United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Shreveport Division
MAGISTRATE JUDGE HAYES
MAURICE HICKS, JR., CHIEF JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT.
the Court are multiple pending Motions to Dismiss filed by
Defendants United States Veterans Initiative
(“U.S.VETS”), Carla A. Ford, Brenda Threatt,
Danielle Hanne, Larry Williams, Angela Hicks, Darwin Thomas,
Kellie Hill Bouscher, Matamulisesula Filoialii, and Jessica
Rohac (collectively “Defendants”) pursuant to
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b). See Record
Documents 20, 23, and 41. Plaintiff Pia Holmes
(“Plaintiff”) opposes the motions. See
Record Documents 25, 31, and 50. Defendants seek dismissal of
all of Plaintiff's claims. For the reasons set forth
below, Defendants' Motions to Dismiss are hereby
brings this pro se suit against U.S.VETS, a
nonprofit corporation located in Los Angeles, California, and
several of its employees for allegedly committing various
acts against her that, according to Plaintiff, constitute
violations of Title VIII and other laws, all of which
resulted in her unlawful eviction from U.S.VETS' housing
facilities located in Long Beach, California. See
Record Document 13 at 1-2; Record Document 20-2 at 1.
Plaintiff also alleges that the above-referenced individuals,
in their capacities as employees of U.S.VETS, took further
illegal actions against her such as their alleged acts of
intimidation, false accusations, and “obstruction of
justice.” Record Document 20- 1 at 2. Additionally,
although Plaintiff filed the instant suit in Louisiana, all
of the above-referenced acts which she alleges Defendants
made against her, if accepted as true, took place only in
California. See, e.g., Record Document 48 at 2-3.
contend that none of Plaintiff's claims are actionable
and warrant dismissal for several reasons, including,
inter alia, lack of personal jurisdiction, lack of
subject-matter jurisdiction, and failure to state a claim
upon which relief can be granted. See Record
Document 23 at 1-2. Plaintiff responds that none of
Defendants' arguments asserted against her claims are
legally correct and argues that their Motions to Dismiss
should be denied. See Record Document 44 at 1-2, 15.
April 23, 2018, Plaintiff filed an Amended Complaint, after
having previously filed two complaints that were deemed
deficient. See Record Documents 13, 9, and 1. In her
Amended Complaint, Plaintiff requests an order from the Court
finding Defendants liable for their alleged conduct and
awarding her damages, in addition to any other relief the
Court deems appropriate, because of Defendants' actions.
See Record Document 25 at 20.
LAW AND ANALYSIS
Pleading and 12(b)(2) Motion to Dismiss Standards
8(a)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure governs the
requirements for pleadings that state a claim for relief,
requiring that a pleading contain “a short and plain
statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled
to relief.” The standard for the adequacy of complaints
under Rule 8(a)(2) is now a “plausibility”
standard found in Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly and
its progeny. 550 U.S. 544, 127 S.Ct. 1955 (2007). Under this
standard, “factual allegations must be enough to raise
a right to relief above the speculative level . . . on the
assumption that all the allegations in the complaint are true
(even if doubtful in fact).” Id. at 555-56,
127 S.Ct. at 1965. If a pleading only contains “labels
and conclusions” and “a formulaic recitation of
the elements of a cause of action, ” the pleading does
not meet the standards of Rule 8(a)(2). Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009)
motion pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(2)
allows a party to move to dismiss for lack of personal
jurisdiction. “Where a defendant challenges personal
jurisdiction, the party seeking to invoke the power of the
court bears the burden of proving that jurisdiction
exists.” Luv N' care, Ltd. v. Insta-Mix,
Inc., 438 F.3d 465, 469 (5th Cir. 2006) (citing
Wyatt v. Laplan, 686 F.2d 276, 280 (5th Cir. 1982)).
When a court rules on a motion to dismiss for lack of
personal jurisdiction without holding an evidentiary hearing,
the plaintiff need only make a prima facie showing
of personal jurisdiction. See Rd. Sprinkler Fitters Local
Union No. 669, U.A., AFL-CIO v. CCR Fire Prot., LLC, No.
16-0448, 2018 WL 3076743, at *4 (M.D. La. June 21, 2018).
on a motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction,
uncontroverted allegations in the plaintiff's complaint
must be taken as true, and conflicts between the facts
contained in the parties' affidavits must be resolved in
the plaintiff's favor for purposes of determining whether
a prima facie case for personal jurisdiction
exists.” Bullion v. Gillespie, 895 F.2d 213,
217 (5th Cir. 1990) (quoting D.J. Investments, Inc. v.
Metzeler Motorcycle Tire Agent Gregg, Inc., 754 F.2d
542, 546 (5th Cir. 1985)). Courts may consider
“affidavits, interrogatories, depositions, oral
testimony, or any combination of the recognized methods of
discovery.” Revell v. Lidov, 317 F.3d 467, 469
(5th Cir. 2002) (quoting Stuart v. Spademan, 772
F.2d 1185, 1192 (5th Cir. 1985)).
Defendants' Motions to Dismiss also seek dismissal of
Plaintiff's claims on grounds other than lack of personal
jurisdiction, including lack of subject-matter jurisdiction,
improper venue, insufficient service of process, and failure
to state a claim upon which relief can be granted,
see Record Document 23 at 1-2, the Court finds that
the personal jurisdiction issue is dispositive of the instant
case. Therefore, the Court declines to address
Defendants' other grounds for dismissal.
Personal Jurisdiction Under the ...