United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
Jill S. Oviatt, Plaintiff,
University of Michigan Regents, et al., Defendants.
STEVEN WHALEN U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE
DISMISSING OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE CLAIM, DENYING
PLAINTIFF'S REQUEST FOR ENTRY OF DEFAULT, DENYING
PLAINTIFF'S MOTIONS FOR SANCTIONS [15, 16], AND DIRECTING
PLAINTIFF TO SHOW CAUSE WHY CASE SHOULD NOT BE DISMISSED FOR
FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM
J. Tarnow Senior United States District Judge
U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Tarnow U.S. Magistrate Judge R.
se Plaintiff Jill S. Oviatt filed a Complaint [Dkt. #1]
on June 7, 2018 against the University of Michigan (“U
of M”) Regents, the former president of U of M Lee C.
Bollinger,  and Associate General Counsel with the U
of M Office of the Vice President and General Counsel Richard
Brandon. That same day, Plaintiff filed a Notice of Service
 in which she claimed to have served
Defendants. One week later, Plaintiff filed a document
labeled “Certified Mail return cards” .
filed an Amended Complaint  on June 18, 2018, as well as
two Notices of Service [9, 10], in which she again claimed to
have served Defendants. As of the date of this Order,
Defendant Bollinger is the only party who has not appeared in
3, 2018, Plaintiff filed an Order for Entry of Default .
That same day, Defendants Richard Brandon and U of M, through
counsel, filed an Objection to Plaintiff's Request for
Entry of Default .
10, 2018, Plaintiff filed two Motions for Sanctions [15, 16],
as well as a document titled “Amnesty Affidavit”
filings are hard to decipher. It appears that Plaintiff
asserts a claim for hostile work environment based on sexual
harassment. She also brings claims for disparate treatment
and obstruction of justice. (Am. Compl. at 2, 5-7).
allegations of a complaint drafted by a pro se
litigant are held to less stringent standards than formal
pleadings drafted by lawyers in the sense that a pro
se complaint will be liberally construed in determining
whether it fails to state a claim upon which relief could be
granted.” Jourdan v. Jabe, 951 F.2d 108, 110
(6th Cir. 1991). That said, “pro se status
does not exempt the plaintiff from the requirement that he
comply with relevant rules of procedural and substantive
law.” Weron v. Cherry, 2008 WL 4614335, at *2
(E.D. Tenn. Oct. 14, 2008). The Court “need not accept
as true legal conclusions or unwarranted factual
inferences.” Montgomery v. Huntington Bank,
346 F.3d 693, 698 (6th Cir. 2003) (quoting Morgan v.
Church's Fried Chicken, 829 F.2d 10, 12 (6th
Cir.1987)). In other words, “the lenient treatment
generally accorded to pro se litigants has limits, ”
and they are “not automatically entitled to take every
case to trial.” Pilgrim v. Littlefield, 92
F.3d 413, 416 (6th Cir. 1996).
reasons discussed below, the Court will dismiss
Plaintiff's obstruction of justice claim. To the extent
Plaintiff requests entry of default, that request is
DENIED. Plaintiff's Motions for
Sanctions [15, 16] are DENIED. Plaintiff is
also directed to SHOW CAUSE why the case
should not be dismissed against Defendants for failure to
state a claim upon which relief can be granted.
Sexual harassment/hostile work environment claim
seems to allege that Brandon's conduct created a hostile
work environment, and that the University knew of and
condoned such conduct. It is unclear whether Plaintiff brings
this claim under Michigan's Elliot Larsen Civil Rights
Act (“ELCRA”) or Title VII, 42 U.S.C. §
2000e, et seq. Accordingly, the Court will examine
Plaintiff's claims under both statutes.
establish a prima facie case of hostile work environment
sexual harassment under ...