The opinion of the court was delivered by: Ricardo M. Urbina United States District Judge
DISMISSING THE PLAINTIFF'S ADEA TERMINATION CLAIM AND GRANTING THE DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT ON THE REMAINING CLAIMS
This case comes before the court on the defendant's motion for summary judgment. The plaintiff alleges that his former employer, the defendant, unlawfully discriminated against him in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA"), 29 U.S.C. §§ 621 et seq., and the District of Columbia Human Rights Act ("DCHRA"), D.C. Code §§ 2-1401 et seq. The court dismisses the plaintiff's ADEA termination claim because he has failed to exhaust the ADEA's prescribed administrative remedies for that claim. As to the plaintiff's remaining claims, the court grants the defendant's motion for summary judgment because the plaintiff has failed to establish a prima facie case of age discrimination under either the ADEA or the DCHRA.
The plaintiff began working for the defendant as a butcher in 1981. Def.'s Statement of Undisputed Facts ("Def.'s Statement") ¶¶ 1-4; Pl.'s Statement of Disputed Facts ("Pl.'s Statement") ¶ 4. In January 2000, one of the plaintiff's supervisors reported that the plaintiff directed inappropriate and abusive language at another employee. Def.'s Statement ¶ 6; see generally Pl.'s Statement. After this incident, the plaintiff's supervisors warned him that any repeated conduct of this nature could result in his termination. Def.'s Statement ¶ 7; see generally Pl.'s Statement.
A few months later, in April 2000, a supervisor reported that the plaintiff confronted and threatened him after once again directing inappropriate and abusive language at another employee. Def.'s Statement ¶¶ 8-9; see generally Pl.'s Statement. As a result of this second transgression, the defendant suspended the plaintiff for five days and required him to attend and provide documentation of anger-management counseling. Def.'s Statement ¶¶ 10-11; see generally Pl.'s Statement.
Nearly a year later, in March 2001, another supervisor reported that the plaintiff had, yet again, used inappropriate and abusive language in the workplace. Def.'s Statement ¶ 15; see generally Pl.'s Statement. Consequently, the defendant suspended the plaintiff for ten days, again ordering him to attend and document his enrollment in anger-management counseling. Def.'s Statement ¶¶ 16-17; see generally Pl.'s Statement. The plaintiff refused to attend the defendant's prescribed anger-management counseling. Mussad Decl. ¶¶ 6-7 & Attachs. 3-4, 6-7.
Due to his suspensions, on March 22, 2001, the then 58-year-old plaintiff filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"), alleging that the defendant discriminated against him on the basis of his age. Def.'s Statement ¶ 39; Pl.'s Dep. Tr. ("Pl.'s Dep.") Ex. 3. Specifically, he claimed that the defendant had not suspended similarly situated younger employees for comparable conduct. Def.'s Statement ¶ 41; Pl.'s Dep. Ex. 3.
On November 2001, while his EEOC complaint was pending, the plaintiff reported that he injured his back while lifting a box of meat at work. Def.'s Statement ¶ 20; Pl.'s Statement ¶ 4. As a result of his alleged injury, the plaintiff discontinued work, presented the defendant with a doctor's statement restricting his employment activities, and filed for workers' compensation. Def.'s Statement ¶ 22; Pl.'s Statement ¶ 4.
Thereafter, in an effort to verify the legitimacy of the plaintiff's reported injury and inability to work, the workers' compensation insurance provider had the plaintiff submit to an independent medical evaluation and assigned private investigators to conduct surveillance of the plaintiff. Def.'s Statement ¶ 23; see generally Pl.'s Statement. In January 2002, the defendant received a videotape from the insurance provider that contained footage of the plaintiff repeatedly lifting luggage. Def.'s Statement ¶ 24; see generally Pl.'s Statement. The defendant also received a copy of the independent medical evaluation, which determined that the plaintiff's conduct on the videotape was inconsistent with his reported condition and that the plaintiff could work without restriction. Def.'s Statement ¶¶ 25-31; see generally Pl.'s Statement. After reviewing the videotape and the medical evaluation, the defendant's general manager, in conjunction with the recommendation of the defendant's director of human resources, terminated the plaintiff for "misrepresent[ing] his ability to work after allegedly suffering an on-the-job injury." Def.'s Statement ¶¶ 33-34, 37; see generally Pl.'s Statement.
On March 29, 2002, the EEOC issued the plaintiff a "Notice of Right to Sue" at the request of his counsel. Am. Compl. at 2; Pl.'s Dep. Ex. E. On April 24, 2002, the plaintiff initiated this suit against the defendant, alleging that the defendant violated the ADEA by suspending and later terminating the plaintiff on account of his age. Compl. ¶ 2; Am. Compl. at 1-2. On May 12, 2003, pursuant to the parties' stipulation, the plaintiff amended his complaint, adding an unlawful-termination claim under the DCHRA. Am. Compl. at 3-4. After receiving the plaintiff's consent, the defendant late-filed an answer to the amended complaint, advancing, inter alia, the affirmative defense of failure to exhaust administrative remedies with ...