United States District Court, W.D. Missouri, Central Division
MICHELLE CAMPBELL, Individually, and as surviving spouse of James Richard Campbell, Jr., deceased Plaintiff,
LAKE REGIONAL MEDICAL MANAGEMENT, INC., d/b/a Lake Regional Medical Urgent Care - Eldon, RENE REVELLE, FNP, KANDI WILLIAMS, LPN, KANDI PADGETT, LPN, JOHN AND JANE DOES #1-10, MICHAEL J. VIERRA, MD, LAKE REGIONAL HEALTH SYSTEM and LAKE REGIONAL ALLIED SERVICES Defendants.
NANETTE K. LAUGHREY United States District Judge
the Court is the motion by Defendant Dr. Michael J. Vierra to
dismiss, or, in the alternative, for more definite statement,
Doc. 14, and the motion by Defendants Lake Regional Medical
Management, Inc., Rene Revell, Kandi Williams, Kandi Padgett,
Lake Regional Health System, and Lake Regional Allied
Services (the “Lake Regional Defendants”) for
more definite statement, Doc. 11. For the following reasons,
the motion to dismiss and motions for more definite statement
are denied. The request by Plaintiff Michelle Campbell for
ninety days to conduct discovery prior to filing her First
Amended Complaint, Doc. 17, Doc. 18, is denied as moot.
24, 2016, Mr. James Richard Campbell, Jr., allegedly visited
the Lake Regional Medical Urgent Care - Eldon complaining of
shortness of breath and dizziness. According to the
complaint, Mr. Campbell was diagnosed with bronchitis,
treated, and sent home. Shortly thereafter in the early
morning hours of June 25, 2016, Mr. Campbell died of apparent
Campbell's surviving spouse, Plaintiff Michelle Campbell,
subsequently filed suit against Defendants Lake Regional
Medical Management, Inc., Lake Regional Health System, Lake
Regional Allied Services, Rene Revelle, Kandi Williams, Kandi
Padgett, John and Jane Does #1-10, and Dr. Michael J. Vierra,
asserting claims of negligence, negligent supervision, and
vicarious liability. In the complaint, Plaintiff claims that
the clinic and its staff were negligent in their treatment of
Mr. Campbell, including in failing to perform an adequate
medical history and misdiagnosing Mr. Campbell's acute
myocardial infarction, leading to a treatment that
exacerbated the condition and contributed to Mr.
Campbell's death. Plaintiff asserts that all Defendants
are liable for negligence (Count I) and negligent supervision
(Count II), and that Defendants Lake Regional Medical
Management, Inc., Lake Regional Health System, Lake Regional
Allied Services, and Does #1-6 are subject to vicarious
liability (Count III).
survive a motion to dismiss, a complaint “must contain
sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to ‘state
a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'”
Zink v. Lombardi, 783 F.3d 1089, 1098 (8th Cir.
2015) (quoting Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
(2009)). 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.” Iqbal, 556 U.S.
Rule of Civil Procedure 8 requires “a short and plain
statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled
to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). A plaintiff is
generally not required “to plead ‘specific
facts' explaining precisely how the defendant's
conduct was unlawful. Rather, it is sufficient for a
plaintiff to plead facts indirectly showing unlawful
behavior, so long as the facts pled give the defendant fair
notice of what the claim is and the grounds upon which it
rests, and allow the court to draw the reasonable inference
that the plaintiff is entitled to relief.” Braden
v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 588 F.3d 585, 595 (8th Cir.
2009) (citing Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 93
(2007) (per curiam); Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678).
Rule of Civil Procedure 12(e) permits a party to “move
for a more definite statement of a pleading to which a
responsive pleading is allowed but which is so vague or
ambiguous that the party cannot reasonably prepare a
response.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(e). This rule is not
intended to permit parties to cure an alleged lack of detail
but rather “is intended to serve as a means to remedy
unintelligible pleadings.” Resolution Trust Corp.
v. Fiala, 870 F.Supp. 962, 977 (E.D. Mo. 1994). Motions
for a more definite statement are “universally
disfavored” due to “liberal notice pleading and
the availability of extensive discovery.” Tinder v.
Lewis Cty. Nursing Home Dist., 207 F.Supp.2d 951, 959
(E.D. Mo. 2001). See also Sopkin v. Mo. Nat'l Life
Ins. Co., 222 F.Supp. 984, 985 (W.D. Mo. 1963);
Thrasher v. Mo. State Highway Comm'n, 534
F.Supp. 103, 106 (E.D. Mo. 1981).
complaint states three causes of action. In Count I, for
negligence, Plaintiff alleges that all Defendants owed a duty
to Mr. Campbell, that all Defendants breached that duty
resulting in injury to Mr. Campbell, and that Defendants were
thereby negligent in various ways surrounding the diagnosis,
care, and treatment of Mr. Campbell. Doc. 1 (Complaint),
¶ 50-54. In Count II, for negligent supervision,
Plaintiff alleges that all Defendants owed a duty to Mr.
Campbell, that all Defendants breached that duty resulting in
injury to Mr. Campbell, and that Defendants were thereby
negligent in the supervision and training of the clinic staff
and in the supervision of Mr. Campbell's treatment.
Id. at ¶ 60-63. In her allegations common to
all counts, Plaintiff asserts that, on the day before his
death, Mr. Campbell visited the Lake Regional Medical Urgent
Care - Eldon and received treatment from the clinic's
staff, including Dr. Vierra, Revelle, Williams, Padgett,
Does, and other Defendants. Id. at ¶ 31-33.
Dr. Vierra's Motion to Dismiss
Vierra moves to dismiss Plaintiff's claims against him
under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) for failure to
state a claim upon which relief can be granted.
Vierra asserts that Plaintiff has failed to state a claim
against him because the complaint “contains no specific
allegations that he breached any duty of care to the
decedent.” Doc. 14 (Defendant Dr. Vierra's Motion
to Dismiss), p. 1. Dr. Vierra argues that the complaint
contains no allegations concerning “the treatment he
provided and how that treatment was negligent” or
“how the specific treatment Dr. Vierra is alleged to
have provided deviated from the general standard of care so
as to support a negligence claim against Dr. Vierra, ”
and that, aside from Plaintiff's naming ...