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Tara M. Wilson v. New York City Police Department

March 25, 2011

TARA M. WILSON,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
NEW YORK CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Paul A. Crotty, United States District Judge:

USDC SDNY DOCUMENT

ELECTRONICALLY FILED DOC #:

ORDER ADOPTING R&R

Tara M. Wilson ("Wilson") brings this action, pro se, pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e et seq. ("Title VII"); New York State Human Rights Law ("NYSHRL"), N.Y. Exec. Law §§ 290 et seq.; and New York City Human Rights Law ("NYCHRL"), N.Y.C. Admin. Code §§ 8-101 et seq., against the New York City Police Department ("NYPD"), Wilson's former co-workers, and the City of New York (collectively "Defendants"). Wilson claims that Defendants discriminated against her in the terms and conditions of her employment, exposed her to a hostile work environment, retaliated against her, and ultimately constructively terminated her, all on the basis of her sex, race and national origin.

After the Court referred the general pretrial and dispositive motions in the case to Magistrate Judge Henry B. Pitman, by Order dated March 31, 2009, Defendants moved to dismiss all of Wilson's claims under Rule 12(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. On February 4, 2011, Magistrate Judge Pitman issued a Report and Recommendation ("R&R"), recommending that the motion be granted in part and denied in part. No objections were filed. The Court's review of the R&R finds no clear error, and accordingly the Court adopts Magistrate Judge Pitman's R&R. The motion to dismiss is granted as to (1) all claims against defendants Ross, Brooke-Smith, Williams, Yaffascha Jackson, and Greene; (2) Title VII claims based on acts that occurred prior to March 29, 2007; (3) any claim of discrimination based on national origin; (4) all Title VII claims against individual defendants; and (5) NYSHRL and NYCHRL claims based on any and all acts prior to April 19, 2005. The motion is denied in all other respects.

BACKGROUND

The Court assumes the parties' familiarity with the underlying facts of the case. Stated briefly, Wilson, a 39-year-old black woman of Panamanian descent, began her employment with the NYPD in August 1998. (See Amended Complaint, dated August 20, 2009 ("Am. Compl."), Typed Statement at 1.) In November 2004, she was promoted to sergeant, and shortly thereafter was assigned to Transit District #33. (Id.) She was transferred to the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity ("OEEO") in July 2005, and to the Patrol Bureau Brooklyn South ("PBBS") in September 2006. (R&R at 4.) On April 4, 2007, after taking a sick leave, Wilson returned to PBBS and was reassigned to a position with the Evidence Collection Unit, which entailed working hours which Wilson claims were burdensome and inflexible. (Id. at 7.) Wilson retired in September 2007. (Id. at 21.)

Wilson's allegations include numerous instances of sexual harassment, and several comments made to her in reference to her race. (R&R at 4-7.) In addition, Wilson believes that her April 4, 2007 transfer was both discriminatory and retaliatory. (Id. at 7, 21 n.6.) Finally, Wilson alleges that discriminatory practices and a hostile work environment forced her to retire. (Id. at 8.)

Wilson filed a charge of discrimination with the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") on January 23, 2008, and obtained a right-to-sue letter on December 5, 2008. Wilson filed a Complaint on March 23, 2009, and an Amended Complaint on August 20, 2009.

Defendants moved to dismiss Wilson's Amended Complaint on May 18, 2010 under Rules 12(b)(1), 12(b)(2), and 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. (See R&R at 9.) Magistrate Judge Pitman summarizes Defendants' claims as follows:

(1) plaintiff's Title VII claims are untimely; (2) plaintiff has failed to exhaust her administrative remedies on her Title VII claims with the EEOC; (3) plaintiff has failed to state a claim in accordance with the proper pleading standard; (4) plaintiff's Title VII claims do not allow for recovery against the individual defendants; (5) plaintiff's State and City Human Rights Law claims are partially time-barred; (6) the court should decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction concerning all of plaintiff's State and City Human Rights Law claims, and (7) plaintiff failed to serve defendants Sgt. Margaret Ross, DI Higdon, P.O. Athena Brooke-Smith, Detective Debbie Williams, P.O. Yaffascha Jackson, Det. Marilyn Pagan and Lt. Michael Greene within the time limit set forth in Fed. R. Civ. P. 4(m). (R&R at 9-10.) Magistrate Judge Pitman issued his R&R on February 4, 2011 recommending that Defendants' motion be granted in part and denied in part. (R&R at 2.) The R&R provided fourteen days for written objections pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(c) and Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(b). No objections were filed.

DISCUSSION

I.Standard of Review

A district court may "accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the findings or recommendations made by the magistrate judge." 28 U.S.C. ยง 636(b)(1). "The district court may adopt those portions of the report to which no timely objection has been made, so long as there is no clear error on the face of the record." ...


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