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Thompson v. XL Parts LLC

United States District Court, S.D. Texas, Houston Division

April 26, 2019

THOMAS THOMPSON, Plaintiff,
v.
XL PARTS LLC a/k/a XL PARTS, Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM AND RECOMMENDATION

          FRANCES H. STACY, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Pending in this case that has been referred for all further pre-trial proceedings is Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment (Document No. 17). Having considered that motion, Plaintiffs response in opposition (Document No. 22), Defendant's reply (Document No. 23), the claim(s) alleged in Plaintiffs Original Complaint, the summary judgment evidence, and the applicable law, the Magistrate Judge RECOMMENDS, for the reasons set forth below, that Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment be GRANTED.

         I. Background

         This is an employment discrimination case brought by Plaintiff Thomas Thompson ("Thompson") against his former employer XL Parts, LLC ("XL Parts") for sex discrimination and retaliation. Thompson alleges in his Original Complaint that "Defendant took a stance where they treated female employees more favorably than they did him," and that Defendant "failed to allow [him] to address his accusers and accusations in detail [that he made female employees uncomfortable] on at least two occasions," thereby treating him "less favorably than female employees." The entirety of Thompson's allegations are as follows:

4.1 Plaintiff worked for XL Parts LLC (Defendant) for approximately three years as Training and Development Manager. Defendant never disciplined him or wrote him up for any misconduct or behavioral issues.
4.2 Defendant took a stance with Plaintiff where they treated female employees more favorably than they did him.
4.3 Plaintiff maintained a practice where he took all new hires to lunch. Defendant informed Plaintiff that he was not allowed to put himself in a position where he was to be one on one with a female employee at the same time refusing to allow him to find out if he did anything that made a female uncomfortable. Plaintiff made two other requests to obtain this information and Human Resources ignored him. Defendant did not ignore the female employee.
4.4. On another occasion, Defendant told Plaintiff a female employee was uncomfortable with him in her store (Plaintiff was there to train and coach her). To the contrary, the female told him she was not uncomfortable with him and didn't have any problems with him in her store.
4.5 Plaintiff had requested a meeting with this employee, human resources, his supervisor and the Dallas General manager. Defendant refused. To the contrary, when Plaintiffs female human resources counterpart requested to discuss the same issues about him in the presence of Defendant's president, the COO, CFO, the Houston general manager, the field trainer and the president of Marubeni North America, Defendant acquiesced. This was inappropriate.
4.6 Defendant wholly failed to allow Plaintiff to address his accusers and accusations in detail on at least two occasions. Defendant treated Plaintiff less favorably than female employees.
4.7 Defendant terminated Plaintiff on June 14, 2016.
4.8 Defendant has discriminated against Plaintiff, in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act as amended.

         Complaint (Document No. l)at2-3. Given the paucity of allegations, XL Parts filed a Rule 12(b)(6) Motion to Dismiss and, alternatively, Motion for a More Definite Statement (Document No. 6). On September 5, 2018, the Court denied without prejudice XL Parts' Rule 12(b)(6) Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim, but granted XL Parts' Motion for More Definite Statement and ordered Thompson to re-plead within fourteen days (Document No. 13). To this date, Thompson has not re-pleaded or otherwise complied with the September 5, 2018 Order.

         XL Parts now seeks summary judgment on Thompson's claim(s), arguing that Thompson has no evidence to support a sex discrimination claim, and that he has not only failed to re-plead his claim, he has failed to participate in discovery of any kind. Thompson, in response, has submitted his own Declaration (Document No. 22-2), along with three exhibits: an Employer response to Notice of Application for Unemployment Benefits (Document No. 22-3), an XL Parts Corrective Action "form" (Document Nos. 22-4 and 22-5), and an email exchange between Curt Miles and Jose Ferraracci (Document No. 22-6). XL Parts, in reply, argues that nothing Thompson has submitted raises a genuine issue of material fact on the required elements of a prima facie claim. In addition, XL Parts argues that ...


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