appellate rulings may impact this Court’s proceedings if this Court were to continue with the litigation. She argues that the defendants in this action run the case and that the case must be reassigned to the Torrance Courthouse.

In her moving papers, Plaintiff does not cite to any legal authority. However, CCP 916 states:

(a) Except as provided in Sections 917.1 to 917.9, inclusive, and in Section 116.810, the perfecting of an appeal stays proceedings in the trial court upon the judgment or order appealed from or upon the matters embraced therein or affected thereby, including enforcement of the judgment or order, but the trial court may proceed upon any other matter embraced in the action and not affected by the judgment or order.

(b) When there is a stay of proceedings other than the enforcement of the judgment, the trial court shall have jurisdiction of proceedings related to the enforcement of the judgment as well as any other matter embraced in the action and not affected by the judgment or order appealed from.

(CCP 916.)

Thus, matters pending in this action with the Court are automatically stayed pending the appeals for the purposes delineated in section 916. However, the Court will not impose a blanket stay of the action for matters that are not embraced in the appeal or affected by the appeal.

CONCLUSION AND ORDER

Plaintiff’s motion for stay is granted in part and denied in part. The matters pending in this Court are stayed pursuant to CCP 916(a), such that “the perfecting of an appeal stays proceedings in the trial court upon the judgment or order appealed from or upon the matters embraced therein or affected thereby, including enforcement of the judgment or order.” However, the motion is denied in part pursuant to section 916(a), such that “the trial court may proceed upon any other matter embraced in the action and not affected by the judgment or order.” Whether a matter or motion will be stayed will be determined on an item-by-item basis. A blanket stay to the entirety of the case will not be imposed.

Defendants shall provide notice of this order.



b'

Case Number: *******0564 Hearing Date: November 5, 2021 Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: November 5, 2021

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

motion to compel defendant 20 to produce to plaintiff additional records

On March 9, 2021, Plaintiff Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”) filed a motion to compel Defendant [20], identified as Robin Famighetti, to produce various documents.

The Court sustained Robin Famighetti’s demurrer without leave to amend as to Plaintiff’s first amended complaint. Thereafter, the Court signed an Order of Dismissal and Judgment on July 13, 2021 ordering that the FAC be dismissed with prejudice as to Robin Famighetti and that judgment be entered on behalf of Robin Famighetti and against Plaintiff.

Accordingly, Robin Famighetti is no longer a party to this action. As such, a motion to compel Robin Famighetti to produce documents by way of written discovery is improper. If Plaintiff still seeks these documents against Robin Famighetti, Plaintiff should seek the documents through a subpoena.

As such, the motion to compel Robin Famighetti to produce certain records is denied.

Plaintiff shall provide notice of this order.

'


b'

Case Number: *******0564 Hearing Date: October 15, 2021 Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: October 15, 2021

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

demurrer

BACKGROUND

A. Allegations

Plaintiff Dr. Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”, a self-represented litigant) alleges she is the lessee of private land identified as Unit 68 within Skyline Mobile Park (“Park”) located at 2550 PCH, Torrance, CA 90505. (SAC at p.3.) She alleges that from 2019 to 2021, Defendants engaged in willful acts in the Park, including upgrading their “Hazardous Surveillance System” in the Park to include multiple high level intensity of hazardous pulsed laser/microwave/infrared radiation sources. (Id., ¶9.) She also alleges that Defendants engaged in video recording and sharing those videos over the internet. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges other various acts that Defendants engaged in, including making false representations to Plaintiff, dumping large amounts of debris of large cactuses, physically assaulting and battering her, etc.

On July 26, 2021, Plaintiff filed the second amended complaint (“SAC”) for: (1) "Injunction/Petition/A demand for judgment for relief to which the Plaintiff claims to be entitled under LAW"; (2) "Invasion/violation of freedom to practice Religion; Privacy; hate crimes; false imprisonment; endangerment; Repeated often”; (3) "Fraud(s) of: Actual Fraud, Actionable Fraud, Constructive Fraud, and or Actual Malice to Plaintiff”; and (4) “Violation/infringe of Plaintiff’s Lease Agreement Dated 04/01/2003.”

B. Demurrer on Calendar

On August 16, 2021, Defendants N & K Commercial Property, Inc. (“N&K”), Ken Miyake (“Miyake”), Victor Guzman, and Manuel Guzman (collectively, “N&K Defendants”) filed a demurrer to the entirety of the SAC and each cause of action.

On September 20, 2021, Plaintiff filed 3 documents opposing, objecting, demanding, and moving to compel Defendants [7], [9], [11], and [12]’s response to special interrogatories and requests for production, as well as demanding the assignment of a public attorney. Defendants [7], [9], [11], and [12] are identified as Victor Guzman, Manuel Guzman, N & K Commercial Property, Inc., and Ken Miyake, respectively. Her captions state that these documents are to be heard with the demurrer on calendar on October 15, 2021. The Court notes that these documents do not directly address the merits of the demurrer.

On October 5, 2021, N&K Defendants filed a reply brief.

DISCUSSION

N&K Defendants filed a demurrer to the entire SAC and specifically to the 1st to 4th causes of action on the grounds that the SAC fails to allege sufficient facts to constitute causes of action against them and the allegations are uncertain.

N&K Defendants argue that Plaintiff has been given multiple opportunities to amend the complaint, but she has still alleged vague and confusing allegations against each of the Defendants. N&K Defendants argue that Plaintiff generally refers to “Defendants” in the SAC and that their actions each support the others at the Park. They argue that Plaintiff has alleged that unidentified Defendants continued to upgrade their hazardous surveillance system in the park, conducted surveillance of Plaintiff insider her home, shared the surveillance on the internet, ran the clubhouse as a dancing school for Asians only, etc. without specificity of which Defendant(s) were engaged in those actions.

In the Court’s prior ruling on the demurrer to the FAC, the Court found that Plaintiff’s allegations were uncertain and unclear regarding who Plaintiff was referring to when she was referring to “Defendants” generally and without distinction. The same defect is present in the SAC. Again, Plaintiff alleges that “Defendants” without differentiation or specificity engaged in actions regarding her lease, engaged in video recording with surveillance at high intensity levels of radiation, made false representations, their employees physically assaulted and battered Plaintiff, etc.

Next, N&K Defendants argue that the SAC fails to allege sufficient facts to constitute causes of action against them.

In her 1st cause of action for injunction/petition, Plaintiff requests that: (1) she be assigned a public attorney; (2) judgment be granted to demolish the hazardous surveillance system off the park; (3) she be granted relief from the claim presentation requirement; (4) she be given free movement on the fire/emergency exit route in the park; (5) the case reassigned back to Torrance Court; and (6) Defendants be compelled to identify the management of Skyline Mobile Park and the agents on Plaintiff’s lease agreement. As discussed above, the allegations refer to the Defendants in this action without any distinction. Also, Plaintiff’s 1st cause of action fails to allege facts to support a valid cause of action for relief. It is unclear what allegations are being directed at N&K Defendants. Thus, the demurrer to the 1st cause of action is sustained.

In her 2nd cause of action for invasion/violation of freedom/etc., Plaintiff alleges that Defendants’ willful acts of surveillance at high intensity radiation and video recording Plaintiff prevented her from practicing her religion and violated her Constitutional rights. (SAC, ¶35.) Again, it is unclear what conduct N&K Defendants engaged in that violated Plaintiff’s rights. The allegations further do not state sufficient facts to constitute a cause of action against them. (They also argue in their demurrer that they are not government actors, Plaintiff has not alleged they are government actors, and, thus, they cannot be liable for under the U.S. Constitution.) The demurrer to the 2nd cause of action is sustained.

In the 3rd cause of action for fraud, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants misrepresented their willful acts in the Park to Plaintiff from 2019 to 2021 in writing and in person regarding the surveillance and video recordings. (SAC, ¶42.) A fraud cause of action is a tort of deceit and the facts constituting each element must be alleged with particularity; the claim cannot be saved by referring to the policy favoring liberal construction of pleadings. (Committee on Children\'s Television, Inc. v. General Foods Corp. (1983) 35 Cal.3d 197, 216.) Since the claim must be pleaded with particularity, the cause of action based on misrepresentations must allege facts showing how, when, where, to whom, and by what means the misrepresentations were tendered. (Stansfield v. Starkey (1990) 220 Cal.App.3d 59, 73.) N&K Defendants argue that Plaintiff’s fraud claim is not pled with the requisite specificity and is devoid of any particular allegations against them. A review of the 3rd cause of action shows that Plaintiff’s allegations in the SAC fail to state what the misrepresentation was, when N&K Defendants (and which of the N&K Defendants) engaged in such misrepresentations, and how and by what means the misrepresentations (or omissions) were made. The demurrer to the 3rd cause of action is sustained.

In her 4th cause of action for violation/infringement of her lease, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants’ willful misconduct of concealing the parties to the Lease Agreement violated her constitutional and due process rights. (SAC, ¶53.) She also alleges that Defendants demolished her “self-defend” shield protection from the hazardous radiation, conducted surveillance of Plaintiff in and outsider her home, and violated her lease by running a dancing school for Asians only. (Id., ¶¶55, 57, 59.) Here, the SAC fails to allege which Defendants engaged in conduct that violated her lease. Again, the allegations refer generally to “Defendants” without distinction or reference to the N&K Defendants.[1] The demurrer to the 4th cause of action is sustained.

The Court sustains the demurrer to the SAC. The Court has afforded Plaintiff multiple opportunities to amend the complaint and has raised similar defects in the pleadings in prior rulings. The overall import of Plaintiff’s Complaints is that someone associated with her mobile home park is directing radiation at her and impeding her ability to defend herself against this radiation. Many of the persons that she has brought into this case have no apparent duty to defend against such radiation. Her theories appear improbable, but the truth of them must be accepted at demurrer unless they are judicially noticed to be impossible. While Plaintiff’s theories approach that threshold, they do not cross it. If a party that owes her a duty is directing radiation against her, there could be a breach of duty. Despite numerous attempts, Plaintiff has failed to specifically identify the person and the associated duty. THE COURT WILL GIVE HER ONE LAST OPPORTUNITY TO DO SO BY GIVING LEAVE TO AMEND WITHIN 20 DAYS. Accordingly, the Court will sustain the demurrer with leave to amend.

