United States District Court, S.D. Mississippi, Southern Division
KESHAV G. MANGAL and MUKESH MANGAL PLAINTIFFS
CITY OF PASCAGOULA, JACKSON COUNTY, MS DEFENDANT
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND
DENYING IN PART DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS FIRST
GUIROLA, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
THE COURT is the  Motion to Dismiss First
Amended Complaint filed by Defendant City of Pascagoula. The
Motion argues that Plaintiffs' Complaint should be
dismissed because res judicata bars Plaintiff's
claims and Plaintiffs otherwise fail to state a claim for
relief. The Motion is fully briefed. Having considered the
submissions of the parties, the record, and relevant law, the
Court finds that Defendant's Motion to Dismiss should be
granted in part and denied in part. It will be denied to the
extent that Plaintiffs state a takings claim under the Fifth
Amendment and otherwise granted.
Court dismissed Plaintiffs' original Complaint for
failure to state a claim. (See Mem. Op. & Order
Granting Defendant's Motion to Dismiss, ECF No. 14.)
Plaintiffs were granted leave to amend their allegations to
state a claim for relief and have filed their  First
Amended Complaint. The First Amended Complaint contains no
new factual allegations but attempts to better articulate
violations of Plaintiffs' constitutional rights pursuant
to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Keshav Mangal and Mukesh Mangal owned a four-plex property
located on Jackson Avenue in Pascagoula, Mississippi.
Plaintiffs allege that the City of Pascagoula attempted to
exercise eminent domain and take their property under a
“quick take” procedure, see Miss. Code
Ann. §§ 11-27-81 to 89, for the purpose of
expanding city-owned athletic fields. The City filed suit in
the Special Court of Eminent Domain of Jackson County,
Mississippi, paid 85% of a court-appointed appraiser's
determined appraisal value for their property into the
eminent domain court's registry, and gained immediate
possession of Plaintiff's property. Plaintiffs assert
that the City had no right to utilize the statutory
“quick take” procedure - and had received legal
counsel that the “quick take” procedure was
inapplicable under the circumstances - but nonetheless did so
and mailed Plaintiffs' four-plex tenants a letter
advising that the tenants should vacate the premises because
the property was to be condemned.
in the state court record, which are attached to the
City's Motion to Dismiss, indicate that the Court of
Eminent Domain initially granted the City the right of
immediate title and possession of Plaintiffs' property on
August 2, 2018 (see Mot. Dismiss Ex. A, at 80-81,
ECF No. 19-1), but then set aside that decision by agreed
order on October 16, 2018. (See Id. at 36.) On
January 7, 2019, the Court of Eminent Domain entered an
Agreed Final Judgment, which stated the following:
The Court is advised that a compromise settlement has been
reached between the parties, fixing Defendants, Keshav G.
Mangal and Mukesh K. Mangal, total compensation and damages
in the amount of $160, 000.00; and that all issues before the
Court have now been resolved between the parties. The Court,
being fully advised in the premises, accepts said settlement
agreement, with the parties being bound hereto as if there
had been a complete trial by jury and a Judgment rendered
IT IS THEREFORE, ORDERED AND ADJUDGED that
this Agreed Final Judgment be entered in this cause; that the
completion of a trial by jury is waived by all parties; that
total compensation and damages due to Defendants, Keshav G.
Mangal and Mukesh K. Mangal, is $160, 000.00; inclusive of
any additional amounts that may be allowed by statute or
otherwise with the sole exception of Defendants'
claims regarding removal of their tenants and the use of
‘quick take' by the City . . . .
(Id. at 12-13 (emphasis added).)
Agreed Final Judgment entered in the Court of Eminent Domain
apparently did not dispose of all of Plaintiffs' claims
related to the City's exercise of eminent domain over
their four-plex. Explicitly not resolved by the Agreed Final
Judgment was Plaintiffs' claim that the City's
reliance on Mississippi's statutory “quick
take” procedure to take immediate possession of the
property was unlawful.
allege that the City “engaged in a course of conduct
that resulted in the violation of the Plaintiffs'
right[s]” to equal protection under the law and
procedural and substantive due process of law pursuant to the
Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments and the corresponding
provisions of the Mississippi state constitution. (Am. Compl.
2, ECF No. 15.) They also reassert a takings claim under the
Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments and corresponding provisions
of the Mississippi constitution. (Id. at 2-3.)
City filed the instant Motion to Dismiss on August 22, 2019.
The Motion argues (1) that Plaintiffs' claims are barred
by the doctrines of res judicata and claim splitting
and (2) that Plaintiffs otherwise fail to state a violation
of their constitutional rights.
Motion to ...