United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle
ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO DISMISS
RICARDO S. MARTINEZ CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the Court on Defendants Chin and Lally's
Motion to Dismiss Pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). Dkt.
#52. Defendants bring their Motion arguing that
Plaintiff's claims against them are not plausible on
their face and fail to adequately state a claim upon which
relief can be granted. For the following reasons and because
Plaintiff has failed to respond, the Court grants the Motion.
initiated this action based on ongoing disputes with the
management company of his apartment building that he alleges
are due to his race. Regarding Defendants Chin and Lally,
employees of the City of Seattle, Plaintiff's Complaint
On June 19, 2017, plaintiff filed a complaint with the
Seattle Office of Civil Rights (“SOCR”) and the
Department of Housing and Urban. Plaintiff received an
Acceptance Letter dated June 20, 2017, from the U.S.
Department of Housing and Urban Development informing him
that his complaint was referred by their office to the
Seattle Office for Civil Rights for investigation as required
by the Act [42 U.S.C. 3610(f)]. Plaintiff's interview was
with defendant Chin-Enforcement Manager for the Seattle
Office of Civil Rights. According to the investigatory
information given to defendant Lally-Director for Seattle
Office of Civil Rights, by defendant Chin, there were dates
and years of events wrong. They used apartment 602B to
illustrate; plaintiff applied for apartment 620B. Plaintiff
states that defendant Chin investigation was inadequate and
bias against the plaintiff. On October 26, 2017, defendant
Lally denied plaintiff's claims. Plaintiff filed an
appeal before the Seattle Human Rights Commission Appeals
Committee and was denied on January 18, 2018.
Dkt. #5 at 10 (replicated with errors as it appears in the
complaint must “give the defendant fair notice of what
the . . . claim is and the grounds upon which it rests”
and must include sufficient facts to “state a claim for
relief that is plausible on its face.” Bell Atl.
Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555, 570 (2007)
(alteration in original) (citations omitted).
“Determining whether a complaint states a plausible
claim for relief will . . . be a context-specific task that
requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial
experience and common sense.” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 679 (2009) (citations omitted).
Dismissal “can be based on the lack of a cognizable
legal theory or the absence of sufficient facts alleged under
a cognizable legal theory.” Balistreri v. Pacifica
Police Dep't, 901 F.2d 696, 699 (9th Cir. 1990);
see also Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2). Where the court is
interpreting the “inartful pleadings of pro se
litigants, ” however, the court is to hold the
pleadings to a “less stringent standard than formal
pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Eldridge v.
Block, 832 F.2d 1132, 1137 (9th Cir. 1987); Haines
v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972).
considering a motion pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 12(b)(6), the court accepts all facts alleged in
the complaint as true and makes all inferences in the light
most favorable to the non-moving party. Baker v.
Riverside Cnty. Office of Educ., 584 F.3d 821, 824 (9th
Cir. 2009) (citations omitted). The Court need not accept
“legal conclusion couched as a factual
allegation” and a plaintiff must plead “factual
content that allows the court to draw the reasonable
inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct
alleged.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. “The
plausibility standard is not akin to a probability
requirement, but it asks for more than a sheer possibility
that a defendant has acted unlawfully. . . . Where a
complaint pleads facts that are merely consistent with a
defendant's liability, it stops short of the line between
possibility and plausibility of entitlement to relief.”
Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678 (citing Twombly, 550
U.S. at 556, 557). Absent facial plausibility, a
plaintiff's claims must be dismissed.
Dismissal is Appropriate
fails to adequately state a claim against Defendants Chin and
Lally. First, Plaintiff does not point to any legal basis
demonstrating that he can maintain a claim against Defendants
for inadequate investigation of his complaint or unadorned
bias. Second, Plaintiff does not establish that he was
treated differently than any other individual. Third, even if
Plaintiff was treated differently, he alleges nothing to
demonstrate that the disparate treatment was because of a
protected classification. Fourth, Plaintiff does not indicate
how Defendants' inadequate investigation of his complaint
or the Defendants' bias against him related to any harm
likewise recount various additional reasons that
Plaintiff's claims fail. Defendants point out that the
Fair Housing Act does not provide a cause of action related
to investigations of complaints by municipalities. Dkt. #52
at 3-4. Defendants further point out that the
“technical deficiencies” alleged do not give rise
to negligence or constitutional claims. Id. at 4-5.
Further, Defendants point out that the Seattle Municipal Code
expressly does not provide Plaintiff a cause of action in
this situation. Id. at 5-6. Lastly, Defendants note
the total dearth of ...