CONCLUSION AND ORDER

Defendants N&K, Miyake, and the Guzman’s demurrer to the SAC is sustained with 20 days leave to amend.

Defendants shall provide notice of this order.


[1] N&K Defendants also demur to 4th cause of action on the grounds that the contract was entered 18 years ago in April 2003, and Plaintiff has not brought her breach of contract claim within 4 years the contract was made pursuant to Civil Code, ; 337. (Opp. at p.10.)

CCP ; 337 requires that a breach of contract cause of action be commenced within 4 years of the breach, not when the contract was entered. Thus, the demurrer to the 4th cause of action will not be sustained on this basis.

'


b'

Case Number: *******0564 Hearing Date: September 17, 2021 Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: September 17, 2021

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

demurrer

BACKGROUND

A. Allegations

Plaintiff Dr. Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”, a self-represented litigant) alleges she is the lessee of private land identified as Unit 68 within Skyline Mobile Park (“Park”) located at 2550 PCH, Torrance, CA 90505. (SAC at p.3.) She alleges that from 2019 to 2021, Defendants engaged in willful acts in the Park, including upgrading their “Hazardous Surveillance System” in the Park to include multiple high level intensity of hazardous pulsed laser/microwave/infrared radiation sources. (Id., ¶9.) She also alleges that Defendants engaged in video recording and sharing those videos over the internet. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges other various acts that Defendants engaged in, including making false representations to Plaintiff, dumping large amounts of debris of large cactuses, physically assaulting and battering her, etc.

On July 26, 2021, Plaintiff filed the second amended complaint (“SAC”) for: (1) "Injunction/Petition/A demand for judgment for relief to which the Plaintiff claims to be entitled under LAW"; (2) "Invasion/violation of freedom to practice Religion; Privacy; hate crimes; false imprisonment; endangerment; Repeated often”; (3) "Fraud(s) of: Actual Fraud, Actionable Fraud, Constructive Fraud, and or Actual Malice to Plaintiff”; and (4) “Violation/infringe of Plaintiff’s Lease Agreement Dated 04/01/2003.”

B. Demurrer on Calendar

On August 20, 2021, Defendants City of Torrance (erroneously sued as Torrance Police Department and Department of Mental Health/Mental Health Department) and Jon Megeff filed a demurrer to the SAC.

On August 24, 2021, Plaintiff filed an opposition brief to Defendants [16] and [17]’s demurrer. In her caption, Defendant [16] is identified as “Torrance Police Department; & Department Of Mental Health / Mental Health Department” and Defendant [17] is identified as “Jon Megeff – Deputy Chief / Police Department.”

On September 9, 2021, Defendants filed a reply brief.

On September 9, 2021, Plaintiff filed an additional response in opposition to the reply. Plaintiff did not have leave of Court to file additional briefs. Even if this document were considered by the Court, it would not affect the Court’s ultimate ruling on the demurrer.

DISCUSSION

Defendants City and Megeff demur to the SAC in its entirety and to each cause of action on the basis that the SAC fails to state sufficient facts and is uncertain.

In ruling on the demurrer to the FAC, the Court found that the FAC failed to allege facts against City (a public entity) and Megeff and thereby did not apprise them of the causes of action Plaintiff was claiming against them. In the SAC, the Court finds that the same defects are present. Plaintiff alleges that “Defendants” without differentiation or specificity engaged in actions regarding her lease, engaged in video recording with surveillance at high intensity levels of radiation, made false representations, their employees physically assaulted and battered Plaintiff, etc.

In her 1st cause of action for injunction/petition, Plaintiff requests that: (1) she be assigned a public attorney; (2) judgment be granted to demolish the hazardous surveillance system off the park; (3) she be granted relief from the claim presentation requirement; (4) she be given free movement on the fire/emergency exit route in the park; (5) the case reassigned back to Torrance Court; and (6) Defendants be compelled to identify the management of Skyline Mobile Park and the agents on Plaintiff’s lease agreement. The allegations refer to the Defendants in this action without any distinction. Also, Plaintiff’s 1st cause of action fails to allege facts to support a valid cause of action for relief. It is unclear what allegations are being directed at City and Megeff. Thus, the demurrer to the 1st cause of action is sustained.

In her 2nd cause of action for invasion/violation of freedom/etc., Plaintiff alleges that Defendants’ willful acts of surveillance at high intensity radiation and video recording Plaintiff prevented her from practicing her religion and violated her Constitutional rights. (SAC, ¶35.) Again, it is unclear what conduct City and Megeff engaged in that violated Plaintiff’s rights. The allegations further do not state sufficient facts to constitute a cause of action against them. The demurrer to the 2nd cause of action is sustained.

In the 3rd cause of action for fraud, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants misrepresented their willful acts in the Park to Plaintiff from 2019 to 2021 in writing and in person regarding the surveillance and video recordings. (SAC, ¶42.) A fraud cause of action is a tort of deceit and the facts constituting each element must be alleged with particularity; the claim cannot be saved by referring to the policy favoring liberal construction of pleadings. (Committee on Children\'s Television, Inc. v. General Foods Corp. (1983) 35 Cal.3d 197, 216.) Since the claim must be pleaded with particularity, the cause of action based on misrepresentations must allege facts showing how, when, where, to whom, and by what means the misrepresentations were tendered. (Stansfield v. Starkey (1990) 220 Cal.App.3d 59, 73.) The Court previously found that Plaintiff did not allege her fraud claim with the requisite particularity against City and Megeff in the FAC. The same defects exist with regard to the fraud cause of action in the SAC. Here, Plaintiff’s allegations in the SAC fail to state what the misrepresentation was, when City and Megeff engaged in such misrepresentations, and how and by what means the misrepresentations (or omissions) were made. The demurrer to the 3rd cause of action is sustained.

In her 4th cause of action for violation/infringement of her lease, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants’ willful misconduct of cleaning the parties to the Lease Agreement violated her constitutional and due process rights. (SAC, ¶53.) She also alleges that Defendants demolished her “self-defend” shield protection from the hazardous radiation, conducted surveillance of Plaintiff in and outsider her home, and violated her lease by running a dancing school for Asians only. (Id., ¶¶55, 57, 59.) Again, the SAC fails to allege what conduct City and Megeff engaged in that violated her lease. She has not alleged that City and Megeff were even parties to the lease to begin with. The demurrer to the 4th cause of action is sustained.

Next, City and Megeff argue that they are immune from liability. Except as otherwise provided by statute, a public employee is not liable for an injury resulting from his act or omission where the act or omission was the result of the exercise of the discretion vested in him, whether or not such discretion be abused.” (Gov’t Code, ; 820.2.) Defendants argue that they are immune from liability because Plaintiff has not identified any specific conduct that they engaged in. City and Megeff also claim immunity under Government Code, ;; 845 and 846. Section 845 states in relevant part: “Neither a public entity nor a public employee is liable for failure to establish a police department or otherwise to provide police protection service or, if police protection service is provided, for failure to provide sufficient police protection service.” Section 846 states: “Neither a public entity nor a public employee is liable for injury caused by the failure to make an arrest or by the failure to retain an arrested person in custody.” Based on the allegations in the SAC, these sections appear to provide immunity to City and Megeff’s actions, or lack thereof, and/or their alleged failure to arrest anyone for allegedly causing the hazardous surveillance, laser beams, radiation, etc.

Finally, City and Megeff argue that Plaintiff has not alleged whether she has timely complied with the claims presentation requirement. “Presentation of a claim, when required by law, is a mandatory prerequisite to maintenance of any cause of action against a public entity. [Citation.] In those circumstances in which a claim must be presented, the plaintiff must allege compliance or circumstances excusing compliance, or the complaint is subject to general demurrer. [Citation.] Actions for breach of contract fall within the scope of claims for money or damages and thus compliance with the Tort Claims Act filing requirements is compelled. [Citation.]” (Dilts v. Cantua Elementary School Dist. (1987) 189 Cal.App.3d 27, 31–32.) Compliance with the claim requirement is a condition precedent to suing the public entity. ‘Complaints that do not allege facts demonstrating either that a claim was timely presented or that compliance with the claims statute is excused are subject to a general demurrer for not stating facts sufficient to constitute a cause of action.’” (Rubenstein v. Doe No. 1 (2017) 3 Cal.5th 903, 906.)

In the SAC, Plaintiff appears to acknowledge that she did not comply with the claims presentation and Plaintiff has not complied with or was excused from the claims presentation requirement because she is now seeking relief in her 1st cause of action that she should be granted relief from compliance. (SAC, ¶24.) She argues in her opposition that she has argued and claimed that she is entitled to relief from complying with the Government Claims Presentations requirement such that she is entitled to her requested relief. (Opp. at p.8, ;4.) However, merely acknowledging and raising this argument is not sufficient to overcome this prerequisite. Further, this defect was previously raised and addressed by the Court in its ruling on the demurrer to the FAC, but Plaintiff has failed to cure this issue by alleging that she has timely complied or seeking to present her claim, if possible. Government Code, ; 945.4 states: “Except as provided in Sections 946.4 and 946.6, no suit for money or damages may be brought against a public entity on a cause of action for which a claim is required to be presented in accordance with Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 900) and Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 910) of Part 3 of this division until a written claim therefor has been presented to the public entity and has been acted upon by the board, or has been deemed to have been rejected by the board, in accordance with Chapters 1 and 2 of Part 3 of this division.” Presenting a claim to the public entity and its rejection are mandatory prerequisites to maintaining a suit against an entity. (Nguyen v. Los Angeles County Harbor/UCLA Medical Center (1992) 8 Cal.App.4th 729, 732.) The SAC makes no further indication that Plaintiff submitted her claim to the board and that the board denied her claim, or that she was excused from complying with the claims presentation requirement.

For the reasons stated above, City and Megeff’s demurrer to the SAC is sustained. The Court previously allowed leave to amend the FAC, even though it appeared unlikely that Plaintiff would be able to allege additional facts to maintain claims against City and Megeff. Plaintiff has failed to correct the defects raised in the prior pleadings. As such, the Court will not allow leave to amend as against City and Megeff.

CONCLUSION AND ORDER

Defendant City of Torrance and Jon Megeff’s demurrer to the Second Amended Complaint is sustained without leave to amend. Defendant City of Torrance and Jon Megeff shall submit a Judgment consistent with this ruling.

