There is no § 1983 when officers had probable cause to support the arrest


Percy Utley filed suit under 42 U.S.C. §1983 against the City of Houston, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo, and John Doe Officers, for alleged violations of his First, Fourth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights that occurred when he was arrested during a protest following the death of George Floyd.

The district court granted the defendants’ motion to dismiss pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), concluding that Utley’s first amended complaint was insufficient to state a claim and his proposed second amended complaint failed to cure the deficiencies. Utley appeals, contending that the district court erred by dismissing his complaint and by denying his motion to amend his complaint. We affirm.


Utley’s Fourth Amendment claim fails because there was probable cause to support his arrest. See Deville. Also, Utley was not engaged in constitutionally protected activity when he was arrested—he was obstructing a roadway in violation of Tex. Penal Code § 42.03—so his First Amendment retaliation claim fails.

Third, Utley did not support his Fourteenth Amendment claim with anything more than conclusory allegations insufficient to state a claim under Rule 12(b)(6). Finally, Utley’s claim against the City of Houston fails because he does not identify any official municipal policy that caused the alleged constitutional violations.