Wright v. Igloo Products Corp
ORDER ADOPTING MEMORANDUM AND RECOMMENDATIONS re: 47 Memorandum and Recommendations, denying 42 MOTION for Recusal, granting 25 MOTION to Dismiss and Compel Arbitration (Signed by Judge Sim Lake) Parties notified. (aboyd, 4)
United States District Court
Southern District of Texas
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS
January 24, 2017
David J. Bradley, Clerk
CIVIL ACTION NO. H-16-0202
IGLOO PRODUCTS CORP.,
ORDER ADOPTING MEMORANDUM & RECOMMENDATION
Pending before the court are Plaintiff's Motion and Complaint
Disqualification, and Pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
(Docket Entry No.
144 ("Pl.'s Mot. to
and Plaintiff's Written
Objection to Document #47 and All Documents Filed by Defendant
(Docket Entry No. 48).
Plaintiff filed this action against Defendant under Title VII
Defendant discriminated against Plaintiff based on her race, sex,
and that Defendant retaliated against and terminated
Plaintiff for reporting harassment. 1
Plaintiff also brings other
claims under Titles 42, 29, and 18 of the United States Code.
See Employment Discrimination Complaint - Original Complaint
("Pl.'s Complaint") , Docket Entry No. 1; Amended Documents
Complaint ("Pl.'s Amended Complaint"), Docket Entry No. 38, pp. 5-6.
Plaintiff has filed numerous motions in this case.
moved for a default judgment on May 20,
2016, 2 which the court
denied because Defendant filed an answer by the deadline. 3
June 15, 2016, the court held a hearing at which it denied
Plaintiff's Motion for More Definitive Answer and/or
Pleading and Clarification of Specifics in Responsive
Pleading Filed as Document 8 on 05/02/16 (Docket Entry
No. 11) and
Plaintiff's Complaint of Defendant's Impropriety and
Motion for Probable Cause in Opposition of Defendant's
Obstruction of Justice and Perjury, and Motion to Hold
Defendant and Defendant's Counsel in Contempt of Court,
Regarding the Falsification of Defendant's Electronically
Document 8 Filed 05/02/16, and Motion to Deny Defendant's
Motion to Dismiss Pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b) (6) If
and When Filed, and Order for Defendant to Show Cause
(Docket Entry No. 12) . 4
The court held another hearing on October 5,
at which it
granted in part Plaintiff's Motion to Compel the production of any
audio or video recording of the incident if available. 5
hearing Defendant produced for inspection the original signed copy
of the arbitration agreement. 6
Entry No. 9.
Entry of Default
See Memorandum and Recommendation, Docket Entry No. 23; Order
Adopting Magistrate Judge's Memorandum and Recommendation (dated
July 19, 2016), Docket Entry No. 26.
See Courtroom Minutes-Order
Entry No. 21.
(dated June 15,
See Courtroom Minutes-Order (dated October 6, 2016), Docket
Entry No. 39.
On October 19,
Plaintiff filed the pending motion to
recuse and an affidavit in support of her motion. 7
On December 13,
2016, the court recommended granting Defendant's Motion to Dismiss
did not provide
assertions that the signature on the arbitration agreement was a
witnessed Plaintiff sign the arbitration agreement. 8
Motion for Recusal
In her motion and accompanying affidavit, Plaintiff complains
that the magistrate judge ignored information Plaintiff submitted
to the court, allowed Defendant to submit forged documents, and did
not send Plaintiff a copy of a minute entry.
Plaintiff asks that
the magistrate judge's rulings and minute entries be vacated on the
grounds of bias, and that Defendant's pleadings be stricken.
Plaintiff specifically asks for a recusal of the magistrate
8, 16, 17,
Documents filed by the Defendant." 9
39, and "any future
Plaintiff accuses Defendant,
See Pl.'s Mot. to Recuse Mag. J., Docket Entry No. 42, ;
Affidavit in Support of Recusal and Complaint Against Magistrate
Judge ("Plaintiff's Affidavit"), Docket Entry No. 43.
See Memorandum and Recommendation, Docket Entry No. 47.
