On October 26, 2021, a federal court judge granted in part and denied in part the County’s motion to dismiss the Jerry Cox v. Mariposa County case.
Of the 14 claims in the complaint filed by Jerry Cox, the federal court dismissed eight of the claims with prejudice, meaning that plaintiff Jerry Cox cannot ever refile these claims.
The claims that were dismissed with prejudice claimed the County engaged in an unlawful taking of property and slandered title by recording notices of violation, breach of certain duties, unlawful interference with his former illegal business, unlawful enforcement practices and negligence.
The federal court also dismissed with prejudice the racketeering claim as to the County, but allowed Mr. Cox a chance to amend this claim against the Sheriff’s deputies. Mr. Cox chose not to do so and dropped his racketeering claim.
“The federal court rightly dismissed many of the claims against the County, and we are confident more will be dismissed as well as the case progresses. The allegations that were thrown out by the federal court were improper and without legal support, and the court’s ruling confirmed that. We fully expect the County to prevail in this lawsuit, which was clearly filed in retaliation for the County holding him to account for years of violating the law. Jerry Cox filed this lawsuit only after the County won in state court, and Mr. Cox now is trying his luck before a different court and judge.”
John Fujii, Silver & Wright LLP partner
The federal court gave Mr. Cox an opportunity to amend some of his claims and to add his company, JDC Land Company, LLC, as a plaintiff. The federal court also denied the County’s motion to dismiss some of his claims.
What is critical to point out is that when ruling on the County’s motion to dismiss, the federal court was required by legal procedural rules to treat all allegations in Mr. Cox’s complaint as true, even if they are not, but the court’s ruling did not claim the allegations had any merit.
The County has another chance to seek dismissal of the remaining claims, which it will do, as they are legally and factually without merit. The County does not believe that Mr. Cox will be able to prove any of his factual allegations at trial. No trial date has yet been set.
Plaintiffs subsequently filed an amended complaint. The County has filed another motion to dismiss additional claims in plaintiffs’ amended complaint. The next court hearing is scheduled for March 7, 2022.
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