United States District Court, D. Maryland
LINDA A. DIAS Plaintiff
STATE OF MD JUDICIARY, TAMARA CHESTER, KRIS DONAGHY, CAMILLE BLAKE, KATHLEEN SNOWDEN, and ELAINE ALLEN Defendants
L. Hollander, United States District Judge
self-represented plaintiff, Linda Dias, is an employee of the
Maryland judiciary. On November 1, 2017, she filed suit
against a host of defendants, including the “State of
MD Judiciary.” ECF 1. Dias asserted violations of the
“Americans With Disability Act”
(“ADA”) and “Title I (Employment).”
Id. at 4.
December 1, 2017, plaintiff was granted 28 days to supplement
her complaint. ECF 2. In directing plaintiff to supplement
the complaint, the court noted that it could not discern
whether plaintiff had stated a cognizable claim. Id.
has not filed an amended complaint. Instead, on December 21,
2017, plaintiff filed “supplemental information,
” consisting of eight three-ring binders filled with
documents marked as “exhibits.” ECF 3. The
submission is so voluminous that the documents were not
scanned into this court's electronic docket. Rather, they
were filed in paper format only. Dias has not attempted to
explain the relevance of the exhibits or how the exhibits
serve to illuminate the claims she is asserting.
“exhibit” provides a partial narrative of
plaintiff's claims, but it is not identified as an
amended complaint. See ECF 3 at Ex. D-2 - D-4.
Included among the other exhibits provided by plaintiff are
copies of excerpts from an employee handbook for the Maryland
Judiciary published by the Judiciary Office of Fair Practices
(Ex. A); a copy of the Maryland Judiciary policy on the ADA
Act (Ex. B); a copy of plaintiff's job description as a
Drug Court Coordinator in the Anne Arundel County District
Court (Ex. C); EEOC intake forms (Ex. E); emails and
correspondence between plaintiff and her supervisors (Ex. F -
J); a letter of March 16, 2016, from the Maryland
Judiciary's Office of Fair Practice, closing its
investigation into plaintiff's claims (Ex. S); a letter
of April 11, 2017, from the Maryland Commission on Civil
Rights stating there is no probable cause to believe a
violation of law occurred in plaintiff's case (Ex. T);
plaintiff's job performance evaluations (Ex. OO - ZZ-7);
Explanation of Benefits from plaintiff's health insurance
company and medical bills (Ex. AAA - AAA-189); a handwritten
daily log of activities at plaintiff's work site (Ex.
BBB); plaintiff's time sheets (Ex. CCC); and more than
100 pages of pictures of an office cubicle (Ex. DDD -
complaint, as supplemented, fails to conform with basic
pleading requirements as set forth in Fed. Rule of Civ. Proc.
8(a)(2). The Rule requires “a short and plain statement
of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to
relief.” And, Rule 8(e)(1) requires that each averment
of a pleading be “simple, concise, and direct.”
Moreover, a pleading must give the court and the defendants
“‘fair notice of what the plaintiff's claim
is and the grounds upon which it rests.'”
Swirkiewicz v. Sorema N.A., 534 U.S. 506, 512 (2002)
(quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 47 (1957)).
nature of plaintiff's claims may be buried somewhere in
the 800 plus pages of exhibits she filed. But, there is no
discernible method to locate which of the documents presented
contain the statement of plaintiff's intended
claims. And, it is not the role of this court to
sort through the numerous pages of documents submitted to
piece together the claims plaintiff may have intended to
raise, or to attempt to discern the evidentiary value of the
information contained in the documents. The complaint, as
supplemented, “places an unjustifiable burden on
defendants to determine the nature of the claim against them
and to speculate on what their defenses might be, ” and
also imposes an undue burden on the court to sort out the
factual basis of any claims fairly raised. Holsey v.
Collins, 90 F.R.D. 122 (D. Md. 1981); see also
Spencer v. Hedges, 838 F.2d 1210 (Table) (4th Cir.
sure, a district court has a duty to construe liberally the
pleadings of a self-represented litigant. Erickon v.
Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007). Nevertheless, plaintiff
must allege facts that state a cause of action. See
Beaudett v. Hampton, 775 F.2d 1274, 1278 (4th Cir. 1985)
(stating that duty to construe liberally does not require
courts to conjure up questions never squarely presented). In
short, it is plaintiff's responsibility to construct the
claims that comprise the basis for the complaint, not that of
the court or the defendants.
light of the fact that plaintiff paid the full filing fee,
and out of an abundance of caution, plaintiff will be granted
a brief opportunity to file an amended complaint stating only
the facts giving rise to her claims that she has been
subjected to discrimination. In filing an amended complaint,
plaintiff is reminded to limit the pleading to a concise
narrative of the events involving the named defendants. That
narrative should describe the events and include the dates of
the events as well as identification of the persons involved.
plaintiff is forewarned that failure to file an amended
complaint that complies with the guidelines contained in Fed.
Rule of Civ. Proc. 8 will result in dismissal of the
complaint, without prejudice.
 Plaintiff is advised that a complete
and accurate copy all documents filed with the court as part
of her complaint must be served on each defendant when and if
the complaint is served. The cost for providing such copies