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Soto v. City of Bonner Springs

August 31, 2007

JOSE MORA SOTO, APPELLANT,
v.
CITY OF BONNER SPRINGS, ET AL., APPELLEES.



Appeal from Wyandotte district court; GEORGE A. GRONEMAN, judge.

SYLLABUS BY THE COURT

1. Summary judgment is appropriate when the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.

2. When opposing a motion for summary judgment, an adverse party must come forward with evidence to establish a dispute as to a material fact. In order to preclude summary judgment, the facts subject to the dispute must be material to the conclusive issues in the case. On appeal, we apply the same rules, and where we find reasonable minds could differ as to the conclusions drawn from the evidence, summary judgment must be denied.

3. A governmental entity or an employee acting within the scope of the employee's employment shall not be liable for damages resulting from any claim based upon the exercise or performance or the failure to exercise or perform a discretionary function or duty, whether or not the discretion is abused, and regardless of the level of discretion involved.

4. An law enforcement officer's decision regarding if, how, and when to arrest a person is discretionary.

5. A cause of action which alleges negligent conduct by law enforcement officers which results in false arrest and consequent damages is a cause of action for false arrest and imprisonment. False arrest is the restraint of the personal freedom of an individual without legal excuse by any words, acts, threats, or personal violence that under the circumstances the one being restrained fears to disregard.

6. K.S.A. 2006 Supp. 75-6104 is discussed and applied.

7. The decision to arrest someone on an outstanding warrant is a discretionary function, as is an officer's determination of whether the arrested individual is the same individual named in an arrest warrant.

8. Under the facts of this case, the discretionary function exception to the Kansas Tort Claims Act established immunity from liability for the acts described.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Marquardt, J.

Affirmed.

Before MARQUARDT, P.J., McANANY, J., and BRAZIL, S.J.

Jose Mora Soto appeals the trial court's grant of summary judgment to the Unified Government of Wyandotte County, Kansas, and the Wyandotte County Sheriff's Department (County). We affirm.

In November 2003, Soto was stopped by Bonner Springs Police Officer Mark Stites, who noticed that Soto's license plate was loose and hanging. Soto testified that the license plate on the car he was going to drive had expired, so he put a license plate from another car on the car he intended to drive. Officer Stites was told by a police dispatcher that the ...


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