United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Charlotte Division
MEMORANDUM AND RECOMMENDATION AND ORDER
S. CAYER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
MATTER is before the Court on the Charlotte Housing
Authority Defendants' “Motion to Dismiss”
(document #28), “Defendant Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police
Department's Motion to Dismiss” (document #30),
Defendants Charlotte-Mecklenburg Hospital Authority, Tarwater
and Woods' “Motion to Dismiss” (document
#34), and the Federal Defendants' “Motion to
Dismiss” (document #46) as well as the parties'
briefs and exhibits.
matter has been referred to the undersigned Magistrate Judge
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) and these Motions are
now ripe for the Court's consideration.
fully considered the arguments, the record, and the
applicable authority, the undersigned respectfully recommends
that Defendants' Motions to Dismiss be granted
as discussed below.
FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
October 16, 2018, the pro se Plaintiff filed her
Complaint against eighteen named and eleven Doe Defendants.
The Defendants fall under four groups: Charlotte Housing
Authority, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department,
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Hospital Authority and the Federal
Bureau of Investigation. In a more than 125 page
single-spaced Complaint that details Plaintiff's daily
activities over a several month period, she alleges that the
FBI has been monitoring her from the apartment located
directly above hers by electronic and other means. She
alleges that the FBI is eavesdropping on her conversations,
following her, intercepting her electronic and paper
communications, fabricating medical records stating that she
is a paranoid schizophrenic, and accessing hospital computers
to upload false information into her medical file. She
alleges that the FBI is jamming her cellular networks,
accessing her laptop and iPads, and placing false information
on her smartphone. She also alleges that the FBI has
“illegally sentenced [her] to death, ” tortured
her, and made repeated attempts to murder her with poison and
a “Directed Energy Weapon.” Document 1 at
She sleeps under a tented electric blanket or a table covered
with tubs of water to avoid these attacks.
alleges that the other Defendants have assisted the FBI and
have violated the Health Insurance Portability and
Accountability Act. She seeks injunctive relief against all
Defendants, including an order compelling the FBI to cease
all surveillance, vacate the apartment above hers, and
otherwise cease interfering with her electronic devices.
reviewing a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, “the court should
accept as true all well-pleaded allegations and should view
the complaint in a light most favorable to the
plaintiff.” Mylan Labs., Inc. v. Matkari, 7
F.3d 1130, 1134 (4th Cir. 1993). The plaintiff's
“[f]actual allegations must be enough to raise a right
to relief above the speculative level.” Bell
Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007).
“[O]nce a claim has been stated adequately, it may be
supported by showing any set of facts consistent with the
allegations in the complaint.” Id. at 563. A
complaint attacked by a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss will
survive if it contains enough facts to “state a claim
to relief that is plausible on its face.” Ashcroft
v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570). “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, the Supreme Court articulated a two-step
process for determining whether a complaint meets this
plausibility standard. First, the court identifies
allegations that, because they are no more than conclusions,
are not entitled to the assumption of truth. Id.
“Threadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of
action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not
suffice.” Id. (citing Twombly, 550
U.S. at 555) (allegation that government officials adopted
challenged policy “because of” its adverse
effects on protected group was conclusory and not assumed to
be true). Although the pleading requirements stated in
“Rule 8 [of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure]
mark a notable and generous departure from the
hyper-technical, code-pleading regime of a prior era ... it
does not unlock the doors of discovery for a plaintiff armed
with nothing more than conclusions.” Id. at
to the extent there are well-pleaded factual allegations, the
court should assume their truth and then determine whether
they plausibly give rise to an entitlement to relief.
Id. at 679. “Determining whether a complaint
contains sufficient facts to state a plausible claim for
relief “will ... be a context-specific task that
requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial
experience and common sense.” Id. “Where
the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to infer more
than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has
alleged-but it has not ‘show[n]'-‘that the
pleader is entitled to relief, '” and therefore
should be dismissed. Id. (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P.
sufficiency of the factual allegations aside, “Rule
12(b)(6) authorizes a court to dismiss a claim on the basis
of a dispositive issue of law.” Sons of Confederate
Veterans v. City of Lexington, 722 F.3d 224, 228 (4th
Cir. 2013) (quoting Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S.
319, 327 (1989)). Indeed, where “it is clear that no
relief could be granted under any set of facts that could be
proved consistent with the allegations, a claim must be
dismissed.” Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. at
328; see also Stratton v. Mecklenburg Cnty. Dept. of Soc.
Servs., 521 Fed.Appx. 278, 293 (4th Cir. 2013)). The
court must not “accept as true a legal conclusion
couched as a factual allegation.” Anand v. Ocwen
Loan Servicing, LLC, 754 F.3d 195, 198 (4th Cir. 2014).
Court is mindful of the latitude extended to the pleadings of
pro se litigants. See Haines v. Kerner, 404
U.S. 519, 520 (1972) (courts should “[c]onstru[e] [a
pro se] petitioner's inartful pleading
liberally”). However, courts cannot act as the pro
se plaintiff's advocate or develop claims which the
plaintiff failed to raise clearly on the face of her
complaint. Gordon v. Leeke, 574 F.2d 1147, 1152 (4th
Cir. 1978) (recognizing that district courts are not expected
to assume the role of advocate for the pro se
plaintiff). See also Brock v. Carroll, 107 F.3d 241,
243 (4th Cir. 1997) (Luttig, J., concurring); Beaudett v.
City of Hampton, 775 F.2d 1274, 1278 (4th Cir. 1985).
amount of latitude can salvage Plaintiff's Complaint. As
the Federal Defendants state in their brief,
“Plaintiff's allegations are dire, but, on the
other hand, Plaintiff's allegations are utterly
implausible.” Document #46 at 2. Plaintiff's
far-fetched allegations cannot survive ...