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SPARROW v. REYNOLDS

October 16, 1986

Cleveland B. Sparrow, Sr., Plaintiff,
v.
William Reynolds, et al., Defendants



The opinion of the court was delivered by: RICHEY

 The parties have several motions before this Court. Defendant has moved to dismiss the complaint, for sanctions against plaintiff, and for a protective order. Plaintiff has moved for summary judgment, to join a variety of additional defendants, and to strike all pleadings filed by Robert Eaton, Assistant United States Attorney and counsel to defendants in this case. In addition, the Court has before it the report and recommendation of the United States Magistrate, who took testimony on the Court's subject matter jurisdiction over this action.

 The Court will deny plaintiff's motions for summary judgment and will also deny plaintiff's motion to strike the Eaton pleadings. The Court will accept the Magistrate's recommendation in part but will grant defendants' motion to dismiss this complaint. The Court will dismiss plaintiff's motion to join new defendants as moot. The Court will also grant defendants' motion for sanctions and accordingly will enter an order to prevent plaintiff from filing further meritless suits in federal court. Under the terms of that order, plaintiff will have to show just cause and obtain prior approval to file a complaint from a judge who first shall have been made familiar with plaintiff's past history of litigation in this Court.

 BACKGROUND

 On February 25, 1977, the Department of the Navy terminated plaintiff's employment as a Computer Systems Analyst, GS-9. Sparrow v. Weinberger, Civil Action No. 83-2219, 1 (D.D.C. 1984) (memorandum opinion). Before the effective date of that termination, plaintiff filed a formal complaint of discrimination with the Department of the Navy. Those allegations were initially rejected. The Office of Review and Appeals of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission discovered procedural flaws in the processing of plaintiff's complaint and ordered him reinstated while the merits of his complaint were investigated. Id. at 2.

 In November, 1982, plaintiff and the Department of the Navy settled plaintiff's discrimination claim for, inter alia, $92,300. Defendants' Motion to Dismiss, Exhibit 2 (Settlement Agreement and Release, Nov. 26, 1982). Under the terms of that settlement, plaintiff agreed to withdraw his allegations of discrimination and reprisal. He further agreed "not to institute any action or proceeding in the future based upon allegations of discrimination and/or reprisal arising out of his employment with the Navy . . .". Id.

 Plaintiff alleges in the instant case that he has reapplied for employment in the Department of the Navy. The thrust of plaintiff's complaint is that defendants are not processing his applications for employment because of race discrimination in violation of Title VII, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq. Plaintiff also claims that the Department of the Navy has violated the 1982 Settlement Agreement.

 Before the Court turns to the pending motions, it must determine whether plaintiff properly exhausted his administrative remedies. If not, the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over this action and may not consider plaintiff's claims. Brown v. General Services Administration, 425 U.S. 820, 832-35, 48 L. Ed. 2d 402, 96 S. Ct. 1961 (1976).

 THIS COURT HAS SUBJECT MATTER JURISDICTION OVER PLAINTIFF'S ACTION.

 On December 20, 1985, this Court referred this action to the United States Magistrate, pursuant to then-Local Rule 3-8, to determine, inter alia, whether plaintiff had received a right-to-sue letter and whether such a letter was necessary for this plaintiff to bring suit. On February 19, 1986, Magistrate Patrick J. Attridge found that plaintiff's complaint could properly be characterized as charging a violation of the 1982 settlement agreement. The Magistrate also found that plaintiff brought this suit more than 180 days after lodging a complaint to which the EEOC never responded. Under either theory, the Magistrate found that this Court had subject matter jurisdiction to hear this suit. Magistrate's Report and Recommendations 4.

 Defendants argue that the Magistrate's Report does not employ the legal standard that governs federal employee allegations of Title VII violations. If plaintiff's complaint solely alleged discrimination, defendants would be correct. The regulations governing Title VII mandate that federal employees lodge a discrimination complaint with an agency Equal Employment Opportunity officer within thirty days of the allegedly discriminatory conduct. If not, the complainant may not be heard by any court. 29 C.F.R. § 1613.213(a) (1984); Brown v. General Services Administration, 425 U.S. 820, 825, 832, 48 L. Ed. 2d 402, 96 S. Ct. 1961 (1976) (administrative filing precondition to suit).

 Because the record contains no evidence that plaintiff sought administrative remedy, this Court cannot accept the Magistrate's finding that plaintiff has complied with the regulations. This, however, is not fatal to plaintiff's case. A pro se litigant, even one as experienced as plaintiff, is entitled to have his complaint construed most liberally. Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520-21, 30 L. Ed. 2d 652, 92 S. Ct. 594. While plaintiff concentrates on alleged acts of discrimination, he notes that the Navy has breached the 1982 Settlement Agreement. As such, the Court agrees with the United States Magistrate that plaintiff may be asserting that defendants have breached the 1982 settlement agreement. Such a reading sustains the Court's jurisdiction over this action. See, e.g., American Security Vanlines, Inc. v. Gallagher, 251 U.S. App. D.C. 198, 782 F.2d 1056, 1060 (D.C. Cir. 1986) (per curiam) (quoting American Security Vanlines, Inc. v. Gallagher, No. 83-0074, Gasch, J.).

 Thus, under the liberal standard that governs pro se complaints, this Court finds that it has jurisdiction over plaintiff's suit.

 PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO STRIKE PLEADINGS FILED BY ASSISTANT UNITED STATES ATTORNEY EATON IS GROUNDLESS AND MUST BE DENIED.

 Plaintiff has charged Robert Eaton, Assistant United States Attorney and counsel for defendants in this case, with conflict of interest and obstruction of justice and has moved to strike all pleadings filed by attorney Eaton from the ...


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