Defendants shall provide notice of this order.

'


b"

Case Number: *******0564 Hearing Date: July 23, 2021 Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: July 23, 2021

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

Motion for attorney’s fees and costs

BACKGROUND

A. Allegations

As the Court has noted on previous occasions, the allegations of the complaint are difficult to decipher. Plaintiff Dr. Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”, a self-represented litigant) alleges she is the lessee of private land identified as Unit 68 within Skyline Mobile Park located at 2550 PCH, Torrance, CA 90505. (FAC, ¶11.) Plaintiff alleges she signed a lease agreement and the landlord of the park is Defendant Chandler’s Sand & Gravel, Inc. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges that in 2013, Defendants amended the Local Rules and Regulations, which breached, violated, and infringed her lease agreement. (Id., ¶¶12-13.) Plaintiff alleges that she has an interdisciplinary Ph.D. from Tel Aviv University in engineering, physics, and mathematics, and that she qualified as an expert witness. (Id., ¶14.) She alleges that Defendants engaged in surveillance of Plaintiff and her visitors 24/7 on the park land, streets, on her unit, and insider her home. (Id., ¶16.) The complaint goes on to allege various other facts regarding the “Hazardous Surveillance Systems,” whether the system has laser/IR radiation, Defendants’ misrepresentations thereto, etc.

The first amended complaint (“FAC”), filed February 15, 2021, alleges causes of action for: (1) petition for court order compelling disclosures; (2) “For Order to moving Exhibits 1-32 into evidence”; (3) fraud(s), actual fraud, actionable fraud, constructive fraud, and/or actual malice, repeated often; (4) invasion/violation of privacy, hate crimes, false imprisonment, endangerment, repeated often; (5) IIED; (6) NIED; (7) negligence; (8) violation of Business & Professions Code, ; 17200; (9) prayer for relief; (10) statement of damages; (11) “Demand for by Preside Judge”; and (12) Proof of Service.

B. Relevant Background

On September 30, 2020, Defendants Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C., Terry R. Dowdall, Robin G. Eifler (collectively, “Dowdall Defendants”) filed a special motion to strike Plaintiff’s complaint pursuant to CCP ; 425.16. On December 16, 2020, Plaintiff filed an opposition to Defendants 13, 14, and 15’s special motion/demurrer. According to the complaint, Defendants 13, 14, and 15 are identified as Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C., Terry R Dowdall, and Robin G. Eifler, respectively. On December 29, 2020, Dowdall Defendants filed a reply brief. From the pleadings they have filed, it appears that the Dowdall Defendants were involved in this suit due to their representation of persons named in a previous proceeding filed by Plaintiff in which she asked for a restraining order.

On January 8, 2021, the Court granted Dowdall Defendants’ special motion to strike the complaint. The Court took Dowdall Defendants’ demurrer off-calendar in light of the ruling on the special motion to strike. As the special motion to strike the complaint was granted, the Court dismissed with prejudice Defendant Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C. from the action.

On January 20, 2021, the Court entered judgment in favor of Dowdall Defendants and against Plaintiff. The Court also deemed Dowdall Defendants as the prevailing party, such that they may recover all appropriate costs and attorney’s fees pursuant to law in an amount to be determined through the submission of a memorandum of costs and a separate motion for attorney’s fees. Dowdall Defendants filed a notice of entry of judgment on January 21, 2021. In all of these matters, the Dowdall Defendants were represented by Defendant Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C. From this motion it can be gleaned that most of the work was done by Associate Maureen A. Hatchell Levine, although Mr. Dowdall and Mr. Eifler also apparently contributed.

C. Motion on Calendar

On February 16, 2021, Dowdall Defendants filed a motion for attorney’s fees in the amount of $47,351.50 against Plaintiff.

On May 17, 2021, Plaintiff filed an opposition to the motion.

On July 15, 2021, Dowdall Defendants filed a reply brief.

LEGAL STANDARD

CCP ; 425.16(c) authorizes the Court to award a prevailing defendant the fees and costs which will adequately compensate the defendant for the expenses of responding to the lawsuit. (Dove Audio, Inc. v. Rosenfeld, Meyer, & Susman (1996) 47 Cal.App.4th 777, 785.)

REQUEST FOR JUDICIAL NOTICE

Plaintiff requests judicial notice of: (1) Exhibit 2, Reporter’s Transcript (19TRR000943, 12/31/19); (2) Exhibit 4, Lease Agreement; (3)-(5) Exhibit 5, Minute Order (19TRR000943); and (6) Exhibit 21, Federal References. The request is granted.

DISCUSSION

Defendants Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C., Terry R. Dowdall, Robin G. Eifler (collectively, “Dowdall Defendants”) move for attorney’s fees in the amount of $47,351.50 against Plaintiff.

A. Plaintiff’s Opposition Papers

In opposition, Plaintiff objects/opposes the entire moving papers based on common law/family law equitable relief/state laws/federal constitution, fraud, in the interest of justice, etc. However, Plaintiff has not disputed that Dowdall Defendants are entitled to fees as the prevailing party regarding the special motion to strike or that the fees are not reasonable. While she argues that the bills are fraudulent, she has not substantiated such claims with actual evidence or arguments.

Plaintiff also argues that she has a fee waiver in this case and Dowdall Defendants have been dismissed, such that she should not have to pay attorney’s fees and costs to Dowdall Defendants. However, the legislative intent regarding fee waivers is to provide equal justice under the law by providing all persons access to the courts without regard to their economic means. (Gov’t Code, ; 68630.) By way of the fee waiver, Plaintiff was able to commence this action against numerous parties and file various documents and motions with the Court; however, a fee waiver does not shield her from any ultimate judgments entered against her or attorney’s fees motions brought by meritorious parties.

In the conclusion of her opposition, Plaintiff seeks $662,921 as an award for the headache, pain, and nausea that came upon her based on the fraudulent activities. She also requests that Dowdall Defendants be reinstated in the case, that the Court grant her special motions, and she be appointed a public attorney. (Opp. at p.36.) These requests are denied. There is no basis to award Plaintiff these monies. Dowdall Defendants validly brought a special motion to strike, which was meritorious against Plaintiff. It is unclear what “special motions” Plaintiff has brought such that the Court will not grant such special motions. Finally, this matter involves a civil case where Plaintiff has chosen to represent herself in propria persona, which is her right.

B. Prevailing Party

Pursuant to CCP ; 425.16, Dowdall Defendants were the prevailing defendants on their special motion to strike Plaintiff’s complaint. (See Hatchell Decl., ¶¶14-18; Exs. 1-4.) As such, they are entitled to recover their attorney’s fees and costs.

C. Entitlement to Fees

Dowdall Defendants include Defendants Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C., Terry R. Dowdall, Robin G. Eifler. In this motion for attorney’s fees, Dowdall Defendants seek to recover time spent by Mr. Eifler and Mr. Dowdall in defending this action, as well as time incurred by their associates and paralegals including, principally, Ms. Hatchell Levine. The Dowdall Law offices, A.P.C. is a defendant in this action, as well as law firm representing Dowdall Defendants.

In their moving papers, Dowdall Defendants cited to Gilbert v. Master Washer & Stamping Co., Inc. (2001) 87 Cal.App.4th 212. (See Mot. at p.3, fn.2.) In Gilbert, the Court of Appeal stated that “a lawyer represented by other members of his law firm is entitled to recover reasonable attorney fees where the representation involved the lawyer's personal interests and not those of the firm.” (Gilbert v. Master Washer & Stamping Co., Inc. (2001) 87 Cal.App.4th 212, 214.) However, “an attorney who chooses to litigate in propria persona rather than retain another attorney to represent him... cannot recover [attorney] fees….” (Id. at 218.) In Gilbert, the plaintiff did not sue the attorney law firm, but rather it sued the attorney personally for allegedly preventing the plaintiff from recovering its property from the leased premises. (See Gilbert, supra, 87 Cal.App.4th at 214.)

Although not cited by the parties in the moving or opposition papers, the Court finds that Carpenter & Zuckerman, LLP v. Cohen (2011) 195 Cal.App.4th 373 to be more directly on point with the facts of this case. In Carpenter, the Court of Appeal declined to award fees to plaintiffs (the Carpenter & Zuckerman law firm and its partners, John Carpenter and Paul Zuckerman) after they were meritorious on a prior appeal. The plaintiffs had submitted the declaration of Candace Klein, who they “retained” to represent them, wherein Ms. Klein stated that she was not a partner of the law firm, had no personal interest in the underlying litigation, and provided legal services to the firm on an “independent contractor basis.” (Id. at 377.) Mr. Carpenter stated in his declaration that Ms. Klein was at all relevant times during the litigation an associate of his firm. (Id.) The Court found that “Ms. Klein was representing the interests of the law firm for which she worked—not just the personal interests of individual partners in that firm, such as in Gilbert, supra, 87 Cal.App.4th 212, 104 Cal.Rptr.2d 461. Although she was not a partner in that firm, she, as an employee of the firm, acted on behalf of the firm in protecting it from potential liability from defendants' cross-claims. … Based on Ms. Klein's status as an associate, the law firm and its partners, in seeking to recover the reasonable value of her services on appeal, in effect, were seeking to recover ‘lost opportunity costs’ …Therefore, notwithstanding that Ms. Klein was not a partner of the law firm, plaintiff with a direct financial interest in the outcome of the claims asserted against it, she was an employee of that firm hired primarily to perform services for firm clients and, presumably, to generate profits for the firm.” (Id. at 385.)

Although Dowdall Defendants argue that the Court need not concern itself with the question of whether a law firm or partners can recover fees for work done on their own behalf or by members of their firm (Mot. at p.3), the Court finds that this is an important preliminary issue that must be addressed. Unlike Gilbert, Dowdall Defendants did not bring a case in order to pursue their own interests that are independent from that of the firm. Rather, they were brought into this action by Plaintiff as defendants in this action based on legal services they performed on behalf of other co-defendants in a prior action. As stated by the Court of Appeal in Carpenter:

If a tort claim is asserted against a law firm, partners or associates who acted on behalf of the firm necessarily are exposed to liability. As noted above, the Supreme Court in Trope, supra, 11 Cal.4th 274, 45 Cal.Rptr.2d 241, 902 P.2d 259 treated the individual partners as interchangeable with the law firm in connection with the issue of attorney fees for self-representation. As here, if the law firm and its partners or associates who acted on behalf of the firm are named and they are all represented by a partner or associate of the law firm, the principles of Trope and Witte should apply, unless it can be shown that the representation of partners or associates related to the protection of their individual interests from realistic personal exposure. Anytime a law firm sues, its partners will individually benefit from any recovery. Anytime a law firm is sued, any recovery against it will detrimentally affect any partner. And when a law firm is sued in tort for the act of one or more of its lawyers, those lawyers are exposed to liability. In order to recover attorney fees for work done on behalf of individual attorneys in a law firm, there must be a showing that the fees sought to be recovered are not attributable to representation of the law firm. No such showing was made here. Thus, there was not sufficient evidence to overturn the trial court's conclusion that the individual plaintiffs were not entitled to recover any attorney fees.

