United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
A. ROSS, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
an African-American man, seeks leave to proceed in forma
pauperis in this civil action under Title VII of the Civil
Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e,
et seq., for employment discrimination on the basis
of race and religion. Based on plaintiff's financial
affidavit, the motion is granted. For the following reasons,
the Court will order process to issue on defendant Kolb
Grading, LLC, and will dismiss without prejudice
plaintiff's claims against defendants IUOE Local 513,
ABNA Engineering, and Environmental Operations, Inc.
28 U.S.C. § 1915(e), the Court is required to dismiss a
complaint filed in forma pauperis if it is frivolous,
malicious, or fails to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted. To state a claim for relief, a complaint must plead
more than “legal conclusions” and
“[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of
action [that are] supported by mere conclusory
statements.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662,
678 (2009). A plaintiff must demonstrate a plausible claim
for relief, which is more than a “mere possibility of
misconduct.” Id. at 679. “A claim has
facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content
that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that
the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.”
Id. at 678. Determining whether a complaint states a
plausible claim for relief is a context-specific task that
requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial
experience and common sense. Id. at 679.
reviewing a complaint under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e), the
Court accepts the well-pled facts as true. Furthermore, the
Court liberally construes the allegations.
to his complaint and his EEOC charge of discrimination,
plaintiff worked for defendant Kolb Grading, LLC
(“Kolb”) from September 18, 2017 to November 22,
2017, removing dirt from a job site located at the corner of
Cass and Jefferson in the City of St. Louis. Plaintiff drove
a tractor trailer to haul concrete slabs and also drove a
water truck from which he would spray water to keep the dust
on the jobsite down.
alleges employment discrimination based on race and religion,
and alleges he was fired for threatening to report his
complaints to the EEOC. He alleges black employees at Kolb
were treated differently from their white counterparts. For
example, loads of dirt were dropped extra hard in black
employees' trucks, but not in white employees, causing
black employees' trucks to bounce dangerously. Plaintiff
states black employees were not given safety equipment, while
white employees were. Plaintiff states he was subjected to
racial slurs, verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, racial
jokes, sexually-explicit conversations, called a
“Christian hypocrite, ” not paid overtime, and
forced to work through lunch breaks. For relief, plaintiff
wants to be reinstated with seniority and back pay, plus lost
wages of $6, 000.00.
establish a prima facie case of discrimination under Title
VII, a plaintiff must show: 1) that he or she is a member of
a protected class, (2) that he or she was meeting the
employer's legitimate job expectations, (3) that he or
she suffered an adverse employment action, and (4) that
similarly situated employees outside the protected class were
treated differently. E.g., Tolen v.
Ashcroft, 377 F.3d 879 (8th Cir. 2004). Having carefully
reviewed and liberally construed plaintiff's complaint,
the Court finds plaintiff has stated a plausible claim
against defendant Kolb, under the Title VII, and will order
the Clerk to issue process on the complaint.
Court will dismiss defendants IUOE Local 513, ABNA
Engineering, and Environmental Operations, Inc. Plaintiff
makes no allegations against these entities. He does not
allege he was employed by these defendants, which is required
to state a claim for employment discrimination under Title
VII. Nor does he allege these defendants participated in any
discriminatory conduct. As a result, defendants IUOE Local
513, ABNA Engineering, and Environmental Operations, Inc.
will be dismissed.
plaintiff has filed a motion for appointment of counsel,
which the Court will deny at this time. There is no
constitutional or statutory right to appointed counsel in
civil cases. Nelson v. Redfield Lithograph Printing,
728 F.2d 1003, 1004 (8th Cir. 1984). In determining whether
to appoint counsel, the Court considers several factors,
including (1) whether the plaintiff has presented
non-frivolous allegations supporting his or her prayer for
relief; (2) whether the plaintiff will substantially benefit
from the appointment of counsel; (3) whether there is a need
to further investigate and present the facts related to the
plaintiff's allegations; and (4) whether the factual and
legal issues presented by the action are complex. See
Johnson v. Williams, 788 F.2d 1319, 1322-23 (8th Cir.
1986); Nelson, 728 F.2d at 1005.
has presented non-frivolous allegations in his complaint.
However, he has demonstrated, at this point, that he can
adequately present his claims to the Court. Additionally,
neither the factual nor the legal issues in this case are
complex. The Court will entertain future motions for
appointment of counsel as the case progresses.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that plaintiffs motion
to proceed in forma pauperis is GRANTED.
[ECF No. 2]
IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerk of Court shall
issue process or cause process to issue on plaintiffs