United States District Court, D. Maryland
DEBORAH K. CHASANOW UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
pending and ready for resolution are: (1) a motion to dismiss
filed by Defendants Dennis Schrader, the Maryland Department
of Health, Wayne Noble, and Chandra Wiggins
(“Defendants”) (ECF No. 33); a motion to stay
the court's prior order filed by Plaintiff Robert Joseph
King (“Plaintiff”) (ECF No. 37); and a motion for
leave to file a surreply filed by Plaintiff (ECF No.
The issues have been briefed, and the court now rules, no
hearing being deemed necessary. Local Rule 105.6. For the
following reasons, the motion to dismiss will be granted, the
motion to stay will be denied, and the motion for leave to
file a surreply will be denied.
is a patient at Clifton T. Perkins Hospital Center
(“Perkins”), a psychiatric hospital operated by
Defendant Maryland Department of Health, and suffers from
urinary incontinence. (ECF No. 29). On November 21, 2016,
Plaintiff filed a complaint alleging disability
discrimination in violation of the Americans with
Disabilities (“ADA”). (ECF No. 1). The court
construed the complaint as bringing a claim pursuant to Title
I of the ADA because it related to an employment matter. The
court dismissed the complaint without prejudice because,
although the complaint conceivably stated a violation of the
ADA, it did not connect the violation to any available
relief. (ECF No. 27).
filed an amended complaint on September 13, 2017. In it, he
appears to have copied the factual background portion of the
court's prior opinion. He alleges that he was given an
opportunity to work in Perkins' horticulture program but
was told that due to his urinary incontinence, he needed a
doctor's note. He was next told that he would be limited
in the number of hours he worked and that “if his
disabilities interfered with the job, then he would not be
allowed to work.” (ECF No. 29, at 2). Five days later
he was told that he would not be allowed to work in
horticulture. Plaintiff also alleges that Defendants violate
the ADA “by not providing immediate and readily
accessible restroom facilities” at various locations
throughout the hospital. (ECF No. 29, at 6). Plaintiff
requests an injunction ordering the construction of new
restrooms and that Perkins unlock its existing restrooms.
Although not specified in the Amended Complaint, Plaintiff
contends that his complaint “should now be construed as
a hybrid complaint having both Title I violations and Title
II violations of the ADA.” (ECF No. 36-1, at 5.)
moved to dismiss the amended complaint. (ECF No. 33).
Plaintiff responded (ECF No. 36), and Defendants replied (ECF
No. 38). Plaintiff also moved to stay the court's prior
order (ECF No. 37) and for leave to file a surreply (ECF No.
40). Defendants responded in opposition to the motion for
leave to file a surreply (ECF No. 41), and Plaintiff replied,
(ECF No. 42).
Motion for leave to file a surreply
Local Rule 105.2(a), “[u]nless otherwise ordered by the
Court, surreply memoranda are not permitted to be
filed.” A surreply may be permitted “when the
moving party would be unable to contest matters presented to
the court for the first time in the opposing party's
reply.” Khoury v. Meserve, 268 F.Supp.2d 600,
605 (D.Md. 2003) (citation omitted). By contrast, “[a]
motion for leave to file a surreply may be denied when the
matter addressed in the reply is not new.” Marshall
v. Capital View Mut. Homes, No. RWT-12-3109, 2013 WL
3353752, at *3 (D.Md. July 2, 2013) (citation omitted).
Defendants' reply did not raise new issues, and Plaintiff
has not provided grounds to permit his filing. Accordingly,
his motion for leave to file a surreply will be denied.
Motion to Stay
moved for a stay of the prior order pending appeal. (ECF No.
37). His appeal has been decided, and, therefore, his request
for a stay will be denied as moot.
Motion to Dismiss
Standard of Review
purpose of a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6) is to test
the sufficiency of the complaint. Presley v. City of
Charlottesville, 464 F.3d 480, 483 (4th Cir.
2006). A complaint need only satisfy the standard of Rule
8(a)(2), which requires a “short and plain statement of
the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to
relief.” “Rule 8(a)(2) still requires a
‘showing,' rather than a blanket assertion, of
entitlement to relief.” Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 n.3 (2007). That showing must
consist of more than “a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action” or “naked
assertion[s] devoid of further factual enhancement.”
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009)
(citations omitted). At this stage, all well-pleaded
allegations in a complaint must be considered as true,
Albright v. Oliver, 510 U.S. 266, 268 (1994), and
all factual allegations must be construed in the light most
favorable to the plaintiff, see Harrison v. Westinghouse
Savannah River Co., 176 F.3d 776, 783 (4th
Cir. 1999) (citing Mylan Labs., Inc. v. Matkari, 7
F.3d 1130, 1134 (4th Cir. 1993)). In evaluating
the complaint, unsupported legal allegations need not be
accepted. Revene v. Charles Cty. Comm'rs, 882
F.2d 870, 873 (4th Cir. 1989). Legal conclusions
couched as factual allegations are insufficient,
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678, as are conclusory factual
allegations devoid of any reference to actual events,
United Black Firefighters v. Hirst, 604 F.2d 844,
847 (4th Cir. 1979); see also Francis v.
Giacomelli, 588 F.3d 186, 192 (4th Cir.
se pleadings are liberally construed and held to a less
stringent standard than pleadings drafted by lawyers.
Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007) (quoting
Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976));
Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972). Liberal
construction means that the court will read the pleadings to
state a valid claim to the extent that it is possible to do
so from the facts available; it does not mean that the court
should rewrite the complaint to include claims never
presented. Barnett v. Hargett, 174 F.3d 1128, 1132
(10th Cir. 1999). That is, even when pro
se litigants are involved, the court cannot ignore a
clear failure to allege facts that support a viable claim.
Weller v. Dep't of Soc. Servs., 901 F.2d 387,
391 (4th Cir. 1990); Forquer v. Schlee,