See Pl.'s Mot. to Recuse Mag. J., Docket Entry No. 42, p. 25.
as she has in previous motions, of violating various sections of
Title 18 of the United States Code (the "Federal Criminal Code") . 10
Plaintiff also accuses the magistrate judge of ignoring evidence
and Plaintiff's causes of action. 11
Along with the motion for recusal,
Plaintiff submitted an
violated various sections of the Federal Criminal Code and the
Texas Penal Code; the magistrate judge ignored evidence; Defendant
Plaintiff never received Docket Entry No. 31 from Defendant. 12
Section 455 of Title 28 directs a judge to disqualify herself
"in any proceeding in which [her] impartiality might reasonably be
require that the judge recuse,
Certain specific circumstances
including where the judge "has a
The standard for determining whether a judge should
recuse based on Section 455 is "whether a reasonable person, with
full knowledge of all the circumstances, would harbor doubts about
the judge's impartiality."
(5th Cir. 1999)
Matassarin v. Lynch, 174 F.3d 549, 571
(quoting Vieux Carre Property Owners, Residents,
and Assocs., Inc. v. Brown, 948 F.2d 1436, 1448 (5th Cir. 1991)).
See id. at 7-9.
See id. at 1-25.
See Pl.'s Affidavit, Docket Entry No 43.
Section 144 of Title 28 states in relevant part:
Whenever a party to any proceeding in a district court
makes and files a timely and sufficient affidavit that
the judge before whom the matter is pending has a
personal bias or prejudice either against him or in favor
of any adverse party, such judge shall proceed no further
therein, but another judge shall be assigned to hear such
ordinary admonishments to counsel and to witnesses are not valid
bases for motions to recuse for personal bias or prejudice.
ordinary efforts at courtroom administration-even a stern and shorttempered judge's ordinary efforts at courtroom administration-remain
immune [from establishing a bias]."); see also Raborn v. Inpatient
"opinions formed by the judge on the basis of facts introduced or
events occurring in the course of the current proceedings .
not constitute a basis for a bias or partiality motion unless they
display a deep-seated favoritism or antagonism that would make fair
The disqualification decision is within the
"sound discretion" of the judge.
In re Deepwater Horizon, 824 F.3d
571, 579-80 (5th Cir. 2016).
Plaintiff's complaints about several of the magistrate judge's
rulings are not a valid basis upon which a judge may be recused.
gave plaintiff multiple
court, and explained to Plaintiff that she cannot bring causes of
action under the
Federal Criminal Code.
motion Plaintiff complains
In her affidavit and
that Defendant has
documents to the court, including the arbitration agreement that is
However, Plaintiff has not provided the court with
persuasive evidence that any document was a forgery.
"deep-seated favoritism or antagonism"
See In re Deepwater Horizon,
824 F.3d at 579-80.
Plaintiff's Motion and Complaint to Recuse Magistrate
Judge Pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
to 28 U.S.C.
455 - Disqualification, and Pursuant
144 (Docket Entry No. 42) is DENIED.
Memorandum and Recommendation
Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 72, the court must
review decisions on nondispositive motions by the magistrate judge
and "modify or set aside any part of the order that is clearly
erroneous or is contrary to law."
Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(a)
court reviews decisions by the magistrate judge on dispositive
motions it is a de novo review.
Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(b) (3).
The court has conducted a de novo review of the magistrate
judge's Memorandum and Recommendation
(Docket Entry No.
The court is of the opinion that said Memorandum
and Recommendation should be adopted by this court.
Accordingly, the Memorandum and Recommendation (Docket Entry
is hereby ADOPTED by this court.
Defendant's Motion to
Dismiss and Compel Arbitration (Docket Entry No. 25)
A district court has the discretion to dismiss an action when all
the issues must be submitted to arbitration.
Alford v. Dean Witter
Reynolds, Inc., 975 F.2d 1161, 1164 (5th Cir. 1992).
there is no reason to retain jurisdiction over the
action, and it will be dismissed without prejudice.
The Clerk shall send copies of this Order to the respective
SIGNED at Houston, Texas, on this 24th day of January, 2017.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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