Mojazza v. Farmington City
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER denying 16 Motion for Summary Judgment. Signed by Judge David Nuffer on 1/6/17 (alt)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF UTAH, CENTRAL DIVISION
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND
ORDER DENYING THE MOTION FOR
Case No. 1:14-CV-00017
District Judge David Nuffer
Sarah Mojazza (Mojazza) alleges that Farmington City (City) violated Title VII of the
Civil Rights act in three ways: First, sexual harassment; 1 second, sex discrimination; 2 and third,
retaliation. 3 The City moved for summary judgment on all claims. 4 Mojazza responded in
opposition. 5 The City replied. 6
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Summary judgment is appropriate if “there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and
the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” 7 A factual dispute is genuine when “there is
sufficient evidence on each side so that a rational trier of fact could resolve the issue either way.” 8 In
Complaint at 6, docket no. 2, February 26, 2014.
Id. at 8.
Motion and Memorandum in Support of Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment (Motion), docket no. 16, filed
June 29, 2015.
Plaintiff’s Memorandum in Opposition to Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment, docket no. 21, filed August
Reply Memorandum in Support of Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment, docket no. 25, filed August 18,
Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(a).
Adler v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 144 F.3d 664, 670 (10th Cir. 1998).
determining whether there is a genuine dispute as to material fact, the court should “view the factual
record and draw all reasonable inferences therefrom most favorably to the nonmovant.” 9
The moving party “bears the initial burden of making a prima facie demonstration of the
absence of a genuine issue of material fact and entitlement to judgment as a matter of law.” 10
There are many disputed material facts in this motion. Principal among them are those
relating to Mojazza’s interactions with her direct supervisors. For example, Mojazza’s supervisor
testifies that the alleged harassment was first brought to his attention after December 25, 2012
while Mojazza testifies that the alleged harassment was first brought to her supervisor’s attention
on November 11, 2012. 11 Indeed, the facts set out in the Motion itself are irreconcilable. 12 There
is little to no contemporary documentation to rely on. For instance, the City contends that it
terminated Mojazza because she used inappropriate language while on the job in front of
Farmington citizens, 13 but there is no supporting documentation. Simply, the City says she did,
but she says she did not. 14 These and many others 15 are the classic factual disputes destined for
Id. at 670-71.
See, e.g., Motion ¶ 17 at xiv and Opposition at 15.
See, e.g., Motion ¶ 23 at xv (stating that Mojazza testified that a coworker touched her “butt in and out of the fire
engine or on scene he touched her butt, he grabs my boobs”); compare Motion ¶ 48 at xx (stating that the coworker
testified that “he never touched Ms. Mojazza inappropriately.”).
Motion ¶ 66 at xxiii (quoting Mojazza’s supervisor’s testimony that Mojazza used strong profanity in front of
Exhibit A (Sarah Mojazza Deposition Transcript) at 138, docket no. 22-1, filed August 4, 2015 (Mojazza
testifying that she did not use that language in front of Farmington citizens).
For further illustration, Mojazza testified that at her supervisor’s request she showed an explicit photo to her
supervisor of someone who allegedly raped her. See Sarah Mojazza Deposition Transcript at 48. But the supervisor
testified that Mojazza showed him the photo at “random,” as if she were “boasting.” Exhibit F (Thurgood
Deposition Transcript) at 61–64, docket no. 22-6, filed August 4, 2015.
juries, not resolvable by the court on a motion for summary judgment: A rational trier of fact
could decide the matter either way.
The relevant legal tests to which the jury will apply the facts will be decided after pretrial motions and jury instructions are resolved. 16 A trial order will issue.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the Motion and Memorandum in Support of Defendant’s
Motion for Summary Judgment 17 is DENIED.
Signed January 6, 2017.
BY THE COURT
District Judge David Nuffer
It is worth noting at this point, however, that the parties adopted an incorrect standard for the Title VII prima facie
case. They include an element for considering how “a similarly situated person outside the protected class was
treated differently than she was treated.” Motion at xlviii; Opposition at 72. Though the 10th Circuit’s jurisprudence
on the elements of the prima facie case is not necessarily consistent, it generally eschews the disparate treatment
requirement. See Sorbo v. United Parcel Service, 432 F.3d 1169, 1173 (10th Cir. 2005) (the requirement that the
court consider how similarly situated employees who are not part of the protected class were treated, “has limited if
indeed any, remaining application in this circuit”); see also Tabor v. Hilti Inc., 703 F.3d 1206, 1216 (10th Cir.
Docket no. 16, filed June 29, 2015.
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?