The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its opinion in Klen v. City of Loveland on Tuesday, November 15, 2011.
The Tenth Circuit affirmed in part and reversed in part the district court’s decision. Petitioners brought this civil rights action against Respondent City of Loveland, Colorado (City) and various City employees, alleging many constitutional violations. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Respondent on the federal claims and declined to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over the state-law claims. Petitioners appeal from the district court’s award of summary judgment to Respondent.
The Court determined that the district court only considered the first element of the test for Petitioners’ First Amendment retaliation claim, “that the plaintiff was engaged in constitutionally protected activity;” because the analysis of that element was insufficient, the issue was remanded. In Petitioners’ substantive due process claim, they allege that Respondent “engaged in a continuous campaign of harassment, deceit, and delay . . . intended to injure . . . in a way unjustifiable by any government interest.” The Court found that an arbitrary deprivation of a property right may violate the substantive component of the Due Process Clause if the arbitrariness is extreme, but that extremity was not present here.
Additionally, the Court found that Petitioners have produced sufficient evidence to survive summary judgment regarding an alleged Fourth Amendment violation by ordering an unauthorized “special inspection” of the premises. Lastly, Petitioner’s “no contest plea does not foreclose his due process challenge to the knowing use of a perjured affidavit to defeat his defense of selective prosecution.”