United States District Court, E.D. Virginia, Richmond Division
E. Payne, Senior United States District Judge.
matter is before the Court on DEFENDANT DAVID HUDSONS'S
MOTION TO DISMISS (ECF No. 27). For the reasons set forth
below, the motion will be granted.
Lightfoot ("Lightfoot") filed the COMPLAINT (ECF
No. 1) on November 14, 2016. Lightfoot alleged several claims
against several individuals affiliated with Linwood Holton
parties in this case previously attended an initial pretrial
conference on April 19, 2017. Based on the Court's review
of the COMPLAINT (ECF No. 2), DEFENDANT DAVID HUDSON'S
MOTION TO DISMISS (ECF No. 7), the MOTION TO
DISMISS (ECF No.12), and the supporting and
opposing memoranda, the Court determined that the Complaint
did not adequately set forth which claims were presented
against which defendants nor did the Complaint set forth
plausible claims within the meaning of Bell Atlantic v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544 (2007); Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 550 U.S. 662 (2009). Therefore, the Court granted
the motions to dismiss, and dismissed the Complaint in its
entirety without prejudice.
filed an AMENDED COMPLAINT (ECF No. 23) on May 10, 2017. The
Amended Complaint names the following individuals as
defendants: Richmond Public Schools
("RPS"), Dana T. Bedden ("Bedden"),
individually, and David Hudson, individually. The Amended
Complaint sets forth six claims. COUNT 1 asserts a violation
of Title VII, and, although it is described as
"Hudson's Sexual Harassment of Lightfoot, " the
count is alleged only against RPS. (AC, ¶ 23). COUNT 2
asserts a violation of Title VII, and, although it is
described as "Hudson's Retaliation Against Lightfoot
Because He Rejected Hudson's Sexual Overtures, " it
is alleged only against RPS. (AC, ¶ 31). COUNT 3 asserts
a violation of Title VII, and, although it is described as
"Retaliation Hudson Recommends Nonrenewal of
Lightfoot's Assistant Principal Position, " it is
only alleged against RPS. (AC, ¶ 36) . COUNT 4 asserts a
claim against Hudson for Hudson's Tortious Interference
with Lightfoot's Employment Contract. COUNT 5, alleged
against RPS and Bedden, challenges Bedden's Decision to
Nonrenew Lightfoot's Contract as a violation of
Lightfoot's Due Process Rights. COUNT 6, also alleged
against RPS and Bedden, asserts Bedden's Failure to Give
Lightfoot an Opportunity to Respond as a denial of
Lightfoot's Procedural Due Process Rights.
general language in Hudson's motion to dismiss reads as
if the Amended Complaint asserts more than one claim against
Hudson. However, Hudson's brief only seeks dismissal of
COUNT 4, the Tortious Interference by Hudson with
Lightfoot's Employment Contract which is the only claim
against Hudson. In deciding the motion to dismiss, the
facts, as alleged, must be taken as true.
Amended Complaint alleges that, in the summer of 2014,
Lightfoot worked as a school counselor for the Richmond
Public School ("RPS") . (AC, ¶ 12) . Hudson
was, and remains, the Principal of Linwood Holton Elementary
School. .Id. at ¶ 11. In the summer of 2014,
during a track meet, Hudson approached Lightfoot and stated
that Lightfoot looked familiar. Id. "Lightfoot
told Hudson that he was currently seeking an administrative
position and Hudson responded that he was seeking to appoint
an assistant principal at Holton Elementary and that
Lightfoot should send him his resume." Id. at
¶ 14. "Hudson told Lightfoot that his lack of
experience and training did not matter to him because he
would mentor and teach him everything that he needed to know
and that he would develop Lightfoot into a principal in two
to three years.” Id. at ¶ 17.
subsequently recommended to Anthony Leonard
("Leonard"), the Assistant Superintendent of RPS,
and Dana T. Bedden ("Bedden"), the Superintendent
of RPS, that Lightfoot be considered for the position of
assistant principal at Holton Elementary. Id. at
¶ 19. "Leonard and Bedden did not agree with
Hudson's request pointing out to Hudson that Lightfoot
lacked classroom and supervisory experience during his
employment with RPS." Id. at ¶ 20.
"Hudson was resolute and insistent . . . [and] Bedden
and Leonard reluctantly approved the appointment."
Id. at ¶¶ 21-22.
the first week of September 2014, which was at the start of
the 2014-2015 school year", Lightfoot noticed
"Hudson was intently gazing at his crotch."
Id. at ¶ 24. Hudson said to Lightfoot, "I
have expensive taste -[sic] you need to take me to the
Ritz-Carlton in Washington, DC." Id. at ¶
25. Lightfoot decided not to respond to Hudson's sexually
suggestive comment, for fear that "any response would
have jeopardized his position." Id. at ¶
27. Lightfoot alleges that Hudson made at least ten or more
sexually suggestive comments to him after the first incident,
"such as, 'when are you going to take me to
dinner?'" Id. at ¶ 29.
it became clear to Hudson that Lightfoot was not interested
in his sexual overtures, Hudson began a campaign to punish
Lightfoot's rejection of his sexual overtures which
created for Lightfoot a hostile work environment."
Id. at ¶ 33. "In the last week of August,
2014, Hudson gave Lightfoot a list of items to complete but
did not specify the time in which he expected the list to be
completed." Id. at ¶ 36(a). When Lightfoot
did not finish the tasks by the next week, "Hudson
responded that he felt that a week was ample time to complete
the list. When Lightfoot explained that he needed more time
and help to complete the list, Hudson replied, "I
can't evaluate you if I don't know what you can
do." Id. at ¶ 36(c). In November of 2014,
Lightfoot asked Hudson for help regarding a science museum
field trip but "Hudson refused and told Lightfoot that
he, Hudson, needed to see what he, Lightfoot, could do."
Id. at ¶ 36(e). On another occasions, Hudson
told Lightfoot "to revise the cafeteria schedule and
rearrange the cafeteria tables and adjust the lunch
times." Id. at ¶ 36(f). Because of his
short tenure in his position, Lightfoot did not know the
details to complete this task and "Hudson offered
Lightfoot no assistance with regard to this task."
February 9, 2015, Hudson delivered a letter to Lightfoot,
regarding an "IEP" meeting on February 4, 2015
"which Lightfoot inadvertently failed to attend because
he was at the University of Richmond attending a Leadership
Academy meeting." (AC, ¶ 37). The letter indicated
that Hudson was concerned about Lightfoot's performance
as assistant principal. Id.
response to the letter, Lightfoot requested a meeting with
Leonard in order to "advise him of Hudson's
treatment and to seek his advice." Id. at
¶ 38. Lightwood did not reveal to Leonard the alleged
harassment by Hudson but instead described the
"other" treatment by Hudson. Id. at ¶
41. Leonard advised Lightfoot that Hudson had already spoken
with him prior to the meeting and Hudson told Leonard about
Lightfoot missing the IEP meeting. Id. at ¶ 40.
Leonard subsequently called Hudson and explained that
"Hudson had ...