United States District Court, W.D. New York
CHARLES E. CAMPANELLA, II, DEBORAH S. CAMPANELLA, Plaintiffs,
MONROE COUNTY SHERIFF PATRICK M. O'FLYNN, MONROE COUNTY UNDERSHERIFF GARY CAIOLA, CHIEF DEPUTY STEVEN SCOTT, LIEUTENANT LOU TOMASSETTI, and other known or unknown members of the Monroe County Sheriff's Office, individually and in their official capacities,  Defendants.
DECISION AND ORDER
FRANK P. GERACI, JR. Chief Judge.
April 29, 2010, Plaintiffs Charles (“Deputy
Campanella”) and Deborah Campanella (“Ms.
Campanella”) (collectively “Plaintiffs”)
brought this action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against
Defendants Monroe County, the Monroe County Sheriff's
Office (“MCSO”), and MCSO employees Patrick M.
O'Flynn (“Sheriff O'Flynn”), Gary Caiola
(“Undersheriff Caiola”), Steven Scott
(“Deputy Scott”), and Lucio Tomassetti
(“Lieutenant Tomassetti”) (collectively
“Defendants”). ECF No. 1. Plaintiffs alleged that
Defendants took adverse employment actions against Deputy
Campanella in violation of Plaintiffs' constitutional
rights. Id. In broad strokes, Plaintiffs allege that
Defendants investigated, threatened, reprimanded, reassigned,
and refused to promote Deputy Campanella in response to
Deputy Campanella's statements about a local scandal and
Ms. Campanella's association with a political rival.
Plaintiffs' Complaint alleged multiple First Amendment
and Due Process violations as well as libel, slander,
defamation, and negligent failure to train and supervise.
Id. However, in resolving Defendants' motion for
judgment on the pleadings, ECF No. 11, Judge Larimer,
presiding over this case at that time, dismissed all but two
of Plaintiffs' First Amendment claims. ECF No. 24.
Additionally, Judge Larimer dismissed all of Plaintiffs'
claims against Monroe County and the MCSO. Id. The
case was then transferred to this Court. ECF No. 33.
Plaintiffs' surviving claims allege that Sheriff
O'Flynn, Undersheriff Caiola, Deputy Scott, and
Lieutenant Tomassetti took seven adverse employment actions
against Deputy Campanella in retaliation for two things:
Deputy Campanella's statement about the investigation of
a local construction firm and Ms. Campanella's
affiliation with a man who ran as the Democratic candidate
for Monroe County Sheriff in 2009. Id.
19, 2016, Defendants moved for summary judgment. ECF No. 60.
Although Plaintiffs' Response was due by August 16, 2016,
see L.R. Civ. Pro. 7(b)(2)(A), Plaintiffs have not
responded to that motion or requested an extension. For the
reasons stated below, Defendants' motion is GRANTED and
this case is DISMISSED.
Summary Judgment Standard
motion for summary judgment should be granted where the
moving party shows that “there is no genuine dispute as
to any material fact” and that the moving party
“is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A fact is material if it “might
affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law . . .
.” Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S.
242, 248 (1986). A dispute regarding such a fact is genuine
“if the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could
return a verdict for the nonmoving party.” Id.
Thus, when presented with a motion for summary judgment, the
Court must determine “whether the evidence presents a
sufficient disagreement to require submission to a jury or
whether it is so one-sided that one party must prevail as a
matter of law.” Id. at 251-52.
burden of establishing that no genuine and material factual
dispute exists is on the moving party. Adickes v. S.H.
Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 157 (1970). To that end,
the Court must resolve all ambiguities and draw all
reasonable inferences in favor of the non-moving party.
See Giannullo v. City of N.Y., 322 F.3d 139, 140 (2d
Cir. 2003). That said, if the non-moving party fails to
respond to their opponent's motion for summary judgment,
“the court may consider as undisputed the facts set
forth in the moving party's affidavits.”
Gittens v. Garlocks Sealing Technologies, 19
F.Supp.2d 104, 109 (W.D.N.Y. 1998). Once the Court is
satisfied that the moving party's assertions are
supported by citations to evidence in the record, and those
assertions show that the moving party is entitled to judgment
as a matter of law, summary judgment is appropriate.
Vermont Teddy Bear Co. v. 1-800 Beargram Co., 373
F.3d 241, 244 (2d Cir. 2004).
compliance with Rule 56(b) of the Local Rules of Civil
Procedure for the Western District of New York, Defendants
filed a Statement of Material Undisputed Facts with their
Motion for Summary Judgment. ECF No. 60-2. Plaintiffs have
not filed an opposing statement. For that reason, the Court
considers Defendants' Rule 56 Statement undisputed.
See L. R. Civ. P. 56(a)(2) (“Each numbered
paragraph in the moving party's statement of material
facts may be deemed admitted for purposes of the motion
unless it is specifically controverted by a correspondingly
numbered paragraph in the opposing statement.”). That
undisputed statement and the exhibits attached in support
establish the following.
