United States District Court, D. Massachusetts
CARMEN A. ALICEA, Plaintiff,
NORTH AMERICAN CENTRAL SCHOOL BUS, LLC, Defendant.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER ON DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO
Dennis Saylor IV United States District Judge
a workplace discrimination action. Plaintiff Carmen Alicea
has brought suit against her former employer, defendant North
American Central School Bus, LLC. The complaint alleges
claims arising under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of
1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., and the Age
Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”), 29
U.S.C. § 621 et seq.
has moved to dismiss the complaint for failure to state a
claim upon which relief can be granted. For the following
reasons, defendant's motion will be granted.
facts are set forth as alleged in the complaint.
Carmen Alicea is a Hispanic woman over the age of forty.
North American Central School Bus, LLC, (“NACSB”)
is a limited liability company that manages school bus
contracts, including the contract for the Waltham schools.
August 1, 2011, Alicea began working for NACSB as a contract
manager. Alicea's son, Francisco, also worked for NACSB,
as a bus monitor.
October 17, 2012, Francisco was accused of “engaging in
[unspecified] inappropriate activity.” (Compl. ¶
8). The Waltham schools “requested [his] immediate
complaint alleges that it was one of Alicea's duties as a
contract manager to investigate allegations of wrongdoing,
and that pursuant to that duty, she attempted to view videos
in the custody of the police concerning the October 17
incident. The police refused to permit Alicea to view the
videos. Thereafter, Alicea filed a report with NACSB
concerning what she knew of the October 17 incident.
Francisco was never criminally charged in connection with the
incident, although he was terminated from employment at
complaint alleges that after the incident, Alicea was
“led to believe that everything was going well with her
job” and her supervisor “continued to reassure
her not to worry.” (Compl. ¶ 18). Despite those
reassurances, she had hints that all was not well. First, she
received an email stating that NACSB was transitioning a new
manager for the Belmont location-apparently into her job.
When asked, her supervisor told her that the new manager
would be placed at a different location. Later, she saw an
advertisement on Craigslist.com stating that NACSB was
interviewing candidates for a manager position, but was again
reassured that the advertisement concerned a different
position and that she would not be replaced.
February 4, 2013, Alicea was terminated. She was
“ultimately replaced by a younger (under age 40), male,
Caucasian employee.” (Compl. ¶ 25).
September 23, 2016, Alicea brought this action alleging
claims for discrimination and retaliation under Title VII and
the ADEA. On December 20, 2016, defendant moved to dismiss
the complaint under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6).
motion to dismiss, the court “must assume the truth of
all well-plead[ed] facts and give the plaintiff the benefit
of all reasonable inferences therefrom.” Ruiz v.
Bally Total Fitness Holding Corp., 496 F.3d 1, 5 (1st
Cir. 2007) (citing Rogan v. Menino, 175 F.3d 75, 77
(1st Cir. 1999)). To survive a motion to dismiss, the
complaint must state a claim that is “plausible on its
face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
544, 570 (2007). That is, “[f]actual allegations must
be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative
level . . . on the assumption that all the allegations in the
complaint are true (even if doubtful in fact).”
Id. at 555 (citations omitted). “The
plausibility standard is not akin to a ‘probability
requirement, ' but it asks for more than a sheer
possibility that a defendant has acted unlawfully.”
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting
Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556). Dismissal is appropriate
if the complaint fails to set forth “factual
allegations, either direct ...