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Lopes v. Jetsetdc, LLC

United States District Court, D. Columbia.

October 8, 2014

ANTHONY LOPES, Plaintiff,
v.
JETSETDC, LLC, et al., Defendants

For ANTHONY LOPES, Plaintiff: Spencer Michael Hecht, HECHT & ASSOCIATES, Silver Spring, MD.

For JETSETDC, LLC, MARK SPAIN, COREY LAWRENCE MOXEY, also known as DOMINIQUE MOXEY, Defendants: Charles C. Iweanoge, LEAD ATTORNEY, THE IWEANOGES' FIRM, PC, Washington, DC.

For INNER CIRCLE 1420, LLC, DAVID MCLEOD, Defendants: Matthew August LeFande, LEAD ATTORNEY, LAW OFFICES OF MATTHEW AUGUST LEFANDE, Arlington, VA.

Page 556

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Royce C. Lamberth, United States District Judge.

Before the Court are a number of subject matter jurisdiction-related motions. Included are the defendants David McLeod and Inner Circle, LLC's second motion to dismiss [40] (" McLeod motion to dismiss" ) and the defendants JetSetDC, LLC, Corey Moxey, and Mark Spain's (collectively, " JetSetDC defendants" ) second motion to dismiss [41] (" JetSetDC motion to dismiss" ), the plaintiff's opposition [43], and the defendants McLeod and Inner Circle's reply [44] thereto; the defendants

Page 557

McLeod and Inner Circle's motion to stay the Court's discovery Order regarding the ownership of Lotus Lounge DC [42] (" McLeod motion to stay" ) and the plaintiff's opposition [45] thereto; and the plaintiff's motions for additional discovery [51] relating to McLeod's domicile and to shorten the time for McLeod to respond to the discovery motion [52]. Upon consideration of the parties' briefings on these various motions, the applicable law, and the entire record herein, the Court will GRANT the McLeod motion to dismiss [40], GRANT the JetSetDC motion to dismiss [41], GRANT the McLeod motion to stay [42] nunc pro tunc, and DENY the plaintiff's motions for additional discovery [51] and to shorten the time to respond [52] nunc pro tunc.

I. BACKGROUND

Given that the background of this case has been provided in prior Memorandum Opinions issued in this case, e.g. Lopes v. JetSetDC, LLC, 994 F.Supp.2d 126, 129-130 (D.D.C. 2014), ECF No. 36, the Court will only recite those alleged facts that are most relevant to the jurisdictional questions at hand. According to the complaint, plaintiff Anthony Lopes " is the owner/operator of an [automated teller machine ('ATM')] business, and one of his own ATMs is located within [the] Lotus Lounge" nightclub in Washington, D.C. Second Am. Compl. ¶ 13, ECF No. 39. While visiting Lotus Lounge to service its ATM on or about December 27, 2012, the plaintiff alleges that defendant Jameka Ivy, who was working as a hostess at Lotus Lounge, verbally abused and physically attacked him, causing injuries. Id. ¶ ¶ 14-16.

The plaintiff, a citizen of Virginia, id. ¶ 1, brings suit in this federal Court against Ivy, Lotus Lounge, and five other purported defendants: Inner Circle, McLeod, JetSetDC, Moxey, and Spain. The complaint alleges that Inner Circle " owns and operates, or is trading as Lotus Lounge," id. ¶ 7, and that McLeod " is an owner and operator of Lotus Lounge and/or Inner Circle," id. ¶ 8. The plaintiff asserts that McLeod is a citizen of Maryland. Id. The complaint then pleads that JetSetDC " has a business relationship with Lotus Lounge[] [and] Inner Circle, [] and is thoroughly involved in the management, staffing, and events at Lotus Lounge." Id. ¶ 9. The plaintiff further alleges that Moxey and Spain " are the owners and operators of JetSet, and are alter egos of this corporation." Id. ¶ 4. The plaintiff claims that Moxey is a citizen of Washington, D.C., and that Spain is a citizen of Maryland. Id. ¶ ¶ 5, 6. Finally, the complaint alleges that that defendant Ivy was employed by " JetSet, Inner Circle, Lotus Lounge, and David McLeod, Spain and Moxey . . . as a hostess and as security personnel at Lotus Lounge. Additionally, she is [d]efendant Moxey's niece." Id. ¶ 10.[1] Unlike his contention that Inner Circle and JetSetDC are LLCs, the plaintiff does not plead a specific entity type for Lotus Lounge. See id. ¶ 3.

On February 26, 2014, the Court filed two Memorandum Opinions, ECF Nos. 36, 38, denying the defendants' respective motions to dismiss, ECF Nos. 16, 26, on the basis of the plaintiff's pleadings, and granted the plaintiff's motion for leave to file its Second Amended Complaint, see ECF No. 39. Regarding Lotus Lounge's status as a defendant, the Court noted that it would reserve judgment on the issue of

Page 558

" whether a trade name or alias is a proper party to a lawsuit under District of Columbia law." 994 F.Supp.2d at 135. On March 12, defendants McLeod and Inner Circle filed a second motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction on diversity grounds, claiming that evidence clearly demonstrates that McLeod was a citizen of Virginia at all times relevant to this case. ECF No. 40. That same day, the JetSetDC defendants filed a second motion to dismiss that simply " request[ed] to adopt [the McLeod motion to dismiss] since the said motion form [sic] the basis of [the JetSetDC] motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction." ECF No. 41. In April, the Court issued an Order, ECF No. 46, and subsequent Memorandum Opinion, ECF No. 47, granting the plaintiff " limited discovery on the issue of defendant David McLeod's state of domicile" and setting an evidentiary hearing. See 4 F.Supp.3d 238, ...


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