Campanella worked for the MCSO from 1988 to 2012. ECF No.
60-2, ¶2, 8. During the relevant periods of Deputy
Campanella's employment with the MCSO, Patrick
O'Flynn was the Monroe County Sheriff. Id. at
¶9. Sheriff O'Flynn was first elected in 2001, ECF
No. 60-4, 11:2-4, and was reelected in 2005, 2009, and 2013.
Id. at 11:18-20. In each election, Sheriff
O'Flynn ran as the Republican Party's candidate.
Id. 72:23-25. Under Sheriff O'Flynn, and at all
times relevant to the issues in this case, Gary Caiola was
the Undersheriff. ECF No. 60-2, ¶10. Steven Scott was
the Chief Deputy. Id. at ¶11. Lucio Tomassetti
was the Special Operations Commander. Id. at
Campanella is a real estate broker and insurance producer.
ECF No. 60-6, 6-7. She is also active in local government.
ECF No. 60-6, 18:3. In 2008, Ms. Campanella won the
Republican Party's endorsement for a town council seat
for the Town of Riga. Id. at 50:7-9; ECF No. 60-2,
¶16. In 2009, she won in the general election.
Id. She ran in the 2009 general election on the same
ticket as Sheriff O'Flynn. ECF No. 60-6, 50:7-9.
2008, Ms. Campanella began working as a part-time business
manager for Leader Security Services (“Leader”).
ECF No. 60-2, ¶17. Leader was founded by Daniel Greene.
Id. at ¶14. Before founding Leader, Greene
worked for the MCSO as an undersheriff under Sheriff
O'Flynn. Id. at ¶9, 13. On May 9, 2009,
Greene announced that he was running for Sheriff, as the
Democratic Candidate, against O'Flynn. Id. at
¶15. Ms. Campanella worked for Leader until December
2012. ECF No. 60-6, 21:10-12.
Deputy Campanella's Employment at the MCSO
Campanella began working as a deputy sheriff for the MCSO in
1988. ECF No. 60-2, ¶1. He retired from that position on
June 23, 2012. Id. at ¶8. During his 24 years
at the MCSO, Deputy Campanella's duties and assignments
varied. Id. at ¶3-7. From 1988 until 1990,
Deputy Campanella worked as a part-time Deputy Sheriff. ECF
No. 60-3. In 1990, Deputy Campanella became a full-time, Road
Patrol Deputy. Id. Approximately two or three years
later, Deputy Campanella was assigned to his first special
assignment, the DARE program. Id. After three or
four years in the DARE Program, Deputy Campanella was
assigned to the Warrant Unit. Id. After spending
three or four years in the Warrant Unit, Deputy Campanella
was assigned to the Narcotics Unit. Id. In 2005,
Deputy Campanella was assigned to the Community Services Unit
as a Crime Prevention Officer (“CPO”).
Id.; see also ECF No. 60-2, ¶34, 41.
He served as a CPO until 2009. ECF Nos. 60-2, ¶41; 60-3.
On January 25, 2010, Deputy Campanella was reassigned to Road
Patrol. ECF No. 60-2, ¶44.
carrying out his road patrol and special assignment duties,
Deputy Campanella also performed other duties for the MCSO.
ECF No. 60-3. Deputy Campanella was a member of the SWAT team
for 14 years, between 1994 and 2008, and a SWAT Team Leader
for four years, from 2008 until his retirement. Id.;
see also ECF No. 60-2, ¶3-6. Deputy Campanella
took on additional road patrol duties. ECF No. 60-3, 99:4-8.
Deputy Campanella was a firearms instructor during Police
Academy classes. ECF No. 60-2, ¶7. Lastly, Deputy
Campanella's duties as a member of the Community Services
Unit involved leading a range of community programs.
Id. at ¶91-93. Those programs included Senior
Citizens Academy, Fatal Crash Simulations, firearms and
alcohol safety talks, Neighborhood Watch meetings, and
Operation Safe Child. Id. at ¶93; see
also ECF No. 60-3. The Operation Safe Child program
involves operating a machine that creates identification
cards for children. ECF No. 60-2, ¶91.
CPO, Deputy Campanella's standard hours were Monday
through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. ECF No. 60-3, 41:10.
But taking on additional duties and participating in
community programs often required him to work evenings and
weekends. Id. at 35:12-20 (Deputy Campanella led
firearms safety talks in the evenings); id. at
41:16-22 (same for Neighborhood Watch); id. at
45:5-8 (SWAT operations often required Deputy Campanella to
work evenings and weekends); id. at 99:4-8 (same for
road patrol shifts); id. at 123:20-23 (Deputy
Campanella operated the Operation Safe Child machine on the
weekends). When Deputy Campanella worked in the evening or
over the weekend, he received overtime pay. Id. at
Deputy Campanella's Employment at the MCSO ...