United States District Court, E.D. Oklahoma
MARY J. DANIELS and VICK A. DANIELS, Plaintiffs,
FORT GIBSON HOUSING AUTHORITY, Defendant.
OPINION AND ORDER
H. PAYNE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the Court is Defendant Fort Gibson Housing Authority’s
(“Defendant”) Motion to Dismiss (Dkt. 14).
Plaintiffs Mary J. Daniels and Vick A. Daniels
(“Plaintiffs”) have filed a Response (Dkt. 18)
and a Supplemental Response (Dkt. 19). Plaintiffs are
proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis.
After consideration of the briefs, and for the reasons stated
below, Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss is
Plaintiffs bring this action to recover against Defendants
for alleged violation of the Fair Housing Act
(“FHA”), 42 U.S.C. § 3601 et seq.,
breach of contract, fraud, embezzlement, and threatening and
intimidating tenants. (Dkt. 2). Plaintiffs’ factual
allegations are as follows:
Peggy? Sharon Fyte who work for Fort Gibson Housing Have
stolen our funds provided by Hud also have violated fair
Housing acts, intimidating tenants refusing services
(maintenance) for unit which we live in? stole Hud payments
for our allowances.
(Id. at 2). Plaintiffs request relief in the form of
“funds that were stolen and never returned reimbersed
[sic] for loss of furniture, medical bills do [sic] to visits
for stress, pain, suffering.” (Id. at 3).
has filed a motion to dismiss the allegations against it
pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) for
failure to state a claim upon which any relief can be granted
as a matter of law. (Dkt. 14). Defendant argues
Plaintiff’s allegations are almost entirely conclusory
and provide no information regarding dates or places.
Defendant contends these allegations fail to allege a
plausible claim for relief under any theory of federal or
state law, and Defendant cannot determine from
Plaintiff’s allegations whether the Complaint is timely
or barred by the applicable statute of limitations.
filed two short responses to Defendant’s motion (Dkt.
18; Dkt. 19). In the first response, Plaintiffs assert,
“[w]e do have all the paper work and dates we need to
back our claims,” and they claim Defendant made two
different offers to them to leave the property, one for
$8,500 and a second one for $11,500 as a “nuisance
settlement.” (Dkt. 18). In the supplemental response,
Plaintiffs state they are “throwing themselves at the
mercy of this court,” and they request an opportunity
for more time to obtain an attorney or an opportunity to meet
with the Court to produce “all of the evidence we have
documented through the previous court and our previous
attorney before possibly dismissing this case due to my
mistake?” (Dkt. 19). Plaintiffs further ask the Court
whether Defendant’s counsel has a conflict in
litigating this case, because Plaintiffs had previously
sought to hire him as counsel in this case. (Dkt. 19).
Defendant did not file a reply.
Standard of Review
considering a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, the court must accept all
well-pleaded allegations of the complaint as true, and must
construe them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff.
See Anderson v. Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith,
Inc., 521 F.3d 1278, 1284 (10th Cir. 2008). To withstand
a motion to dismiss, a complaint must contain enough
allegations of fact “to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). The plaintiff bears
the burden to frame “a complaint with enough factual
matter (taken as true) to suggest” that he or she is
entitled to relief. Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556.
“A pleading that offers ‘labels and
conclusions’ or ‘a formulaic recitation of the
elements of a cause of action will not do.’ Nor does a
complaint suffice if it tenders ‘naked
assertion[s]’ devoid of ‘further factual
enhancement.’” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556
U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at
Court further notes that, while pro se pleadings
must be liberally construed and must be held to less
stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers,
Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520 (1972), a
district court should not assume the role of advocate.
Hall v. Bellmon, 935 F.2d 1106, 1110 (10th Cir.
1991). Moreover, even pro se plaintiffs are required
to comply with the fundamental requirements of the Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure, and the liberal construction to be
afforded does not transform “vague and conclusory
arguments” into valid claims for relief. Ogden v.
San Juan County, 32 F.3d 452, 455 (10th Cir. 1994). The
Court “will not supply additional factual allegations
to round out a plaintiff’s complaint or construct a
legal theory on a plaintiff’s behalf.”
Whitney v. N.M., 113 F.3d 1170, 1173-74 (10th Cir.
seeks to dismiss Plaintiffs’ Complaint for failure to
allege or support with factual allegations any plausible
claim for relief. Plaintiffs allege violations of the FHA,
breach of contract, fraud, embezzlement, and intimidation.
However, Plaintiffs do not specify sufficient facts on which
to base any of those claims. Plaintiffs allege that
“Peggy?” and “Sharon Fyte,” who work
for Defendant, stole their HUD funds, and Defendant
intimidated tenants and refused services (maintenance) for
Plaintiffs’ unit. (Dkt. 2, at 2). These facts are
alleged without any context, and they do not provide
sufficient notice to enable Defendant to defend itself in
this case. Plaintiffs do not indicate which section(s) of the
FHA were allegedly violated, and they fail to tie any facts
to their conclusory allegations that Defendant violated the
FHA, breached a contract, or committed fraud, embezzlement,
or intimidation. In short, Plaintiff’s pleading fails
to satisfy the requirements of the Federal Rules of Civil
Procedure. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2) (“A