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Polsby v. Thompson

March 24, 2002

M. MAUREEN POLSBY, PLAINTIFF,
v.
TOMMY G. THOMPSON, SECRETARY, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Ricardo M. Urbina United States District Judge

Document Nos. 8, 13, 15

MEMORANDUM OPINION

GRANTING THE DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS; DENYING THE PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR LEAVE TO FILE A SECOND AMENDED COMPLAINT

I. INTRODUCTION

This matter comes before the court upon the defendant's renewed motion to dismiss and the pro se plaintiff's opposed motion for leave to file a second amended complaint. The plaintiff, M. Maureen Polsby, M.D., brings this action against Tommy G. Thompson in his official capacity as the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services ("the defendant" or "HHS"), claiming post-employment retaliation and discrimination based on her previous assertion of sex discrimination against the defendant under Title VII. The defendant moves the court to dismiss the plaintiff's case because it is barred by res judicata due to the plaintiff's earlier cases and because this court does not have venue to consider the claims. The defendant also opposes the plaintiff's motion for leave to amend her complaint, arguing that the amendment is futile. For the reasons that follow, the court grants the defendant's renewed motion to dismiss and denies the plaintiff's motion for leave to file a second amended complaint.

II. BACKGROUND

A. Polsby I

The plaintiff originated her line of cases filed in federal district courts in 1988 with a complaint against HHS (hereinafter "Polsby I") alleging employment discrimination and acts of reprisal in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e. See Polsby I Mem. Op. dated Apr. 20, 1995 at 2 n.2 (citing Civ. No. 88-2344 (D. Md.) (Chasonow, J.)). Subsequently, the plaintiff filed two additional civil actions against HHS, alleging substantively similar matters of discrimination and reprisal. See id. (citing Civ. No. 93-857 (D. Md.) (Chasonow, J.) and Civ. No. 94-3078 (D. Md.) (Chasonow, J.)). United District Judge Chasanow consolidated the plaintiff's complaints and adjudicated all the pending claims in a trial ending in March 1996. See Polsby v. Shalala, 925 F. Supp. 379, 382 (D. Md. 1996) (final ruling in Polsby I). In Polsby I, Judge Chasanow granted the plaintiff leave to file seven supplemental documents: three supplements to the complaints, three supplements to the oppositions to defendant's motions to dismiss, and one surreply in support of the opposition. See Polsby I Mem. Op. dated Apr. 20, 1995 at 2 n.2 (granting the plaintiff's motion for partial summary judgment). After the trial in March 1996, Judge Chasanow ruled for the defendant, determining that there had been no gender discrimination. See Polsby, 925 F. Supp. at 396.

B. Polsby II

After the Polsby I trial concluded, the plaintiff filed a complaint (hereinafter "Polsby II") in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, alleging a conspiracy among members of the federal government to pre-arrange an adverse outcome of Dr. Polsby's original employment-discrimination case. See Polsby II Am. Compl. at 2.

The complaint alleged many of the same facts as those alleged in Polsby I.*fn1 See id.; Polsby, 925 F. Supp. at 379. United States District Judge Kennedy granted the plaintiff leave to amend her complaint three times in Polsby II. See Docket for Polsby v. Milkulski, Civ. No. 97-0611 (D.D.C.) (Kennedy, J.). In Polsby II, because the plaintiff "alleged no facts, reason, or motive to support her conspiracy theories," she failed to state a claim on which relief could be granted. See Polsby II Mem. Op. dated July 12, 1999 at 3, 7; FED. R. CIV. P. 12(b)(6). Judge Kennedy also determined that Dr. Polsbydid not have standing under Article III of the Constitution. See Polsby II Mem. Op. dated July 12, 1999 at 4. Thus, Judge Kennedy granted the federal defendants' motion to dismiss Dr. Polsby's complaint. See Polsby II Order dated July 12, 1999 at 1.

C. The Pending Case

Dr. Polsby initiated the present case by filing yet another complaint in federal district court on February 12, 2001. In the instant matter, the court has already granted one motion by the plaintiff for leave to amend her complaint, filed in response to the defendants' motion to dismiss. See Order dated Nov. 8, 2001 at 1. In response, the defendant filed a renewed motion to dismiss arguing res judicata and lack of venue, which Dr. Polsby opposes. The plaintiff seeks leave to file a second amended complaint, and the defendant opposes this motion because the defendant views the amendment as futile. On March 19, 2002, the court ordered the defendant to ...


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