United States District Court, E.D. New York
Scharlene Flynn-Rodriguez, Ellie Amanda Silverman Novo Law
City of New York New York City Police Department Police
Officer Johnny Cheng Police Officer Anthony Chow, Ashley
Rebecca Garman New York City Law Department Office of
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
B. Weinstein Senior United States District Judge.
original complaint Scharlene Flynn-Rodriguez brought a
melange of allegations against two New York City Police
Department ("NYPD") officers; the majority have
since been withdrawn or dismissed. At trial, the remaining
claims are: (1) excessive force; (2) state assault and
battery; (3) failure to intervene; and (4) malicious
prosecution based on the charge of resisting arrest. At the
close of the plaintiffs case, the defendants moved for
judgment under Rule 50 on the malicious prosecution claim.
District Attorney had probable cause to initiate and continue
this prosecution on a number of criminal charges and would
have continued it even if the police had lied about
plaintiffs resisting arrest. A post-arraignment deprivation
of plaintiff s liberty cannot be attributed to the police, or
solely to the charge of resisting arrest. The motion to
dismiss the malicious prosecution claim is granted.
on patrol in a marked police car, defendants, uniformed
officers Anthony Chow and Johnny Cheng, received a radio
order to arrest Ms. Flynn-Rodriguez for threatening to bomb a
"school in Pennsylvania." Trial Transcript
("Trial Tr.") 298:15 - 21, July 26, 2017; Garman
Decl. attached, Ex. A (Text Messages).
NYPD had received the request to arrest her from Pennsylvania
police. Id. When the officers arrived at Ms. Flynn
Rodriguez's apartment and asked for her, they were
informed by her husband that she was not home. Id.
at 237:1 - 13. The officers left the building; they were
approached by Ms. Flynn-Rodriguez on the street. Id.
at 300:7 - 21. The officers asked for her identification and
confirmed that she was the person they had been sent to
arrest. Id. at 301:14 - 302:14. They succeeded in
handcuffing her, forced her into their car, and drove her to
the 62nd Precinct house. Id. Defendants contend that
plaintiff resisted handcuffing, struggled, flailed her arms,
and twisted and stiffened her body, refusing to enter the
police car. Id. at 275:11-14; 303:1-7.
testified that she was never told that she was being
arrested. See Trial Tr. 31:15, July 25, 2017. She
stated that the officers pressed into her shoulders and back
while handcuffing her and placing her in the police car,
causing serious injuries. Id. at 37:16 - 18.
the arrest, Officer Cheng spoke with Rose Flynn, Ms.
Flynn-Rodriguez's sister in law in Pennsylvania, over the
phone. Decl. of Ashley R. Garman in Supp. of Defs.' Mot.
for Partial Summ. J., Feb. 25, 2016, ECF No. 35 ("Garman
Decl."), at Ex. L (Apr. 9 DIR). She told Officer Cheng
that Ms. Flynn-Rodriguez had sent her text messages
threatening her children and the lives of the children at
their school with a bomb. Id.
misdemeanor criminal complaint, signed by Officer Cheng, was
filed in Kings County Criminal Court. It charged Ms.
Flynn-Rodriguez with the following crimes in connection with
Rose Flynn's March 6, 2013 complaint and Ms.
Flynn-Rodriguez's alleged behavior on April 9, 2013:
• Criminal Contempt in the Second Degree, N.Y.P.L.
• Two counts of Aggravated Harassment in the Second
Degree, N.Y.P.L. §§ 240.30(1)(A)-(B); •
Harassment in the Second Degree, ...