§ 1331 to hear plaintiff's statutory claim against the defendant, and the Supreme Court recognized the court's authority to hear the state law claim as well, since it was based on the same common nucleus of operative fact as the statutory claim. Here, there is no independent basis of jurisdiction over the city. The mere fact that the Court has jurisdiction over plaintiff's claim against WMATA, and that this claim is based on the same operative facts as plaintiff's claim against the city, is insufficient to confer upon the Court jurisdiction over the city.
Indeed, if plaintiff's argument were accepted, the limitations of diversity jurisdiction would become largely meaningless. If plaintiff, for example, had collided with a citizen of Virginia and a resident of the District of Columbia, it is clear that she could not sue the District of Columbia resident for lack of diversity. But under plaintiff's theory of ancillary jurisdiction, she could sue the Virginia citizen and then maintain suit against the District of Columbia resident as ancillary to the diversity suit. This clearly is not the law. In Owen Equipment & Erection Co. v. Kroger, 437 U.S. 365, 57 L. Ed. 2d 274, 98 S. Ct. 2396 (1978), the Supreme Court emphatically rejected the notion that a finding that non-federal and federal claims derived from a common nucleus of fact was by itself sufficient to warrant the exercise of federal jurisdiction over the non-federal claim. Id. 374-75. The Court stated that "diversity jurisdiction is not to be available when any plaintiff is a citizen of the same State as any defendant," noting that in the case before it, "respondent could not originally have brought suit in federal court naming [the appellants] as codefendants, since citizens of Iowa would have been on both sides of the litigation." Id. at 374. So too, here, plaintiff is attempting to sue two parties, one of whom is not a diverse citizen under the diversity statute. Owen Equipment makes clear that this Court may not entertain such a suit against the non-diverse party.
In essence, plaintiff has advanced a "pendent party" theory of jurisdiction. Whatever the merits, or lack thereof, of this theory generally, see Wright, Law of Federal Courts 142-43 & n.36 (1983), it is not applicable here. In Aldinger v. Howard, 427 U.S. 1, 49 L. Ed. 2d 276, 96 S. Ct. 2413 (1976), the Supreme Court considered whether a plaintiff who had brought a federal civil rights claim against county officials could also bring a state law claim against the county itself. There was no independent basis of jurisdiction over the county, as it was not diverse from plaintiff and fell outside the reach of the Civil Rights Act of 1871, as that Act was then interpreted. Refusing to formulate a general jurisdictional rule, the Court looked to the statute that conferred jurisdiction over the main action to see if Congress had intended to confer jurisdiction over pendent parties involved in the common nucleus of operative facts but not otherwise within the federal court's jurisdiction. The Court concluded Congress had no such intent when it passed the Civil Rights Act, and indeed, had intended to exclude counties from its reach.
In the present case, the Aldinger analysis lends further support to the city's claim that it may not be sued by plaintiff in this Court. Section 1-2439 of the D.C. Code confers jurisdiction on federal district courts, as well as the courts of Maryland and Virginia, to hear cases involving WMATA, a creature of the Washington Metropolitan Regional Transportation Compact, which includes Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia. See D.C. Code § 1-2411 (1981). Were it not for section 1-2439, WMATA could not be sued in federal court by those most likely to come in contact with it--the citizens of Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia--since the authority is an instrumentality of those states and thus would not be diverse from such plaintiffs. Section 1-2439, therefore, is designed to overcome the obstacles to diversity jurisdiction posed by WMATA's unique character. It is thus an exception to the normal requirements of the federal diversity statute, and as such should be narrowly construed. It is inconceivable that Congress intended through section 1-2439, to grant federal courts jurisdiction over the District of Columbia in cases where the city and WMATA are involved in automobile collisions with private parties. If this were Congress' aim, it could simply have altered the federal diversity statute to permit suits against the city directly. Instead, the diversity statute expressly provides that the District of Columbia is to be treated like states for purposes of diversity, and of course states are not "citizens" within the meaning of the statute. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a), (d) (1982). Nothing in section 1-2349, which is addressed to the narrow jurisdictional problems raised by an interstate compact, suggests that it supersedes the provisions of the federal diversity statute. The Court therefore concludes that it lacks jurisdiction over the District of Columbia and must dismiss plaintiff's claim against it.
Having dismissed the District of Columbia from the case, the Court must determine whether the city is an indispensable party within the meaning of Rule 19(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and whether, in equity and good conscience, the action should proceed in its absence. Plaintiff alleges that the city's employee, Officer Wigenton, operated his vehicle negligently, failed to keep a lookout, and ran a stop sign, thereby causing the collision with plaintiff. Plaintiff also alleges that a WMATA employee negligently parked a bus near the intersection blocking Officer Wigenton's view of the stop sign and thereby proximately causing him to collide with plaintiff. Complaint at 2-3. A recitation of the alleged facts makes clear that the case cannot be tried without the city. Its employee is one of two principal alleged tortfeasors in the case, and a judgment rendered in its absence would likely prejudice one or all of the parties. If the case is dismissed, on the other hand, plaintiff may file suit in the District of Columbia Superior Court where jurisdiction is proper for all parties. Thus it is clear plaintiff has an adequate remedy if her suit is dismissed.
For all the foregoing reasons, the case is hereby dismissed.
SO ORDERED this 29th day of October, 1985.
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