Pam Kincaid v. James Anderson
UNPUBLISHED PER CURIAM OPINION filed. Originating case number: 1:14-cv-00027-JPJ-PMS Copies to all parties and the district court/agency. .. [16-1570]
Pg: 1 of 7
UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS
FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT
Plaintiff - Appellant,
JAMES W. ANDERSON; RUSSELL COUNTY (VIRGINIA) DEPARTMENT OF
DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES,
Defendants - Appellees,
RUSSELL COUNTY (VIRGINIA); HARRY FERGUSON, Chairman of the
Board of Social Services of Russell County (Virginia); ROGER
BROWN, Vice-Chairman of the Board of Social Services of
Russell County (Virginia); LAUREL RASNICK, Member of the
Board of Social Services of Russell County (Virginia); BILL
HALE, Member of the Board of Social Services of Russell
County (Virginia); REBECCA DYE, Member of the Board of
Social Services of Russell County (Virginia),
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Western
District of Virginia, at Abingdon.
James P. Jones, District
February 28, 2017
March 3, 2017
Before DUNCAN and THACKER, Circuit Judges, and DAVIS, Senior
Pg: 2 of 7
Affirmed by unpublished per curiam opinion.
Melvin E. Williams, MEL WILLIAMS PLC, Roanoke, Virginia, for
Edward G. Stout, Jr., Bristol, Virginia; Henry S.
Keuling-Stout, KEULING-STOUT, P.C., Big Stone Gap, Virginia, for
Unpublished opinions are not binding precedent in this circuit.
Pg: 3 of 7
Pam Kincaid filed a complaint asserting numerous causes of
action arising from her employment as a social work supervisor
with the Russell County, Virginia, Department of Social Services
discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims under Title
2000e-17 (2012), and claims under the Family and Medical Leave
Act of 1993, 29 U.S.C.A. §§ 2601-2654 (West 2012 & Supp. 2016),
against Russell County, RCDSS, and the RCDSS Board.
individual members of the Board and her former supervisor, James
W. Anderson, for due process violations under 42 U.S.C. § 1983
granting summary judgment to Defendants on the remaining claims.
Finding no reversible error, we affirm.
capacities were entitled to state sovereign immunity from all of
her claims except for those brought under Title VII.
Carolina, 787 F.3d 256, 261 (4th Cir. 2015).
While states are
Pg: 4 of 7
generally immune from suit in federal court, this immunity “does
not extend to suits prosecuted against a municipal corporation
or other governmental entity which is not an arm of the State.”
Alden v. Maine, 527 U.S. 706, 756 (1999).
In determining whether a governmental entity is an arm of
against the governmental entity would have to be paid from the
Cash v. Granville Cty. Bd. of Educ., 242
F.3d 219, 223 (4th Cir. 2001).
As the record here contains no
evidence regarding this factor, we look to “(1) the degree of
control that the State exercises over the entity or the degree
of autonomy from the State that the entity enjoys; (2) the scope
of the entity’s concerns—whether local or statewide—with which
the entity is involved; and (3) the manner in which State law
treats the entity.”
Id. at 224.
We discern no error in the
balance, weigh in favor of RCDSS functioning as an arm of the
Next, Kincaid challenges the district court’s dismissal of
her due process and state-law causes of action against the Board
members in their individual capacities for failure to state a
Pg: 5 of 7
allegations as true and drawing all reasonable inferences in the
nonmoving party’s favor.
Kensington Volunteer Fire Dep’t v.
Montgomery Cty., 684 F.3d 462, 467 (4th Cir. 2012); see Fed. R.
complaint’s factual allegations “must be enough to raise a right
to relief above the speculative level.”
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007).
Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Under this standard, bare
legal conclusions “are not entitled to the assumption of truth”
and are insufficient to state a claim.
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556
U.S. 662, 679 (2009).
We agree with the district court that Kincaid failed to
state a claim against the individual Board members with respect
to any of her causes of action.
First, because Kincaid held her
supervisory position with RCDSS on a probationary basis, she had
no constitutionally protected property interest in continuing to
hold that position.
See Bd. of Regents of State Colleges v.
Roth, 408 U.S. 564, 577 (1972); Andrew v. Clark, 561 F.3d 261,
269 (4th Cir. 2009).
As a result, the Board’s decision to
violate the Fourteenth Amendment due process clause.
protected liberty interest, for she failed to allege that any
Board member made public the reasons for her demotion.
Pg: 6 of 7
Sciolino v. City of Newport News. Va., 480 F.3d 642, 645-46 (4th
undermines her defamation claim.
See Jordan v. Kollman, 612
allegations against the Board members do not remotely approach
intentional infliction of emotional distress under Virginia law.
Consequently, we affirm the district court’s dismissal of all
claims against the Board members in their individual capacities.
Finally, Kincaid argues that the district court erred by
granting summary judgment to RCDSS and the Board on her Title
VII claims, and to Anderson on all claims directed against him.
Harris v. Norfolk S. Ry. Co., 784 F.3d 954, 962 (4th
Summary judgment is appropriate only where “there
is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed. R. Civ. P.
In determining whether a genuine issue of material fact
exists, we view the facts, and draw all reasonable inferences
therefrom, in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party.
Smith v. Gilchrist, 749 F.3d 302, 307 (4th Cir. 2014).
Pg: 7 of 7
district court committed no reversible error by declining to
court did not abuse its discretion in refusing to accept them.
See Fed. R. Civ. P. 33(b)(3), (5); Nader v. Blair, 549 F.3d 953,
963 (4th Cir. 2008) (stating standard of review).
agree with the district court that the other evidence in the
record fails to establish a genuine dispute of material fact
with regard to any of Kincaid’s remaining claims, and we thus
affirm the district court’s grant of summary judgment.
Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the district court.
this court and argument would not aid the decisional process.
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?