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Capnord v. Fred's

United States District Court, N.D. Mississippi, Greenville Division

October 5, 2017

SAMUEL LYDELL CAPNORD PLAINTIFF
v.
FRED'S DEFENDANT

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          DEBRA M. BROWN, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         This civil rights action is before the Court on Fred's Stores of Tennessee, Inc.'s motion to dismiss. Doc. #60.

         I

         Procedural History

         On November 16, 2015, Samuel Lydell Capnord filed a pro se complaint in this Court against “Fred's.” Doc. #4. In submitting his complaint, Capnord utilized what appears to be a form complaint for an employment discrimination claim and checked only the Title VII box in categorizing his claims. Id. at 1. However, the complaint itself alleges: “I was a disabled customer. Also, discriminated against[] because of ... Plaintiff's color ... [and] Plaintiff's disability.” Id. at 3. Capnord identified his race as “black (different shade)” and his disability as “use cane for assistance prescribed by doc.” Id. When prompted to recite the specific acts of discrimination, Capnord wrote:

August 26, 2016 assistant manager Yolanda Fletcher yelled at me and me get out of a line when I was only customer. I am a permanently disable person. I had to go in the back of a single foul line on other cashier's register. Then she signal a Caucasian woman approximately mid way or 4th or 5th in line and checked her out. Store Manager Willie Priestly was not professional did not do a thorough investigation.

Id. at 4. As relief, Capnord requests that Defendant be ordered to “compensate monetary damages for pain and suffering.” Id. at 5.

         Fred's answered Capnord's complaint on December 10, 2015. Doc. #8. Following the answer, the parties engaged in approximately eight months of discovery during which Fred's deposed and served discovery on Capnord. Doc. #19; Doc. #33-3.

         On September 8, 2016, Fred's filed a motion to dismiss Capnord's complaint or, in the alternative, for summary judgment. Doc. #33. In its accompanying memorandum, Fred's argued that Capnord is asserting claims for employment discrimination and negligence and that such claims must fail because Capnord was not employed by Fred's and because Fred's was not negligent. Doc. #34 at 4-7.

         On April 26, 2017, the Court entered an order denying Fred's motion on the grounds that Capnord's complaint asserts “claims for disability and race discrimination in public accommodation, ” not claims for employment discrimination or negligence. Doc. #53 at 8-9. Approximately a month later, on May 26, 2017, this Court entered an order allowing Fred's to file a motion addressing the claims remaining in this case and setting a briefing schedule for the motion. Doc. #57. Consistent with the briefing schedule, Fred's filed a motion to dismiss, Doc. #60; Capnord responded to the motion, Doc. #61; and Fred's replied, Doc. #62.

         II

         Relevant Standard

         Fred's motion to dismiss seeks dismissal pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). Doc. #60. In support of the requested dismissal, Fred's relies on two documents attached to the motion-a deposition of Capnord and an affidavit of Yolanda Fletcher.

         As a general matter, where a defendant has filed a 12(b)(6) motion and “submitted matters outside the pleadings without such evidence being excluded by the Court [within ten days], ” the proper course is to treat the 12(b)(6) motion as a motion for summary judgment. McNair v. Mississippi, 43 F.Supp.3d 679, 682 (N.D. Miss. 2014) (citing Washington v. Allstate Ins. Co., 901 F.2d 1281, 1284 (5th Cir. 1990)). More than ten days have passed since Fred's submitted matters outside the pleadings without ...


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