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Gordon v. United States Capitol Police

United States District Court, District of Columbia

February 10, 2013

Judy GORDON, Plaintiff
v.
UNITED STATES CAPITOL POLICE, Defendant.

Page 113

Gregory K. McGillivary, Sara Lyn Faulman, Woodley & McGillivary, Washington, DC, for Plaintiff.

Frederick Michael Herrera, United States Capitol Police, Washington, DC, for Defendant.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

RICHARD J. LEON, District Judge.

Plaintiff Judy Gordon alleges that her employer, defendant United States Capitol Police, interfered with her rights and committed retaliation as prohibited under the

Page 114

Family and Medical Leave Act (" FMLA" ), 29 U.S.C. §§ 2601 et seq. [1] Defendant has moved to dismiss the complaint for failure to state a claim of either interference or retaliation. Upon consideration of the parties' pleadings and the relevant law, defendant's Motion to Dismiss is GRANTED.

BACKGROUND

Plaintiff works as a uniform police officer during the overnight shift. Compl. ¶¶ 7-8 [Dkt. # 1]. On May 6, 2011, plaintiff submitted a request to defendant's Office of Human Resources for a bank of FMLA leave to be used at future, unspecified dates. Id. ¶¶ 11-12. In the request, plaintiff stated that she experienced intermittent depression due to her husband's suicide in October 2010. Id. ¶ 9, 13. Plaintiff's FMLA request was approved with 240 hours of leave on May 20, 2011. Id. ¶ 14. Two months later, plaintiff said she learned through a police captain that the police inspector was " mad" that FMLA requests were being granted without his knowledge; the captain said that the inspector vowed to " find a problem with her FMLA request." Id. ¶¶ 29-31.

On July 20, 2011, plaintiff was informed that, due to the same facts underlying her FMLA leave request, her police powers would be revoked pending a fitness for duty exam (" FFDE" ). Id. ¶¶ 18-19. Instead of following its typical practice of scheduling duty status conferences one business day following the revocation of police powers, defendant scheduled plaintiff's conference three business days after her revocation. Id. ¶¶ 43-44. Plaintiff was temporarily reassigned to a light duty administrative position during her regular tour of duty while awaiting her FFDE. Id. ¶¶ 22-34. In this administrative position, plaintiff was unable to work two days of overtime she had previously scheduled. Id. ¶ 25.

As part of her FFDE, plaintiff was required to submit medical information and meet with a doctor to complete a medical exam. Id. ¶¶ 32-42. The medical exam included more than 900 written questions and an interview. Id. ¶ 47. The doctor concluded that plaintiff was fit for duty, and plaintiff's police powers were reinstated on July 26, 2011. Id. ¶¶ 48-49.[2]

On October 16, 2011, plaintiff learned that she was scheduled to attend an active shooter training session during daytime hours on October 18-20, 2011. Id. ¶¶ 53. Due to the upcoming anniversary of her husband's death, the stress from her sister's recent death, and a scheduled appointment with her therapist, plaintiff requested use of her FMLA leave to miss the scheduled training. Id. ¶¶ 54-56. Plaintiff's supervisor allegedly was irate that plaintiff would miss the training and demanded a doctor's note to justify the leave request. Id. ¶¶ 58-59. After initially " refus[ing]" to approve plaintiff's FMLA request, he eventually granted her request. Id. ¶ 58, 61.

After unsuccessful mediation, plaintiff received a notice of the end of mediation on February 1, 2012. Id. ¶ 1. She filed the ...


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