(Carpenter, supra, 195 Cal.App.4th at 387–388.) The Carpenter court distinguished Gilbert as follows: “Where, as in Gilbert, an attorney is sued in his or her individual capacity and he obtains representation from other members of his or her law firm, those other members have no personal stake in the matter and may, in fact, charge for their work. Not so with a law firm that is sued in its own right and appears through various members.” (Id. at 382; accord, Soni v. Wellmike Enterprise Co. Ltd. (2014) 224 Cal.App.4th 1477, 1490.) The issues in this motion are analogous to those raised in Carpenter.

Next, Dowdall Defendants’ arguments related to lost opportunities/opportunity costs were similarly raised and rejected by the Carpenter court. In support of this instant motion for fees, Maureen A. Hatchell Levine provides her declaration. She states that she has been the main attorney representing Dowdall Defendants in this case. (Levine Decl., ¶3.) She states that the time spent in representing Defendants took away time available for work on other matters for clients who are billed and who pay at an hourly rate at the firm’s members’ respective hourly rates. (Id.) The caption of the declaration indicates that Ms. Levine is an attorney of the Dowdall Law Offices. (See Levine Decl. at p.1.) The Court of Appeal in Carpenter found that the law firm and partners sought to recover fees billed by Ms. Klein as an associate of the Carpenter firm as a means of seeking to recover “lost opportunity costs,” (i.e., the value they would have received from a client had Ms. Klein expended a comparable amount of hours representing that client's interests). The Court of Appeal further stated: “The involvement of ‘lost opportunity costs’ is one rationale for denying attorney fees for self-representation. [Citation.] Therefore, notwithstanding that Ms. Klein was not a partner of the law firm, plaintiff with a direct financial interest in the outcome of the claims asserted against it, she was an employee of that firm hired primarily to perform services for firm clients and, presumably, to generate profits for the firm.” (Id. at 385.) Similarly, here, the Court finds that arguments based on lost opportunity costs lack merit.

For the reasons discussed above, the Court finds that the Dowdall Defendants are not entitled to recover fees for the work performed in this action by the defendant attorneys themselves or members of their firm. Thus, the motion for attorney’s fees is denied.

CONCLUSION AND ORDER

The Court denies Dowdall Defendants’ motion for attorney’s fees.

Defendants shall provide notice of this ruling.

"


Case Number: *******0564    Hearing Date: June 4, 2021    Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: June 4, 2021

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

demurrer of defendant robin famighetti to first amended complaint

BACKGROUND

A. Allegations

The allegations of the 62-page complaint are difficult to decipher. Plaintiff Dr. Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”, a self-represented litigant) alleges she is the lessee of private land identified as Unit 68 within Skyline Mobile Park located at 2550 PCH, Torrance, CA 90505. (FAC, ¶11.) Plaintiff alleges she signed a lease agreement and the landlord of the park is Defendant Chandler’s Sand & Gravel, Inc. (Id.) Plaintiff alleges that in 2013, Defendants amended the Local Rules and Regulations, which breached, violated, and infringed her lease agreement. (Id., ¶¶12-13.) Plaintiff alleges that she has an interdisciplinary Ph.D. from Tel Aviv University in engineering, physics, and mathematics, and that she qualified as an expert witness. (Id., ¶14.) She alleges that Defendants engaged in surveillance of Plaintiff and her visitors 24/7 on the park land, streets, on her unit, and insider her home. (Id., ¶16.) The complaint goes on to allege various other facts regarding the “Hazardous Surveillance Systems,” whether the system has laser/IR radiation, Defendants’ misrepresentations thereto, etc.

The first amended complaint (“FAC”), filed February 15, 2021, alleges causes of action for: (1) petition for court order compelling disclosures; (2) “For Order to moving Exhibits 1-32 into evidence”; (3) fraud(s), actual fraud, actionable fraud, constructive fraud, and/or actual malice, repeated often; (4) invasion/violation of privacy, hate crimes, false imprisonment, endangerment, repeated often; (5) IIED; (6) NIED; (7) negligence; (8) violation of Business & Professions Code, ; 17200; (9) prayer for relief; (10) statement of damages; (11) “Demand for by Preside Judge”; and (12) Proof of Service.

B. Demurrer on Calendar

On April 14, 2021, Defendant Robin Famighetti filed a demurrer to the 1st to 8th causes of action alleged in the FAC.

On April 21, 2021, Plaintiff filed an opposition brief.

On May 27, 2021, Famighetti filed a reply brief.

On May 28, 2021. Plaintiff filed an unauthorized sur-opposition/objection to the reply brief.

REQUEST FOR JUDICIAL NOTICE AND OBJECTIONS

Famighetti requests judicial notice of: (1) the register of actions in Woods v. Way (19TRRO00395); (2) the docket in Woods v. Way (Court of Appeals Case No. B301119); (3) the Notice to Reporter to Prepare Transcript on Appeal filed on November 19, 2019 in 19TRRO00395; (4) notice of default filed on February 27, 2020 in 19TRRO00395; and (5) Plaintiff’s “Exhibit 13” filed on October 5, 2020 in this case, which included the certified reporter’s transcript of proceedings on September 5 and 10, 2019 in 19TRRO00395. The requests are granted. (Evid. Code, ; 452(d).) Plaintiff’s objections to the request for judicial notice (filed April 21, 2021) are overruled.

Plaintiff’s objections to Famighetti’s reply brief (filed May 28, 2021) are overruled.

DISCUSSION

A. Government Claims Act

“Presentation of a claim, when required by law, is a mandatory prerequisite to maintenance of any cause of action against a public entity. [Citation.] In those circumstances in which a claim must be presented, the plaintiff must allege compliance or circumstances excusing compliance, or the complaint is subject to general demurrer. [Citation.]” (Dilts v. Cantua Elementary School Dist.

Famighetti demurs to the FAC on the grounds that Plaintiff has not complied with the Government Claims Act by timely presenting her claim pursuant to Government Code, ;; 911.2, 945.4, and 950.2. Famighetti argues that Plaintiff was required to present a government claim to the court executive officer for the Superior Court as a prerequisite to file this lawsuit against him.

In the FAC, Plaintiff alleges that Famighetti was the Court Reporter in Case No. 19TRRO00395. (FAC, ¶1(c) [referencing “Exhibit 13”].) She alleges that Famighetti was an employee/Court Reporter of the Superior Court on September 5 and 10, 2019. (Id., ¶¶47(i), 90.) Plaintiff alleges that on September 5, 2019 in 19TRRO00395 at the Torrance Courthouse, Plaintiff approached Famighetti and asked to purchase a court reporter transcript for the day, to which Famighetti replied that it could be done; however, Plaintiff alleges that she did not receive an email from Famighetti by September 6. (Id., ¶47(i)-(ii).) Plaintiff alleges that Famighetti must have concealed or suppressed a material fact that no court transcript was going to be produced before Plaintiff’s next hearing on September 10, 2019. (Id.) She also alleges that she had to pay Famighetti for transcripts for an appeal without reading it, which violated her due process rights. (Id., ¶47(iii).) Plaintiff alleges that on September 10, 2019, she had to attend trial unprepared for lack of the September 5, 2019 transcript. (Id., ¶47(iv).) She alleges that she received the transcripts for September 5 and 10, 2019 on October 5, 2020—13 months later. (Id., ¶47(v).)

Plaintiff alleges that Famighetti is a court employee, but the FAC is devoid of facts that Plaintiff timely presented a government claim with the court for the alleged actions of its employee. In her two opposition/objection papers, Plaintiff has not addressed Famighetti’s arguments regarding the claim’s presentation requirement. Thus, the Court sustains the demurrer to the FAC for Plaintiff’s failure to show that she timely presented a government claim as a prerequisite to file this action against Famighetti. It appears unlikely that Plaintiff will be able to amend the complaint to include facts regarding her compliance with the Government Claims Act and she has not addressed in her opposition papers whether she has additional facts to cure this defect.

The demurrer to the FAC is sustained without leave to amend on this ground.

B. Petition for Court Order Compelling Disclosures (1st cause of action)

Famighetti demurs to the 1st cause of action arguing that it is not a valid cause of action and fails to allege facts against Famighetti.

In the 1st cause of action, Plaintiff seeks an order to enforce Defendants’ obligation to immediately disclose her personal file, all records or videos related to her, etc. stored by Defendants and related to the FAC. (FAC, ¶50.)

This is not a valid cause of action of action. Rather, to the extent that Plaintiff seeks discovery from the parties, she should employ the methods provided for in the Civil Discovery Act in the California Code of Civil Procedure.

As the 1st cause of action is not a valid cause of action, the demurrer to the 1st cause of action is sustained without leave to amend.

C. For Order to moving Exhibits 1-32 into evidence (2nd cause of action)

In the 2nd cause of action, Plaintiff seeks an order to move into evidence Exhibits 1-32 filed in this action and that she has been injured. (FAC, ¶¶54-57.)

This too is not a valid cause of action. To the extent that Plaintiff seeks to include her exhibits in the complaint, she should have attached the exhibits to her complaint. To the extent that Plaintiff seeks to admit the Exhibits as evidence in trial, she may do so at the time of trial. Requesting this relief by way of a cause of action is improper.

As the 2nd cause of action is not a valid cause of action, the demurrer to the 2nd cause of action is sustained without leave to amend.

