United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Asheville Division
RANDALL R. SNYDER JR., Plaintiff,
OHIO ELECTRIC MOTORS, INC., KEN COOPER, ROXANNE WILDE, EMILY RITCHEY, and TOM POZDA, Defendants.
MEMORANDUM OF DECISION AND ORDER
REIDINGER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
MATTER is before the Court on the Defendants'
Motions to Dismiss [Docs. 9, 23]. The Plaintiff, who is
proceeding pro se, has responded to both Motions.
[Docs. 22, 25].
FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
24, 2017, the pro se Plaintiff filed this action
against his former employer, Ohio Electric Motors, Inc.
(“OEM”), and Ken Cooper, Roxanne Wilde, Emily
Ritchey, and Tom Pozda (collectively, the “Individual
Defendants”), alleging employment discrimination based
on sex in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of
1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000e-2(a)(1), et seq. (“Title
Complaint, the Plaintiff claims that his employment was
terminated on April 13, 2016, after Ken Cooper and others at
OEM “unfairly chose to hold [Plaintiff] solely
accountable” for the presence of his same sex partner
at a company lunch following a business meeting. [Complaint,
Doc. 1 at 2, 3]. The Plaintiff further alleges that, rather
than “a simple termination, ” Defendant Cooper
searched through the Plaintiff's company-issued cell
phone and collected an image that he then shared with others
at OEM before turning it over to the Asheville Police
Department. [Id. at 3]. The Plaintiff was
subsequently charged with two felonies. [Id.].
Despite having been charged with criminal offenses for the
image contained on the company-issued phone, the Plaintiff
claims the real reason for his termination was “founded
in Ken Cooper's efforts to cause and do harm to me for
exposing and reporting his [unspecified] inappropriate
behavior toward me and others while under the influence of
28, 2017, the Individual Defendants filed a Motion to
Dismiss. [Doc. 9]. The Plaintiff filed a Response in
opposition to this Motion on October 2, 2017. [Doc. 22]. On
October 5, 2017, OEM filed a separate Motion to Dismiss.
[Doc. 23]. The Plaintiff filed a Response in opposition to
OEM's Motion on October 19, 2017. [Doc. 25].
been fully briefed, this matter is ripe for disposition.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
central issue for resolving a Rule 12(b)(6) motion is whether
the claims state a plausible claim for relief. See
Francis v. Giacomelli, 588 F.3d 186, 189 (4th Cir.
2009). In considering the Defendants' motions, the Court
accepts the allegations in the Complaint as true and
construes them in the light most favorable to the Plaintiff.
Nemet Chevrolet, Ltd. v.Consumeraffairs.com, Inc.,
591 F.3d 250, 253 (4th Cir. 2009); Giacomelli, 588
F.3d at 190-92. Although the Court accepts well-pled facts as
true, it is not required to accept “legal conclusions,
elements of a cause of action, and bare assertions devoid of
further factual enhancement....”
Consumeraffairs.com, 591 F.3d at 255; see also
Giacomelli, 588 F.3d at 189.
claims need not contain “detailed factual allegations,
” but must contain sufficient factual allegations to
suggest the required elements of a cause of action. Bell
Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007);
see also Consumeraffairs.com, 591 F.3d at 256.
“[A] formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of
action will not do.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555.
Nor will mere labels and legal conclusions suffice.
Id. Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
“demands more than an unadorned, the
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009).
Complaint is required to contain “enough facts to state
a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570; see also
Consumeraffairs.com, 591 F.3d at 255. “A claim has
facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content
that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that
the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. See also
Consumeraffairs.com, 591 F.3d at 255. The mere
possibility that a defendant acted unlawfully is not
sufficient for a claim to survive a motion to dismiss.
Consumeraffairs.com, 591 F.3d at 256;
Giacomelli, 588 F.3d at 193. Ultimately, the
well-pled factual allegations must move a plaintiff's
claim from possible to plausible. Twombly, 550 U.S.
at 570; Consumeraffairs.com, 591 F.3d at 256.
Individual Defendants' Motion to Dismiss
Individual Defendants move to dismiss the Plaintiff's
claims against them on the grounds that there is no