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Omogbehin v. Dimensions International

July 22, 2009

STEPHEN OMOGBEHIN, PLAINTIFF,
v.
DIMENSIONS INTERNATIONAL, INC. AND FLIGHT DIMENSIONS INTERNATIONAL, INC. D/B/A FLIGHT EXPLORER, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Hillman, District Judge

OPINION

This matter comes before the Court on Defendant's Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint. For the reasons expressed below, Defendant's Motion will be granted.

BACKGROUND

Plaintiff, Stephen Omogbehin, a Nigerian-born African male, was employed by Defendant, Flight Dimensions International, Inc. d/b/a Flight Explorer ("Flight Dimensions"),*fn1 for approximately six months before being terminated on May 24, 2006.*fn2 In his Complaint, Plaintiff claims that his termination was motivated by discrimination based on race and national origin in violation of both Title VII, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., and the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination ("NJLAD"), N.J.S.A. 10:S-1 et seq. Additionally, Plaintiff alleges that his termination was in retaliation for an Equal Employment Opportunity ("EEO") claim he filed against a previous employer in violation of Title VII.

In the instant motion, Defendant argues that all of Plaintiff's claims should be dismissed because they are time-barred. Additionally, Defendant argues that Plaintiff's retaliation claim should be dismissed for his failure to allege that he engaged in any protected activity or that such activity had any relation to his termination. Defendant also argues that Plaintiff's discriminatory discharge claim should be dismissed for failure to allege any circumstances that could give rise to an inference of unlawful discrimination.

For the reasons that follow, this Court determines that Plaintiff's state claims are time-barred. Plaintiff's federal claims are dismissed because they fail to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.*fn3 Accordingly, Defendant's Motion to Dismiss will be granted as to all counts in Plaintiff's Complaint.

DISCUSSION

A. Jurisdiction

This Court has jurisdiction over Plaintiff's federal claims under 28 U.S.C. § 1331, and supplemental jurisdiction over Plaintiff's state law claims under 28 U.S.C. § 1367.

B. Standard for Motion to Dismiss

When considering a motion to dismiss a complaint for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6), a court must accept all well-pleaded allegations in the complaint as true and view them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff. Evancho v. Fisher, 423 F.3d 347, 351 (3d Cir. 2005). It is well settled that a pleading is sufficient if it contains "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2). Under the liberal federal pleading rules, it is not necessary to plead evidence, and it is not necessary to plead all the facts that serve as a basis for the claim. Bogosian v. Gulf Oil Corp., 562 F.2d 434, 446 (3d Cir. 1977). However, "[a]lthough the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure do not require a claimant to set forth an intricately detailed description of the asserted basis for relief, they do require that the pleadings give defendant fair notice of what the Plaintiff's claim is and the grounds upon which it rests." Baldwin County Welcome Ctr. v. Brown, 466 U.S. 147, 149-50 n.3 (1984) (quotation and citation omitted).

A district court, in weighing a motion to dismiss, asks "'not whether a Plaintiff will ultimately prevail but whether the claimant is entitled to offer evidence to support the claim.'" Bell Atlantic v. Twombly, 127 S.Ct. 1955, 1969 n.8 (2007) (quoting Scheuer v. Rhoades, 416 U.S. 232, 236 (1974)); see also Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 2009 WL 1361536, at *16 (May 18, 2009) ("Our decision in Twombly expounded the pleading standard for 'all civil actions' . . . ."); Phillips v. County of Allegheny, 515 F.3d 224, 234 (3d Cir. 2008) (stating that the "Supreme Court's Twombly formulation of the pleading standard can be summed up thus: 'stating ... a claim requires a complaint with enough factual matter (taken as true) to suggest' the required element. This 'does not impose a probability requirement at the pleading stage,' but instead 'simply calls for enough facts to raise a reasonable expectation that discovery will reveal evidence of' the necessary element"). A court need not credit either "bald assertions" or "legal conclusions" in a complaint when deciding a motion to dismiss. In re Burlington Coat Factory Sec. Litig., 114 F.3d 1410, 1429-30 (3d Cir. 1997). The defendant bears the burden of showing that no claim has been presented. Hedges v. U.S., 404 F.3d 744, 750 (3d Cir. 2005) (citing Kehr Packages, Inc. v. Fidelcor, Inc., 926 F.2d 1406, 1409 (3d Cir. 1991)).

Finally, a court in reviewing a Rule 12(b)(6) motion must only consider the facts alleged in the pleadings, the documents attached thereto as exhibits, and matters of judicial notice. Southern Cross Overseas Agencies, Inc. v. Kwong Shipping Group Ltd., 181 F.3d 410, 426 (3d Cir. 1999); Pension Benefit Guar. Corp. v. White Consol. Indus., Inc., 998 F.2d 1192, 1196 (3d Cir. 1993) (court may consider "an undisputedly authentic document that ...


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