D. Fraud(s), actual fraud, actionable fraud, constructive fraud, and/or actual malice, repeated often (3rd cause of action)

To allege a cause of action for fraud, the requisite elements are: (1) a representation, usually of fact, which is false; (2) knowledge of its falsity; (3) intent to defraud; (4) justifiable reliance upon the misrepresentation; and (5) damage resulting from that justifiable reliance. (Stansfield v. Starkey (1990) 220 Cal. App. 3d 59, 72-73.) This cause of action is a tort of deceit and the facts constituting each element must be alleged with particularity; the claim cannot be saved by referring to the policy favoring liberal construction of pleadings.  (Committee on Children's Television, Inc. v. General Foods Corp. (1983) 35 Cal.3d 197, 216.)  Since the claim must be pleaded with particularity, the cause of action based on misrepresentations must allege facts showing how, when, where, to whom, and by what means the misrepresentations were tendered.  (Stansfield v. Starkey (1990) 220 Cal.App.3d 59, 73.)

In the 3rd cause of action, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants’ misrepresentations were often repeated and are recorded in Exhibits 1-32. (FAC, ¶59.) She alleges that government employees are not immune from actual fraud. (Id., ¶62.) She alleges that caveat emptor should not be relied upon to reward fraud. (Id., ¶64.) She alleges all elements of fraud have been mentioned. (Id., ¶65.)

Based on the allegations of fraud, it is unclear what basis or claim of liability for fraud is alleged against Famighetti. A fraud cause of action must be pled with particularity, which Plaintiff has not done in the FAC. To the extent that Plaintiff is alleging that Famighetti was supposed to provide Plaintiff with a transcript, Famighetti argues that there are no allegations that Plaintiff paid for a copy of the transcript nor are there any allegations that Famighetti had an intent to defraud Plaintiff, that Plaintiff justifiably relied on any of Famighetti’s alleged misrepresentations, etc. The elements of fraud have not been adequately pled.

Further, as discussed above, Plaintiff has not alleged facts regarding whether she has complied with the claims’ requirement under the Government Claims Act.

As such, the demurrer to the 3rd cause of action is sustained without leave to amend.

E. Invasion/violation of privacy, hate crimes, false imprisonment, endangerment, repeated often (4th cause of action) and IIED (5th cause of action)

In the 4th cause of action, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants failed to protect her privacy by creating a hazardous surveillance system that created a database of Plaintiff and her visitors. (FAC, ¶70.) In the 5th cause of action, she alleges that the hazardous surveillance system impinged lasers/IR/pulse radiation on her and her visitors, that caused her to suffer emotional distress. (Id., ¶76.)

The allegations are devoid of facts regarding what actions Famighetti undertook regarding the alleged surveillance systems and lasers. Thus, the causes of action fail to allege sufficient facts against Famighetti.

It does not appear that these causes of action are alleged against Famighetti. As such, the demurrer to the 4th and 5th causes of action is sustained without leave to amend.

F. NIED (6th cause of action) and Negligence (7th cause of action)

In the 6th cause of action, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants owe Plaintiff a legal duty in the restraining case of 19TRRO00395 and as she lives as a retiree in the Mobile Park based on the “LAW”, a 2003 lease agreement, Local Rules and Regulations, the Mobile Parks Act, and based on a fiduciary duty. (FAC, ¶¶82-83.) She alleges that she was damaged. (Id., ¶84.) She also alleges that Famighetti (Defendant 20) owed her a duty of reasonable care as a court reporter for the Superior Court and based on a fiduciary duty; Famighetti breached such duties; and Plaintiff was injured. (Id., ¶¶88-92.) In the 7th cause of action, Plaintiff alleges that Famighetti had a duty to produce timely and accurate court reporter transcripts, but Famighetti failed to do so. (Id., ¶103.)

CCP ; 269 is regarding the duties of an official court reporter. Section 269 states in relevant part:

(a) An official reporter or official reporter pro tempore of the superior court shall take down in shorthand all testimony, objections made, rulings of the court, exceptions taken, arraignments, pleas, sentences, arguments of the attorneys to the jury, and statements and remarks made and oral instructions given by the judge or other judicial officer, in the following cases:

(1) In a civil case, on the order of the court or at the request of a party.

(b) If a transcript is ordered  party, or if a nonparty requests a transcript that the nonparty is entitled to receive, regardless of whether the nonparty was permitted to attend the proceeding to be transcribed, the official reporter or official reporter pro tempore shall, within a reasonable time after the trial of the case that the court designates, write the transcripts out, or the specific portions thereof as may be requested, in plain and legible longhand, or by typewriter, or other printing machine, and certify that the transcripts were correctly reported and transcribed, and when directed by the court, file the transcripts with the clerk of the court.

(CCP ; 269(a)-(b).) CRC Rule 8.130 is regarding the court reporter’s transcripts as part of the appellate record.

Famighetti argues that based on the judicially noticeable documents, the record shows that Plaintiff filed a notice of appeal on September 13, 2019, she designated that reporter’s and clerk’s transcripts as the record on appeal, and on November 19, 2019 the “Notice to Reporter to Prepare Transcript on Appeal” was filed and served on Famighetti. (RJN, Exs. 1, 3.) According to Plaintiff’s Exhibit 13, Famighetti deposited the prepared, certified reporter’s transcripts with the Superior Court Appeals Unit, but the appeal was dismissed for Plaintiff’s “Failure to timely pay fees in the amount of $562.19 for Clerk’s Transcript as required by CRC, rule 8.122(c)(3).” (RJN, Ex. 4.) Her appeal was then dismissed for failure to cure the default. (RJN, Ex. 2.)

Based on the allegations of the FAC and the judicially noticeable documents, Plaintiff has not alleged facts showing what duty Famighetti owed to Plaintiff and how Famighetti breached that duty. Rather, the judicially noticeable documents show that Plaintiff failed to pay for the transcript, causing the dismissal of her appeal. Further, as discussed above, Plaintiff has not alleged facts regarding her compliance with the Government Claims Act.

As the essential elements of negligence and NIED have not been met, the demurrer to the 6th and 7th causes of action is sustained without leave to amend.

G. Violation of Business & Professions Code, ; 17200 (8th cause of action)

In the 8th cause of action, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants advertised the Skyline Mobile Park as a senior park, but Defendants committed acts of unfair competition against Plaintiff and class members. (FAC, ¶¶110-113.)

Again, it is unclear whether this cause of action was intended to be alleged against Famighetti, as Plaintiff does not allege what acts Famighetti engaged in with regard to the mobile park. For the same reasons as discussed above in the Court’s analysis of the demurrer to the 4th and 5th causes of action, the demurrer to the 8th cause of action is sustained without leave to amend.

CONCLUSION AND ORDER

Defendant Robin Famighetti’s demurrer to the FAC is sustained without leave to amend. Based upon this ruling, Defendant Robin Famighetti is dismissed from this case.

Defendant shall provide notice of this order.



Case Number: *******0564    Hearing Date: January 08, 2021    Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: January 8, 2021

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

(1) defendants dowdall law offices, a.p.c., terry r. dowdall, and robin g. eifler’s special motion to strike;

(2) Defendants city of torrance and jon megeff’s demurrer;

(3) Defendants N & K COmmercial property, inc., ken miyake, victor guzman, and manuel guzman’s demurrer; and

(4) Defendants N & K COmmercial property, inc., ken miyake, victor guzman, and manuel guzman’s motion to strike

BACKGROUND

A. Allegations

The allegations of the 54-page complaint are difficult to decipher. Plaintiff Dr. Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”, a self-represented litigant) alleges she is the lessee of private land identified as Unit 68 within Skyline Mobile Park located at 2550 PCH, Torrance, CA 90505. Plaintiff alleges she signed a lease agreement with the management of Skyline Mobile Park on April 1, 2003. Plaintiff alleges that in 2013, Defendants amended the Local Rules and Regulations, which breached, violated, and infringed her lease agreement. (Compl., ¶¶15-17.) Plaintiff alleges that she was has an interdisciplinary Ph.D. from Tel Aviv University in engineering, physics, and mathematics, and that she was assigned as an expert witness. (Id., ¶18.) She alleges that Defendants authorized, created, used, and shared the “digitally searchable Database created by Hazardous Surveillance CCTV System” over the public internet and that the CCTV system includes lasers, infra-red antenna sources with energy beams that sense Plaintiff and her visitors and radiate their bodies with hazardous radiations. (Id., ¶20.) The complaint goes on to allege various other actions involving the Skyline Mobile Park.

The complaint, filed August 11, 2020, alleges causes of action for: (1) petition for court order compelling disclosures; (2) invasion of privacy; (3) violation/infringement of state and federal constitutions, civil rights, discrimination, racial hate; (4) negligence; (5) NIED; (6) IIED; (7) fraud; (8) declaratory judgment(s); (9) breach/infringement of duties and obligations; (10) injunctive judgment; (11) violation of Business & Professions Code, ; 17200; (12) prayer for relief; (13) statement of damages; and (14) “Demand for Hon. JUDGE Trial.”

B. Motions on Calendar

On September 30, 2020, Defendants Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C., Terry R. Dowdall, Robin G. Eifler (collectively, “Dowdall Defendants”) filed a special motion to strike Plaintiff’s complaint pursuant to CCP ; 425.16. On December 16, 2020, Plaintiff filed an opposition to Defendants 13, 14, and 15’s special motion/demurrer. According to the complaint, Defendants 13, 14, and 15 are identified as Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C., Terry R Dowdall, and Robin G. Eifler, respectively. On December 29, 2020, Dowdall Defendants filed a reply brief.[1]

On October 1, 2020, Defendants City of Torrance (“City”, erroneously sued and served as Torrance Police Department and Department of Mental Health/Mental Health Department) and Jon Megeff filed a demurrer to the complaint.

On October 9, 2020, Defendants N & K Commercial Property, Inc. (“N&K”), Ken Miyake, Victor Guzman, and Manuel Guzman filed a demurer to the entirety of the complaint or specifically to each of 1st to 11th causes of action. N&K, Miyake, and the Guzmans also filed a motion to strike the prayer for relief at paragraphs C and E on page 53, which seeks attorney’s fees and punitive damages. On December 10, 2020, Defendants City and Megeff filed a Notice of Non-Opposition to the demurrer.

SPECIAL MOTION TO STRIKE OF DOWDALL DEFENDANTS

Defendants Dowdall Law Offices, A.P.C., Terry R. Dowdall, Robin G. Eifler (collectively, “Dowdall Defendants”) filed a special motion to strike Plaintiff’s complaint pursuant to CCP ; 425.16.

