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Bradley v. Arwood

United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division

December 24, 2014

SONYA BRADLEY, Plaintiff,
v.
STEVE ARWOOD, et al., Defendants.

ORDER DENYING DEFENDANTS' MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION [#16]

GERSHWIN A. DRAIN, District Judge.

I. INTRODUCTION

Plaintiff commenced this action on June 12, 2014, alleging that Defendants violated the Civil Rights Act of 1871, 42 U.S.C. § 1983; Title VII of the Civil rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e et seq. ;[1] the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, U.S. CONST. amend. I; the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution, U.S. CONST. amend. XIV; the Michigan Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) of 1976, MCL 37.2101 et seq. ; and the Equal Pay Act of 1963, 28 U.S.C. §§ 201 et seq.

On October 20, 2014 this Court dismissed all but two of Plaintiff's claims: Counts VI and XI of Plaintiff's Amended Complaint alleging the creation of a hostile work environment by Defendants Susan Przekop-Shaw ("Przekop-Shaw") and Peter Kotula ("Kotula"). See Bradley v. Arwood, No. 14-cv-12303, 2014 WL 5350833 (E.D. Mich. Oct. 20, 2014). Presently before the Court is Defendants' Motion for Reconsideration with respect to the two remaining Counts. See Dkt. No. 16. Plaintiff filed a Response to the Motion for Reconsideration on December 10, 2014. See Dkt. No. 20. The Court has had an opportunity to thoroughly examine this matter. For the following reasons, the Court will DENY Defendants' Motion for Reconsideration.

II. BACKGROUND

In this Court's October 20, 2014 Opinion and Order, the Court dismissed Plaintiffs Section 1983 Discrimination and Retaliation claims finding that Plaintiff failed to demonstrate that the actions by Defendants were racially premised. See Bradley, 2014 WL 5350833, at *8. However, with respect to Plaintiff's claims for a hostile work environment, the Court found that "given the totality of the circumstances, " the "facts presented by Plaintiff show more than belittling statements, ' and appear to be extensive and pervasive enough to survive Defendant's Motion to Dismiss." Id. at *16.

The Court emphasized that it must take Plaintiff's factual allegations in the Complaint as true. The Court found that, standing alone, the alleged actions of the Defendant would not constitute an adverse employment action. However, given the totality of the circumstances the Court found that it was "presented with a series of events [that]... could make up a work environment [] permeated with discriminatory intimidation, ridicule, and insult that is sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the conditions of the victim's employment and create an abusive working environment.'" Id. at *17 (quoting Harris v. Forklift Systems, Inc., 510 U.S. 17, 21, 114 S.Ct. 367, 126 L.Ed.2d 295 (1993)).

III. LAW & ANALYSIS

A. Standard of Review

Motions for Reconsideration are governed by Local Rule 7.1(g)(3) of the Local Rules of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, which provides:

[M]otions for rehearing or reconsideration which merely present the same issues ruled upon by the court, either expressly or by reasonable implication, shall not be granted. The movant shall not only demonstrate a palpable defect by which the court and the parties have been misled but also show that a different disposition of the case must result from a correction thereof.

E.D. Mich. L.R. 7.1(g)(3). "A palpable defect' is a defect that is obvious, clear, unmistakable, manifest, or plain.'" United States v. Lockett, 328 F.Supp.2d 682, 684 (E.D. Mich. 2004) (quoting United States v. Cican, 156 F.Supp.2d 661, 668 (E.D. Mich. 2001)).

B. Legal Analysis

Defendants contend that this Court "made a fundamental error of law in failing to dismiss [Plaintiff's] claims because they amounted to no more than conclusory allegations-none of which were based on race or gender." Dkt. No. 16 at 2. Specifically, Defendants argue that this Court did not properly evaluate the third requirement for ...


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