United States District Court, District of Columbia
Charles H. Rogers, Plaintiff,
Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, and Local 689, Amalgamated Transit Union, Defendants.
CHARLES H. ROGERS, JR., Plaintiff, represented by John Edward
Williams, LAW OFFICES OF JOHN E. WILLIAMS, Esq..
AMALGAMATED TRANSIT UNION LOCAL 689, Defendant, represented
by Douglas Taylor, GROMFINE, TAYLOR AND TYLER & Brian
Connolly, GROMFINE, TAYLOR AND TYLER, pro hac vice.
Defendant, represented by Gerard Joseph Stief, WASHINGTON
METROPOLITAN AREA TRANSIT AUTHORITY.
P. MEHTA, District Judge.
case is before the court on Defendant Washington Metropolitan
Area Transit Authority's ("WMATA") and
Defendant Local 689, Amalgamated Transit Union's
("Local 689") Motions for Summary Judgment.
See ECF Nos. 41, 42. As required by Local Civil Rule
7(h)(1), with their Motions for Summary Judgment, both
Defendants submitted statements of material facts as to which
they assert there is no dispute. See ECF Nos. 41,
42-4. Plaintiff, however, did not file an Opposition to
either Motion. Accordingly, as permitted by Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 56(e) and the law of this Circuit, see
Grimes v. District of Columbia, 794 F.3d 83, 92
(D.C. Cir. 2015), the court will treat the facts presented by
Defendants as conceded. Still, despite treating these facts
as conceded, the court must determine whether Defendants have
carried their burden to warrant granting summary judgment in
their favor. See id. at 97 (Griffith, J.,
concurring). The court will turn to that inquiry, after first
briefly recounting the uncontested facts.
Charles H. Rogers, Jr., brought this action alleging that (1)
he was improperly terminated from his position as a bus
driver at WMATA in violation of the applicable Collective
Bargaining Agreement ("CBA"), and (2) denied fair
representation by his union, Local 689, during subsequent
arbitration proceedings in which he challenged his
termination. See Compl., ECF No. 1, Â¶Â¶ 42-45.
hired Plaintiff as a bus driver in March 2010. Def.'s
Mot. for Summ. J., ECF No. 42 [hereinafter Def. WMATA's
Mot.], Def. WMATA's Stmt. of Mat. Facts, Ex. 4, ECF No.
42-4 [hereinafter Def. WMATA's Stmt.], Â¶ 1. In August
2010, Plaintiff was arrested in Washington, D.C., for sexual
solicitation. Id. Â¶ 2. Almost three years later, in
April 2013, WMATA received an anonymous tip that Plaintiff
was driving with a suspended driver's license. Def.
WMATA's Mot., Ex. 5, Aff. of Jewel Bell, ECF No. 42-5,
Memo. of Dismissal [hereinafter Dismissal Memo.], at 3. A
subsequent investigation revealed that the anonymous tip was
accurate, and that while Plaintiff held a valid District of
Columbia commercial driver's license ("CDL"),
he had (1) a suspended CDL in Prince George's County,
Maryland, (2) seven open motor vehicle cases, and (3) three
upcoming trial dates relating to those cases. Id.
Plaintiff admitted that he had not reported at least some of
these incidents to WMATA, as he was required to do.
Id. at 4. WMATA then terminated Plaintiff's
employment in May 2013 for, among other reasons,
"deliberately operating on a suspended license, failing
to report these incidents to WMATA Management, placing
yourself, our passengers and the general public in potential
harm, while continuing to defraud WMATA." Id.
filed a grievance regarding his termination on May 10, 2013.
Def. WMATA's Mot., Ex. 2, Arbitration Board Decision, ECF
No. 42-2 [hereinafter Board Decision], at 6. His grievance
proceeded to arbitration. On March 4, 2014, the Arbitration
Board issued its decision, finding that WMATA had
"produced persuasive evidence that [Plaintiff], as
charged, committed two distinct dischargeable offenses, and
there is insufficient basis on this record to disturb
[WMATA's] determination to dismiss [Plaintiff]."
Id. at 12.
August 28, 2014, Plaintiff filed a complaint in D.C. Superior
Court. See Compl., ECF No. 1-4. The case was removed
to this court on October 2, 2014, see Notice of
Removal, ECF No. 1. Defendants filed their Motions for
Summary Judgment on June 29, 2016. See ECF Nos.
Rule of Civil Procedure 56 provides that a court should grant
summary judgment if "there is no genuine dispute as to
any material fact and [the moving party] is entitled to
judgment as a matter of law." Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A
material fact is one that is capable of affecting the outcome
of litigation. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477
U.S. 242, 248 (1986).
"mandates the entry of summary judgment, after adequate
time for discovery and upon motion, against a party who fails
to make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an
element essential to that party's case... on which that
party will bear the burden of proof at trial."
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett,477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986).
The party moving for summary judgment "bears the initial
responsibility of informing the district court of the basis
for its motion" and identifying those portions of the
record that it believes "demonstrate the absence of a
genuine issue of material fact." Id. at 323. If
the non-moving party does not oppose summary judgment, then
the facts put forward by the moving party may be treated as