A. Legal Standard

CCP ; 425.16 permits the Court to strike causes of action arising from an act in furtherance of the defendant's right of free speech or petition, unless the plaintiff establishes that there is a probability that the plaintiff will prevail on the claim.  (Rand Resources, LLC v. City of Carson (2019) 6 Cal.5th 610, 615.) In other words, “[a] court may strike a cause of action only if the cause of action (1) arises from an act in furtherance of the right of petition or free speech ‘in connection with a public issue,’ and (2) the plaintiff has not established ‘a probability’ of prevailing on the claim.” (Id. at 619-620.)

The defendant bears the initial burden of showing that: (1) the claims fall within the class of suits subject to a motion to strike under CCP ;425.16(e) and (2) the plaintiff’s claims in fact arise from defendant’s conduct in further of his right to free speech. (Id. at 620; Fox Searchlight Pictures, Inc. v. Paladino (2001) 89 Cal.App.4th 294, 304.)  Under CCP ; 425.16(b)(2), the Court may consider the pleadings and supporting affidavits in making its determination. Subdivision (e) defines the “act in furtherance of a person’s right of petition or free speech under the United States or California Constitution in connection with at public issues” as including:

(1) any written or oral statement or writing made before a legislative, executive, or judicial proceeding, or any other official proceeding authorized by law;

(2) any written or oral statement or writing made in connection with an issue under consideration or review by a legislative, executive, or judicial body, or any other official proceeding authorized by law;

(3) any written or oral statement or writing made in a place open to the public or a public forum in connection with an issue of public interest; or

(4) any other conduct in furtherance of the exercise of the constitutional right of petition or the constitutional right of free speech in connection with a public issue or an issue of public interest.

If the defendant meets this initial burden, the plaintiff then has the burden of demonstrating a probability of prevailing on the claim.  (Jarrow Formulas, Inc. v. LaMarche (2003) 31 Cal.4th 728, 741.)  The plaintiff satisfies this burden by demonstrating that the complaint is both legally sufficient and supported by a sufficient prima facie showing of facts to sustain a favorable judgment if the evidence submitted by the plaintiff is credited.  (Id.)  Under CCP ; 425.16(b)(2), a plaintiff may use affidavits to meet the plaintiff’s burden.

B. First Prong – Dowdall Defendants’ Initial Burden

Dowdall Defendants argue that they are able to meet their initial burden in this anti-SLAPP motion because their conduct was protected under CCP ; 425.16(e)(1). Dowdall Defendants argue that they can meet their burden under subsection (1) because their alleged conduct involved issuing Seven Day Notices, a meet and confer letter, and communicating with clients, which are protected writings or oral statements or writings made before a judicial proceeding that is authorized by law.

In the complaint, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants introduced fraudulent, additional amendments to the lease and they withheld production of documents to Plaintiff. (Compl., ¶17(a).) She alleges that Law Firm of Dowdall represented Skyline and its manager Tracie Flaker in Case No. 19TRRO00395 and filed a motion to quash. Plaintiff alleges that the firm’s motion surprised Plaintiff by contending that the lease agreement no longer existed, and that Miyake’s letter showed that he was the manager for Skyline under N&K, a substitute to the owner of the lease agreement that was the management of Skyline. (Id.) (As noted above, Plaintiff’s allegations are somewhat convoluted.) Plaintiff alleges that Dowdall and its co-defendants knowingly became active park management and injured Plaintiff by denying her information and records. (Id., ¶17(b).) Plaintiff also alleges that that each of the Dowdall Defendants engaged in fraudulent practices in connection with the motion to quash dated August 27, 2019 in the 19TRRO00395 case. (Id., ¶22(a).) She alleges that Dowdall Defendants continue to authorize the digitally searchable database created by the surveillance system and they fraudulently wrote Plaintiff eviction letters. (Id., ¶¶25-26.)

In a prior action, Dowdall Defendants represented the owners and management team of Skyline Mobilehome Park, which includes Defendant Nos. 6-12 (as identified in Plaintiff’s complaint): (6) The Management of Skyline Mobile Park; (7) Victor Guzman; (8) Tracie Flaker; (9) Manual Guzman; (10) Janice Torres; (11) N & K Commercial Property, Inc.; and (12) Ken Miyake. Terry Dowdall states in his declaration that as a result of various breaches by Plaintiff of her tenancy obligations, Skyline instructed counsel to issue a Seven Day Notice to Comply with Rules and Regulations (“Seven Day Notice”) in accordance with Civil Code, ; 798.56(d) of the California Mobilehome Residency Law. (Dowdall Decl., ¶8.) However, before the Seven Day Notice was completed, Plaintiff filed a civil action to obtain a restraining order against Tsae Shya Way (Plaintiff’s next-door neighbor) on May 28, 2019. (Id.) On June 6, 2019, Mr. Dowdall completed a Seven Day Notice, which was forwarded for service upon Plaintiff. (Id., ¶9, Ex. 2.) Around June 19, 2019, the park owner (by service on the park manager) was served with a subpoena duces tecum, requiring her personal appearance at a July 2, 2019 evidentiary hearing on Plaintiff’s request for injunctive relief. (Id., ¶10.) On June 20, 2019, counsel sent a meet and confer letter to Plaintiff regarding the defects of the subpoena duces tecum and asked her to withdraw the subpoena. (Id., ¶11, Ex. 3.) Mr. Dowdall provides the motion to quash papers and Commissioner Glenda Veasey’s September 10, 2019 minute order on that matter in Case No. 19TRRO00384 (Woods v. Way), wherein she denied Woods’ request for a permanent restraining order and dissolved any and all restraining orders. (Id., ¨¶13, Exs. 4-5.)

Here, Dowdall Defendants’ action in issuing the Seven Day Notice and filing a motion to quash are protected activities pursuant to the statute. Filing a motion is indisputably a statement or writing made before a judicial proceeding. (See Navellier v. Sletten (2002) 29 Cal.4th 82, 90.) Further, “[s]ervice of the three-day notice to quit in this case was also protected activity within the meaning of section 425.16”—such that the service of the Seven Day Notice too constitutes protected activity. (Feldman v. 1100 Park Lane Associates

Thus, Dowdall Defendants have shown that their conduct complained of in the complaint constitutes protected activity pursuant to CCP ; 425.16. The Court notes that Plaintiff’s opposition does not address the first prong.

C. Second Prong – Plaintiff’s Shifted Burden

In opposition, Plaintiff argues that the declaration of Attorney Muareen A. Hatchell Levine dated September 28, 2020 should be denied and rejected. (See Opp. at pp.5-7.) The Court notes that the declaration of Ms. Levine was filed as a declaration “VERIFYING MEET AND CONFER EFFORT IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANTS DOWDALL LAW OFFICES A.P.C., TERRY R. DOWDALL AND ROBIN G. EIFLER’S DEMURRER TO COMPLAINT.” The Court notes that the meet-and-confer declaration regarding the demurrer has no effect on this special motion to strike the complaint.

Next, Plaintiff argues that this motion should be denied because she can establish the significant probability that she will prevail on her claim. (Opp. at pp.7-15.) Plaintiff argues that her exhibits will show that based on the laws of physics, mathematics, engineering, and expert opinion, that she will prevail on her claims. (Id. at p.8, ¶7.) She argues that the declaration is based on smeared photos with discoloration, the photo shown in the moving papers is not a photo of her taking a picture because she has never met Mr. Dowdall, and she argues that the light outside a mobile home is stronger than light inside the mobile home and thus it is impossible to take photos of a home’s interior with a camera. (Id. at p.8, ¶¶9-10.) She argues there is no proof that she took property from Defendant Way, Defendant Way has conducted surveillance on Plaintiff, and Mr. Dowdall failed to disclose that Judge Gia G. Bosley found that Plaintiff did not do any wrong in Case No. 19TRRO00943. (Id. at p.9, ¶¶14-15.) She then makes other arguments that Defendants authorized Skyline to demolish a second defense shield that protects Plaintiff from laser radiation, sent her eviction notices, and concealed the meaning of their status as authorized agents of Skyline. (Id. at pp.10-12, ¶¶17-19.) She argues that Defendants have misrepresented the photos and analysis of the hazardous laser beams and have failed to remove the radiation. (Id. at p.13, ¶20.) She objects to the moving papers and argues that Defendants have violated her constitutional and due process rights. (Id. at p.14, ¶22.)

While Plaintiff has provided an opposition to the anti-SLAPP motion, her arguments merely restate the facts in her complaint and fail to address her shifted burden. While she may argue that laser beams cause radiation, the matter at issue in this motion is whether Plaintiff can prevail on her claims against Dowdall Defendants for their alleged conduct when they represented Skyline’s owners and management and filed a motion to quash a subpoena duces tecum in a prior case. Plaintiff has not addressed each of her 14 causes of action alleged in the complaint and how she will prevail on each claim against Dowdall Defendants. Further, while Plaintiff refers to “exhibits”, she has not attached any exhibits to her opposition papers. (The Court notes that Plaintiff has filed numerous exhibits over various dates, but they were not filed as papers accompanying her opposition to this motion. Rather, these notices of exhibits are merely loose documents that the Court will not consider.)

In the moving papers, Dowdall Defendants argue that their actions were protected by the litigation privilege under Civil Code, ; 47(b), which protects any statements made in the course of any judicial proceedings. This would cover the Seven Day Notice, counsel’s communications during the prior lawsuit, and the motion to quash.

Thus, the Court does not find that Plaintiff has established her shifted burden of establishing the probability of prevailing on her claims.

Accordingly, the Court grants Dowdall Defendants’ special motion to strike.

D. Attorney’s Fees

Dowdall Defendants seek attorney’s fees in connection with bringing this motion. They state they will seek fees pursuant to subsequent motion practice.

Dowdall Defendants should file a separate motion for attorney’s fees, which detail what work was done in connection with this anti-SLAPP motion, billing records, and declaration(s) supporting the request for fees.

E. Demurrer of Dowdall Defendants

As noted in the Court’s footnote in the “BACKGROUND” section of its order, Dowdall Defendants filed a demurrer on September 28, 2020. On December 10, 2020, City and Megeff filed a notice of non-opposition to the demurrer. The demurrer is opposed by Plaintiff.

