FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF
MAINE [Hon. John A. Woodcock, Jr., U.S. District Judge]
S. Whitman, with whom Heidi J. Hart and Richardson, Whitman,
Large & Badger were on brief, for appellant.
F. Hallett, with whom Timothy E. Zerillo and Hallett,
Zerillo, Whipple, P.A. were on brief, for appellee.
J. Drake, with whom Zachary L. Heiden and Ezekiel Edwards
were on brief, for amici curiae American Civil Liberties
Union and American Civil Liberties Union of Maine Foundation;
and Rory A. McNamara and Drake Law, LLC, on brief for amicus
curiae Maine Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
Lynch, Stahl, and Barron, Circuit Judges.
BARRON, Circuit Judge.
appeal arises out of the state prosecution of Vladek Filler
in 2009. He was initially indicted on five counts of gross
sexual assault and two counts of assault of his then-wife
Ligia Arguetta Filler. After two trials -- and two appeals to
the Maine Law Court -- he was convicted only of one
misdemeanor assault count, which he is still challenging. In
the wake of these events, Filler filed a civil action against
a number of defendants under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, including
a claim against the prosecuting attorney, then-Hancock County
Assistant District Attorney Mary Kellett, for malicious
prosecution. Kellett chose to challenge the suit by a
12(b)(6) motion on the sprawling pleadings, rather than
allowing for the development of any facts or providing a
defense based on the undisputed facts on summary judgment.
Kellett now brings an interlocutory appeal from the District
Court's order denying her absolute prosecutorial immunity
from certain of Filler's claims against her. We dismiss
the appeal for lack of jurisdiction.
a narrow subset of the many issues involved in this case are
raised in this appeal, we recount just the relevant facts, as
set forth in Filler's 103-page Amended Complaint and the
District Court's opinion. Because this case comes to us
as an interlocutory appeal, we assume "that the
Plaintiff['s] allegations regarding the Defendant['s]
authority, duties, acts and omissions are true, and that they
are sufficient to allege a violation of federal rights."
Guzman-Rivera v. Rivera-Cruz, 55 F.3d 26, 28 (1st Cir. 1995);
see also Buckley v. Fitzsimmons, 509 U.S. 259, 261
(1993) (in reviewing denial of motion to dismiss upon finding
no absolute immunity, "we make two important assumptions
about the case: first, that petitioner's allegations are
entirely true; and, second, that they allege constitutional
violations for which § 1983 provides a remedy").
Accordingly, we recount the events at issue as the complaint
was married to Ligia Filler, now known as Isabella L.
Arguetta ("Arguetta") in 1995. Filler and Arguetta
subsequently had two children together. In 2007, Filler
initiated a separation from Arguetta, and made plans to
relocate with their children to another state. On April 24,
2007, Arguetta was involuntarily hospitalized at a
psychiatric facility. She then made a series of allegations
of abuse against Filler for the purpose of gaining custody
over the children.
was arrested on April 26, 2007, without a
warrant. He was charged with gross sexual
assault of Arguetta, and subject to a number of post-arrest
restrictions. Upon arrest, Filler was held overnight without
bail. On April 27, a bail hearing was held and he was allowed
bail. His house remained subject to a bail lien for the next
Police Chief Guy Wycoff threatened to arrest Filler if Filler
was released on bail and returned to his home. Filler
therefore was forced to live in a hotel from April 27, 2007
until May 1, 2007, when Filler's attorney confirmed with
Wycoff that Wycoff "had no authority nor any court order
to bar or arrest [Filler] for returning to his own
house." After returning to his home, Filler remained
subject to a number of post-arrest restrictions, including
restrictions on contact with his children, and a curfew from
8:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.
August 8, 2007, a grand jury indicted Filler on five counts
of Class A gross sexual assault and two counts of Class D
assault. In January 2009, after trial, Filler was convicted
of one count of Class A gross sexual assault and two
misdemeanor charges of assault on Arguetta. The trial court
subsequently overturned the guilty verdict and ordered a new
trial based upon the trial court's finding of
prosecutorial misconduct. These rulings were upheld by the
Maine Law Court over Kellett's appeal.
the Maine Law Court's ruling, Kellett told a local
newspaper that she intended to "retry [Filler] on the
three remaining charges." At the second trial, which
took place in May 2011 and was conducted by a separate
prosecutor, the jury acquitted Filler of all counts except
one count of Class D assault. As the District Court
highlighted, after the second trial was completed, the Maine
Supreme Judicial Court "imposed discipline against . . .
Kellett for a number of violations of the Maine Rules of
Professional Conduct, the first disciplinary proceeding ever
filed with the Maine Supreme Judicial ...