Rynders v. Arkansas Department of Community Corrections
OPINION AND ORDER that Plaintiff's complaint is DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE. Signed by Honorable P. K. Holmes, III on July 1, 2016. (lw)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
HOT SPRINGS DIVISION
OF COMMUNITY CORRECTIONS
OPINION AND ORDER
Before the Court is Plaintiff Shannon Rynders’s motion (Doc. 10) to extent the time for
service nunc pro tunc. No brief in support was filed. Defendant Arkansas Department of
Community Corrections (“ADCC”) has filed a response and brief in support.
Rynders did not serve the ADCC with her complaint until one day after the time for service
under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(m) had passed. She does not set out good cause or
excusable neglect for her failure to timely serve ADCC. Rynders explains that she timely delivered
her complaint to a process server but could not confirm service and had to use another process
server. She states that her inability to confirm service with the first process server was the basis
for her April 4, 2016 motion (Doc. 5) to enforce and extend time for service (though this is not
clear from the face of that motion, which was denied by the Court). In the Court’s view these
statements lack sufficient detail to show either good cause or excusable neglect for failure to timely
Moreover, Rynders admits that her Title VII claim is subject to dismissal on the basis that
she did not file a timely EEOC charge against ADCC. 1 (Doc. 10, ¶ 2 (“It appears that Plaintiff’s
ADCC incorrectly identifies this defect as jurisdictional. See Zipes v. Trans World
Airlines, Inc., 455 U.S. 385, 393 (1982) (“We hold that filing a timely charge of discrimination
with the EEOC is not a jurisdictional prerequisite to suit in federal court, but a requirement that,
like a statute of limitations, is subject to waiver, estoppel, and equitable tolling.”). Rynders’s
charge was untimely, so her Title VII claim is due to be dismissed, but Plaintiff may wish to amend
her Complaint to assert additional federal causes of action.”)). Rynders’s complaint raises two
claims—the Title VII claim and a claim under the Arkansas Civil Rights Act (“ACRA”). This
Court has supplemental jurisdiction over the ACRA claim under 28 U.S.C. § 1367. Because
Rynders admits that the Title VII claim is subject to dismissal, and because upon dismissing that
claim, at this early stage of the litigation the Court in its discretion under 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(3)
would decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over the ACRA claim, granting Rynders’s
motion to extend the time for service nunc pro tunc would be futile.
Instead, because Rynders concedes that her Title VII claim is subject to dismissal, and
because that concession is in response to a defense asserted by ADCC in its answer, the Court sees
no reason why it should not dismiss that claim by this order, and then decline to exercise
jurisdiction over the ACRA claim and dismiss it as well.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that Plaintiff Shannon Rynders’s motion to extend the
time for service nunc pro tunc (Doc. 10) is DENIED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Plaintiff’s complaint is DISMISSED WITHOUT
IT IS SO ORDERED this 1st day of July, 2016.
/s/P. K. Holmes, III
P.K. HOLMES, III
CHIEF U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE
failure to timely file a charge does not deprive this Court of subject matter jurisdiction, but instead
opens her claim to Rule 12(b)(6) dismissal. See Jessie v. Potter, 516 F.3d 709, 712–13 (8th Cir.
2008) (noting that post-Zipes, this Circuit has applied a Rule 12(b)(6) standard of review to court
decisions to dismiss based on failure to timely file an EEOC charge).
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