In light of the ruling on the anti-SLAPP motion, the Court takes the demurrer off-calendar.

DEMURRER AND MOTION TO STRIKE OF N&K, MIYAKE, AND THE GUZMANS

N&K Commercial Property, Inc. (“N&K”), Ken Miyake (“Miyake”), Victor Guzman, and Manuel Guzman filed a demurrer and motion to strike portions of the complaint. City and Megeff filed a notice of non-opposition to the demurrer.

A. Demurrer

N&K, Miyake, and the Guzmans (hereinafter, “Defendants”) demur to the entire complaint and specifically to the 1st to 11th causes of action.

Defendants argue that Plaintiff fails to allege facts to establish each cause of action alleged in the complaint, she fails to specifically plead facts against them (as opposed to “defendants” generally), and the allegations are uncertain as to what Defendants did, how they injured Plaintiff, or why they are even named in the lawsuit.

In the complaint, Plaintiff alleges that N&K and Miyake replaced the management “of” Skyline Mobile Park with management “for” Skyline Mobile Park, and that this is false and constitutes fraud in her lease agreement. (Compl., ¶22(b).) She alleges that the Guzmans were inspectors who conducted an illegal inspection of Plaintiff’s residence and informed Plaintiff on June 22, 2020 that no one wanted her there. (Id., ¶20(k).) She alleges that several defendants, including the Guzmans demolished Plaintiff’s self-defense shield. (Id., ¶26(a).)

As currently alleged, it is unclear what Plaintiff is alleging against Defendants. The complaint is 54 pages in length and is very hard to understand. Under CCP ; 425.10(a), a complaint must contain a “statement of facts constituting the cause of action, in ordinary and concise language.” Here, the complaint as currently worded fails to comply with the code. The complaint not only lacks sufficient facts to state a basis of liability against Defendants, but it is also uncertain and vague.

Thus, the demurrer to the complaint is sustained.

B. Motion to Strike

Defendants move to strike the allegations for punitive damages and attorney’s fees from the complaint’s prayer for damages at paragraphs C and E.

For the reasons stated above regarding the demurrer, the motion to strike is taken off-calendar. Further, as pointed out by Defendants, Plaintiff is representing herself in propia persona such that she has not stated her entitlement to recovering attorney’s fees.

DEMURRER OF CITY AND MEGEFF

City and Megeff demur to the complaint on the grounds that Plaintiff has not alleged sufficient facts against them.

City and Megeff argue that while Plaintiff refers to “Defendants” generally throughout the complaint, the only allegations specifically alleged against them are not sufficient to adequately allege any claim against them. In paragraph 27, Plaintiff alleges that Torrance Police Department and its Mental Health Department in 2017 to 2020 engaged in fraud, performed an unauthorized evaluation of Plaintiff, sabotaged her TROs, shared data and videos about Plaintiff collected from a CCTV system, stalked Plaintiff, and engaged in an endless witch hunt and mental evaluations of Plaintiff. (Compl., ¶27.) She alleges she communicated by email with Megeff, asking them to stop Defendants’ “wrongful acts” and to stop the witch hunt. (Id.) City and Megeff argue that the only other allegation in the complaint regarding these defendants is Plaintiffs’ request for “injunctive Judgment” for Defendants to disclose to Plaintiff the identity of Torrance Police Officers. (Id., ¶183.)

As currently alleged, the complaint does not allege facts against City (a public entity) and Megeff and thereby does not apprise them of the causes of action Plaintiff is claiming against them. Further, to the extent that Plaintiff is alleging fraud against City and Megeff, she has not pled fraud with the requisite particularity required for a fraud cause of action. A fraud cause of action is a tort of deceit and the facts constituting each element must be alleged with particularity; the claim cannot be saved by referring to the policy favoring liberal construction of pleadings.  (Committee on Children's Television, Inc. v. General Foods Corp. (1983) 35 Cal.3d 197, 216.)  Since the claim must be pleaded with particularity, the cause of action based on misrepresentations must allege facts showing how, when, where, to whom, and by what means the misrepresentations were tendered.  (Stansfield v. Starkey (1990) 220 Cal.App.3d 59, 73.)

Further, under the statutory scheme in California, all government tort liability must be based on statute. (Duarte v. City of San Jose (1980) 100 Cal.App.3d 648, 653.) Government Code section 815, enacted in 1963, abolished all common law or judicially declared forms of liability for public entities, except for such liability as may be required by the federal or state Constitution. (Cochran v. Herzog Engraving Co. (1984) 155 Cal. App. 3d 405, 409.) Accordingly, in the absence of some constitutional requirement, public entities may be liable only if a statute declares them to be liable. (Id.) In short, sovereign immunity is the rule in California; governmental liability is limited to exceptions specifically set forth by statute. (Id.) Further, in order to state a cause of action for government tort liability, every fact essential to the existence of statutory liability must be pleaded with particularity, including the existence of a statutory duty. (Zuniga v. Housing Authority (1995) 41 Cal. App. 4th 82, 96.) Since the duty of a public entity can only be created by statute, the statute claimed to establish the duty must be identified. (Id.)

Here, Plaintiff’s allegations lack specific facts against City and Megeff and fail to allege what statutory basis she is seeking liability against them. For example, in the negligence and NIED causes of action, she alleges that Defendants’ negligence and negligent infliction of emotional distress created the “wrongful acts” (Compl., ¶¶100, 102), but she fails to allege specific facts or allege a basis for the duty owed by City and Megeff to Plaintiff.

Further, City and Megeff argue that they are immune from liability from Plaintiff’s alleged damages because Torrance police officers are vested with discretion to perform mental evaluations. “Except as otherwise provided by statute, a public employee is not liable for an injury resulting from his act or omission where the act or omission was the result of the exercise of the discretion vested in him, whether or not such discretion be abused.” (Gov’t Code, ; 820.2.) They also argue that the allegations do not clearly state whether Plaintiff was harmed by the mere performance of an evaluation or whether the harm was by the lack of involuntary committal resulting from the mental evaluation. (Opp. at p.6.)

Finally, City and Megeff argue that Plaintiff has not alleged whether she has timely complied with the claims presentation requirement. “Presentation of a claim, when required by law, is a mandatory prerequisite to maintenance of any cause of action against a public entity. [Citation.] In those circumstances in which a claim must be presented, the plaintiff must allege compliance or circumstances excusing compliance, or the complaint is subject to general demurrer. [Citation.] Actions for breach of contract fall within the scope of claims for money or damages and thus compliance with the Tort Claims Act filing requirements is compelled. [Citation.]” (Dilts v. Cantua Elementary School Dist. (1987) 189 Cal.App.3d 27, 31–32.) Compliance with the claim requirement is a condition precedent to suing the public entity. (Rubenstein v. Doe No. 1 (2017) 3 Cal.5th 903, 906.) Here, the allegations of the complaint do not allege whether Plaintiff timely presented her claim as a prerequisite to filing her complaint against City and Megeff.

City and Megeff’s demurrer to the complaint is sustained.

CONCLUSION AND ORDER

The Court grants Dowdall Defendants’ special motion to strike the complaint. The Court takes Dowdall Defendants’ demurrer off-calendar in light of the ruling on the special motion to strike.

N&K, Miyake, and the Guzman’s demurrer to the complaint is sustained. The motion to strike is taken off-calendar. Although the demurrer and motion to strike are unopposed and Plaintiff has not shown how, upon amendment, she can cure the defects in the complaint, the Court will allow Plaintiff 20 days leave to amend the complaint as this is Plaintiff’s first attempt at the pleading.

City and Megeff’s demurrer to the complaint is sustained. Although the demurrer is unopposed and Plaintiff has not shown how, upon amendment, she can cure the various defects in the complaint, the Court will Plaintiff allow 20 days leave to amend the complaint.

Each party shall provide notice of the ruling on their respective motion.

[1] On September 28, 2020, Dowdall Defendants filed a Notice of General Demurrer. The notice of the demurrer attaches a copy of the Reservation, showing that Dowdall Defendants paid $60 to file a “Demurrer – with Motion to Strike (CCP 430.10)” with Reservation ID 271074622835.

Thereafter, on September 30, 2020, Dowdall Defendants filed the special motion to strike pursuant to CCP ; 452.16 under the same reservation number. The Court notes that Dowdall Defendants’ filing of the special motion to strike pursuant to section 452.16 (as opposed to a motion to strike accompanying a demurrer pursuant to section 430.10) is improper.

The Court only scheduled the anti-SLAPP motion for the January 8, 2021 calendar, but did not schedule the demurrer for hearing. The Court has been informed that Dowdall Defendants recently paid the filing fee for the anti-SLAPP motion prior to the hearing on the motion. Thus, the Court will hear the merits of the special motion to strike and the demurrer.



Case Number: *******0564    Hearing Date: December 18, 2020    Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: December 18, 2020

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

motion under state/federal laws and federal constitution for protective order of woods’ wellbeing

BACKGROUND

A. Allegations

The allegations of the 54-page complaint are somewhat unintelligible. Plaintiff Dr. Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”, a self-represented litigant) alleges she is the lessee of private land identified as Unit 68 within Skyline Mobile Park located at 2550 PCH, Torrance, CA 90505. Plaintiff alleges she signed a lease agreement with the management of Skyline Mobile Park on April 1, 2003. Plaintiff alleges that in 2013, Defendants amended the Local Rules and Regulations, which breached, violated, and infringed her lease agreement. (Compl., ¶¶15-17.) She then alleges that she was has an interdisciplinary Ph.D. from Tel Aviv University in engineering, physics, and mathematics, and that she was assigned as an expert witness. (Id., ¶18.) She alleges that Defendants authorized, created, used, and shared the “digitally searchable Database created by Hazardous Surveillance CCTV System” over the public internet and that the CCTV system includes lasers, infra-red antenna sources with energy beams that sense Plaintiff and her visitors and radiate their bodies with hazardous radiations. (Id., ¶20.) The complaint goes on to allege other various other actions involving the Skyline Mobile Park.

The complaint, filed August 11, 2020, alleges causes of action for: (1) petition for court order compelling disclosures; (2) invasion of privacy; (3) violation/infringement of state and federal constitutions, civil rights, discrimination, racial hate; (4) negligence; (5) NIED; (6) IIED; (7) fraud; (8) declaratory judgment(s); (9) breach/infringement of duties and obligations; (10) injunctive judgment; (11) violation of Business & Professions Code, ; 17200; (12) prayer for relief; (13) statement of damages; and (14) “Demand for Hon. JUDGE Trial.”

