United States District Court, D. Maryland
LIPTON HOLLANDER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
30, 2017, plaintiff Steven Turner filed suit in the Circuit
Court for Baltimore City against defendants Archer Western
Contractors, LLC (“Archer Western”) and Michael
Sutton. ECF 2. Defendants removed the case to this Court
on August 7, 2017, based on diversity jurisdiction under 28
U.S.C. § 1332. ECF 1; see also ECF 25.
Complaint, Turner alleges that Archer Western sprayed
“hazardous chemicals” onto his motor vehicles,
causing the paint to peel. Id. at 1. As a result of
the spraying, Turner got “hazardous chemical on [his]
hands and skin” and also on his face and eyes.
Id. Further, he claims that the chemicals got into
both of his vehicles and that he has “been breathing
hazardous chemicals.” Id. Turner maintains
that he has developed physical symptoms as a result of
exposure to the chemicals, including breathing problems,
throat problems, skin problems, and eye problems.
Id. Turner seeks $20 million in damages.
Complaint is accompanied by two “estimate/damage
report” documents, prepared by MAACO Collision Repair
& Auto Painting. ECF 2-1. Those reports indicate that two
vehicles, presumably belonging to plaintiff, sustained a
total of nearly $9, 000 in damages. See id.
has sent numerous submissions to the Court. See ECF
11; ECF 12; ECF 15; ECF 18; ECF 19; ECF 20; ECF 22; ECF 24.
In most of his letters, Turner repeats the allegations in his
Complaint. Furthermore, plaintiff has sent several exhibits
to the Court, including photographs and prescription drug
boxes. See ECF 17. However, because plaintiff did
not provide a certificate of service indicating that copies
of the exhibits had been served on defendants, I directed the
Clerk to return them. Id.; ECF 21.
Western answered the Complaint on August 10, 2017. ECF 9. At
the same time, Sutton moved to dismiss the case as to him
(ECF 8), supported by a memorandum of law (ECF 8-1)
(collectively, “Motion”), and an exhibit. ECF
8-2. Sutton urges dismissal, asserting that plaintiff has
failed to allege “any facts whatsoever regarding . . .
Sutton's involvement in this matter that would give rise
to any liability on his part.” ECF 8-1 at 3. Turner
responded in opposition to the Motion on August 29, 2017. ECF
22 (“Opposition”). He states: “I Steven
Turner do not want my case dismiss [sic], I want my case to
remain in court Judge Ellen Lipton Hollander for damage done
to my health and the damage to my cars.” Id.
In the Opposition, Turner does not mention Sutton.
Id. Subsequently, Turner supplemented his
Opposition. See ECF 24. Again, he never mentioned
hearing is necessary to resolve the Motion. See
Local Rule 105.6. The Court is mindful of its obligation to
construe liberally the pleadings of a pro se litigant, which
are “held to less stringent standards than formal
pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Erickson v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007); see also White v.
White, 886 F.2d 721, 722-23 (4th Cir. 1989).
Nevertheless, for the reasons that follow, I shall grant the
Standard of Review
defendant may test the legal sufficiency of a complaint by
way of a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6). In re
Birmingham, 846 F.3d 88, 92 (4th Cir. 2017); Goines
v. Valley Cmty. Servs. Bd., 822 F.3d 159, 165-66 (4th
Cir. 2016); McBurney v. Cuccinelli, 616 F.3d 393,
408 (4th Cir. 2010), aff'd sub nom. McBurney v.
Young, __U.S.__, 133 S.Ct. 1709 (2013); Edwards v.
City of Goldsboro, 178 F.3d 231, 243 (4th Cir. 1999). A
Rule 12(b)(6) motion constitutes an assertion by a defendant
that, even if the facts alleged by a plaintiff are true, the
complaint fails as a matter of law “to state a claim
upon which relief can be granted.” Whether a complaint
states a claim for relief is assessed by reference to the
pleading requirements of Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a). The purpose of
the rule is to assure that a defendant receives “fair
notice” of the claims and the “grounds” for
entitlement to relief. Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly,
550 U.S. 544, 555-56 (2007). The rule provides, id.:
(a) Claim for Relief. A pleading that states a claim for
relief must contain:
(1) a short and plain statement of the grounds for the
court's jurisdiction, unless the court already has
jurisdiction and the claim needs no new jurisdictional
(2) a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the
pleader is entitled to relief; and
(3) a demand for the relief sought, which may include relief
in the alternative or different types of relief.
survive a motion under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), a complaint
must contain facts sufficient to “state a claim to
relief that is plausible on its face.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570; seeAshcroft
v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 684 (2009) (“Our decision
in Twombly expounded the pleading standard for
'all civil actions' . . . .” (citation
omitted)); see also Willner v. Dimon, 849 F.3d 93,
112 (4th Cir. 2017). But, a ...