B. Motion on Calendar

On September 22, 2020, Plaintiff filed a motion under State/Federal Laws and Federal Constitution for a protective order of Plaintiff’s “wellbeing” to stop the Defendants’ “wrongful acts” and to remove the “digitally searchable database created by Hazardous Surveillance CCTV system.”

The Court is not in receipt of an opposition brief.

DISCUSSION

Plaintiff moves for a protective order stopping Defendants’ wrongful acts, ordering Defendants to remove the “digitally searchable database created by Hazardous Surveillance CCTV system” that is located around Unit 69, stopping Defendants’ harassment and stalking of Plaintiff, stopping Defendants from bad-mouthing Plaintiff and defaming her character, to reinstate Plaintiff’s privacy and to stop forcing her to violate her religion, and to sanction Defendants in an amount the Court finds proper. (Mot. at p.5.)

The motion is denied for several reasons.

Plaintiff has not provided any legal or statutory basis for her motion. At most, she seeks relief under state/federal laws and the federal constitution, but she fails to cite in her moving papers which specific law or statute she is relying upon. “The memorandum must contain a statement of facts, a concise statement of the law, evidence and arguments relied on, and a discussion of the statutes, cases, and textbooks cited in support of the position advanced.” (CRC Rule 3.1113(b).) Plaintiff’s papers fail to comply with Rule 3.1113(b).

Next, based on her request in the notice of motion and the conclusion in her memorandum of points and authorities, Plaintiff appears to be seeking affirmative relief, as well as an order to enjoin Defendants from engaging in certain actions. However, to the extent Plaintiff is seeking an injunction order, she has not stated her intention of doing so (or the legal basis), has not shown that probability of prevailing on her claims, or that circumstances exist to impose such an injunction.

In addition, from the moving papers, it is unclear who this motion is directed against—whether it is against all Defendants or only certain Defendants. Plaintiff refers to “Defendants” generally, but it is unclear from the memorandum of points and authorities which party/parties she seeks relief against. She argues that Defendants are stalking/harassing her, but it is unclear who is engaging in such conduct. Thus, even if the Court could ascertain what sort of relief she was seeking, it is unknown who she is seeking such relief against.

Thus, the motion is denied.

CONCLUSION AND ORDER

Plaintiff’s motion for a protective order is denied.

Plaintiff shall give notice of this order.



Case Number: *******0564    Hearing Date: December 04, 2020    Dept: NCB

Superior Court of California

County of Los Angeles

North Central District

Department B

dr. nira woods,

Plaintiff,

v.

department of housing and community development, et al.,

Defendants.

Case No.: *******0564

Hearing Date: December 4, 2020

[TENTATIVE] order RE:

motion under state/federal laws and federal constitution for order disqualify/recuse “city of torrance”, “office of the city attorney” from representing Defendant(s) [16] and [17] and request relief

BACKGROUND

A. Allegations

The allegations of the 54-page complaint are difficult to comprehend. Plaintiff Dr. Nira Woods (“Plaintiff”, a self-represented litigant) alleges she is the lessee of private land identified as Unit 68 within Skyline Mobile Park located at 2550 PCH, Torrance, CA 90505. Plaintiff alleges she signed a lease agreement with the management of Skyline Mobile Park on April 1, 2003. Plaintiff alleges that in 2013, Defendants amended the Local Rules and Regulations, which breached, violated, and infringed her lease agreement. (Compl., ¶¶15-17.) She then alleges that she was has an interdisciplinary Ph.D. from Tel Aviv University in engineering, physics, and mathematics, and that she was assigned as an expert witness. (Id., ¶18.) She alleges that Defendants authorized, created, used, and shared the “digitally searchable Database created by Hazardous Surveillance CCTV System” over the public internet and that the CCTV system includes lasers, infra-red antenna sources with energy beams that sense Plaintiff and her visitors and radiate their bodies with hazardous radiations. (Id., ¶20.) The complaint goes on to allege other various other actions involving the Skyline Mobile Park.

The complaint, filed August 11, 2020, alleges causes of action for: (1) petition for court order compelling disclosures; (2) invasion of privacy; (3) violation/infringement of state and federal constitutions, civil rights, discrimination, racial hate; (4) negligence; (5) NIED; (6) IIED; (7) fraud; (8) declaratory judgment(s); (9) breach/infringement of duties and obligations; (10) injunctive judgment; (11) violation of Business & Professions Code, ; 17200; (12) prayer for relief; (13) statement of damages; and (14) “Demand for Hon. JUDGE Trial.”

B. Motion on Calendar

On September 25, 2020, Plaintiff filed a motion under State/Federal Laws and Federal Constitution for order to disqualify/recuse “City of Torrance”, “Office of the City Attorney” from representing Defendants 16 and 17. Defendants 16 and 17 are identified as “Torrance Police Department; & Department Of Mental Health / Mental Health Department” and “Jon Megeff – Deputy Chief / Police Department” in the complaint.

On November 19, 2020, Defendants City of Torrance and Jon Megeff filed an opposition brief.

On November 23, 2020, Plaintiff filed a reply brief.

LEGAL STANDARD

Under CCP ; 128(a)(5), the Court has the power to control, in furtherance of justice, the conduct of its ministerial officers. This permits the Court to issue an order that disqualifies an attorney from representing a party. (Henriksen v. Great Am. Sav. & Loan (1992) 11 Cal.App.4th 109, 113.) In exercising its discretion to disqualify an attorney, the Court is required to make a reasoned judgment which complies with the legal principles and policies applicable to the issue at hand. (Id.)

DISCUSSION

Plaintiff moves to disqualify “City of Torrance” and “Office of the City Attorney” from representing Defendants 16 and 17—“Torrance Police Department; & Department Of Mental Health / Mental Health Department” and “Jon Megeff – Deputy Chief / Police Department,” respectively. Plaintiff’s arguments in the moving papers are somewhat convoluted and confusing; however, the Court will attempt to summarize her arguments and address each of them.

Plaintiff argues that Defendants are receiving federal and state funds as a result of their wrongful acts (Compl., ¶3.a) and based on this information, the sheriff served on the California Attorney General and “Torrance Police Department; & Department Of Mental Health / Mental Health Department” and “Jon Megeff – Deputy Chief / Police Department” the summons and complaint on September 4, 2020. (Mot. at ¶¶2, 3, 5.) She states that she served the attorney general based on her belief that he would be representing these defendants. (Id., ¶4.) However, she said as a “surprise move”, the “City of Torrance”/“Office of the City Attorney” took over the legal representation without legal justification and without notice to the attorney general. (Id., ¶6.) She argues that “City of Torrance”/“Office of the City Attorney” failed to legally acknowledge service and instead sent a meet and confer letter re demurrer, threatening her with sanctions. (Id., ¶¶7-10.) She argues that “City of Torrance”/“Office of the City Attorney” have engaged in wrongful acts and therefore Attorney General Xavier Becerra should be representing and “Torrance Police Department; & Department Of Mental Health / Mental Health Department” and “Jon Megeff – Deputy Chief / Police Department” so that she has a chance for justice. (Id., ¶¶11-12.)

The Court denies the motion for several reasons.

First, Plaintiff has not provided any legal basis in support of her motion. By failing to do so, she has not stated what legal grounds she is seeking to disqualify Defendants’ counsel—e.g., a conflict of interest or some other issue that would warrant disqualification. In addition, although Plaintiff argues that she expected Attorney General Xavier Becerra to represent Defendants 16 and 17, she has not provided any legal basis for why her expectations on who would be representing Defendants would be grounds to disqualify counsel. She has not shown that by serving Mr. Becerra with the summons and complaint that her case was in any way prejudiced or that her actions require disqualification of another party’s chosen counsel. Further, as pointed out by Defendants, the Torrance City Charter at ; 1010 provides: “The City Attorney shall have the power and be required to: … b) Represent and appear for the City and any City officer, employee or former City officer or employee, in any and all actions or proceedings in which the City or any such officer or employee, in or by reason of his official capacity, is concerned or a party.” Thus, Defendants have shown that they complied with the law by being represented by the City Attorney’s Office.

Second, Plaintiff argues that “City of Torrance”/“Office of the City Attorney” failed to acknowledge receipt of the summons. Moving to disqualify counsel is not the proper means to address this purported failure. Furthermore, on October 1, 2020, City of Torrance and Jon Megeff filed a Notice of Demurrer and Demurrer to Plaintiff’s Complaint, showing that they have submitted to the Court’s jurisdiction. Thus, this is a moot point.

Third, Plaintiff argues that Defendants’ meet and confer letter prior to filing the demurrer was improper because it threatened sanctions. Again, filing a motion to disqualify counsel is not the proper means to address this issue. In their meet and confer letter, Defendants apprised Plaintiff that her claims against them were frivolous because the Torrance Police Department is a department within the City of Torrance and not a separate entity, there is no department of mental health in Torrance, and the complaint lacked merit. Thus, they requested Plaintiff to dismiss the complaint or else they “may” seek sanctions under CCP ; 1038.[1] The Court notes that under section 1038, sanctions may not be sought until later in the proceedings and after Defendants file a motion and Plaintiff has had the opportunity to be heard. Thus, while defense counsel may have warned Plaintiff of their future intention to file a dispositive motion and seek sanctions, this does not amount to a violation of Plaintiff’s rights. It is unclear how this is a ground upon which she is seeking to disqualify counsel.

For these reasons, the motion is denied.

CONCLUSION AND ORDER

Plaintiff’s motion to disqualify counsel is denied.

Defendants City of Torrance and Jon Megeff shall give notice of this order.


[1] Section 1038 states that in a civil proceeding under the Government Claims Act, the court, upon motion of the defendant, shall at the time of granting any summary judgment, motion for directed verdict, motion for judgment under section 631.8, or any nonsuit dismissing the moving party determine whether or not the plaintiff brought the proceedings with reasonable cause and in good faith. If the court determines that the proceeding was not brought in good faith and with reasonable cause, then the court shall decide the defense costs reasonably and necessarily incurred by defendant. An award of defense costs shall not be made except on notice contained in a party’s papers and opportunity to be heard.



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