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Earl A. Pondexter v. the Allegheny County (Proper)

November 4, 2011

EARL A. PONDEXTER, PLAINTIFF,
v.
THE ALLEGHENY COUNTY (PROPER), THE ALLGHENY COUNTY HOUSING AUTHORITY, DAN ONORATO, JAMES T. ZAPF, FRANK AGGAZIO, THOMAS MCPOYLE, JOHN JOYCE, ET AL, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Nora Barry Fischer United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Presently before this Court is a Motion by Defendant Allegheny County Housing Authority (Hereinafter "ACHA") and representatives of same, James T. Zapf, Frank Aggazio, Thomas McPoyle and John Joyce (Collectively "Defendants")*fn1 to enjoin Pro Se Plaintiff Earl A. Pondexter from filing lawsuits against them without requesting certification from a United States Magistrate Judge that the claims raised are meritorious. Plaintiff argues that such an injunction is not warranted. Although the Motion was initially made orally by ACHA, Defendants subsequently filed a Supplemental Motion and the issues have been exhaustively briefed and argued to this Court. (Docket Nos. 14, 24, 25, 26 and 29). Upon consideration of the parties‟ positions and for the following reasons, Defendants‟ Motion [26] is denied and an injunction will not issue.

I.Factual Background:

Plaintiff has filed three lawsuits against ACHA, including the current action, in the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania. The following is a summary of each.

a. 2001 Lawsuit:

In November 2001, Plaintiff filed his first suit against ACHA in this District (Civil A. 01-cv-2161), alleging race and disability discrimination because Plaintiff was allegedly denied a two-bedroom voucher, as a participant in the Section 8 Program in 1999. In September 2007, the Court granted ACHA‟s Motion for Summary Judgment, as Plaintiff‟s claims were barred by the applicable statute of limitation. (Civil A. 01-cv-2161, Docket No. 137). Plaintiff appealed and the judgment was affirmed by the Third Circuit on June 22, 2009. (Id. at Docket No. 151).

b. 2004 Lawsuit:

In April 2004, Plaintiff filed a second suit against ACHA in this District (Civil A. 04-cv-536). Here, Plaintiff alleged race and disability discrimination, in connection with his eviction from his residence in 2001.All defendants moved to dismiss the Complaint. HUD‟s and Green Meadows‟ Motions to Dismiss were granted, but Plaintiff was permitted to proceed with his case against ACHA. Thereafter, in October 2007, this Court granted ACHA‟s Motion for Summary Judgment, as Plaintiff failed to submit evidence that ACHA‟s actions were discriminatory or illegal. (Civil A. 04-cv-536, Docket No. 102). Plaintiff appealed and the judgments on the Motions to Dismiss and the Summary Judgment Motion were affirmed by the Third Circuit on June 22, 2009. (Id. at Docket No. 107).

c. Current 2011 Lawsuit:

Plaintiff filed a Complaint alleging Racial Discrimination and Racial Retaliation against Defendants, on June 30, 2011.*fn2 (Docket No. 4). Plaintiff argues that Defendants are "wantonly and maliciously denying the Plaintiff a full, "Fair and Equal Opportunity‟ to use and enjoy a dwelling on the basis of racism and retaliation." Id. at ¶ 1. Plaintiff contends that on May 10, 2010, he submitted a completed and signed Allegheny County Low Income Housing Application to ACHA. Id at ¶ 23. Subsequent to said submission, Plaintiff asserts that he did not receive any notification regarding his eligibility or ineligibility for low income housing assistance, administered through ACHA. Id at ¶ 24. On May 28, 2010, Plaintiff filed a 903 HUD FHEO discrimination complaint against ACHA with the local Fair Housing Partnership Program. Id at ¶ 24. Plaintiff was informed that HUD FHEO would not review or investigate the HUD FHEO 903 complaint and closed the case. Id at ¶ 25. Thereafter, on December 13, 2010, Plaintiff filed a Pennsylvania Human Relations Act Complaint against ACHA. Id at ¶¶ 25-26. On May 27, 2011, the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission determined that insufficient evidence existed to support Plaintiff‟s PHRA Complaint, finding that Plaintiff never filed an application for low income housing assistance. Id at ¶ 27. Said complaint was dismissed on June 10, 2011. Id. Thereafter, Plaintiff filed the instant Complaint in this Court. Id.

II. Procedural Background:

During the August 10, 2011 Status Conference*fn3 , the Court heard the parties‟ positions regarding Plaintiff‟s Prayer for Exigent Injunctive Relief contained in Plaintiff‟s "Planning For Discovery & Conference of the Parties", filed at Docket No. 7. (Docket No. 14).*fn4 Defendants made an oral Motion to enjoin Plaintiff from filing further claims prior to receiving certification of those claims from a Magistrate Judge. The Court indicated that it would take said Motion under advisement.*fn5 Id.

Thereafter, on August 23, 2011, Plaintiff filed a Pro Se Response to Judge Nora Barry Fischer‟s Void Order of Court: Granting to Hold in Abeyance the Responsive Pleading and Granting the Motion Enjoining the Plaintiff from Filing Further Claims Prior to Receiving Certification from a Federal Magistrate Judge. (Docket No. 24). In said Response [24], Plaintiff indicated that the Court granted Defendants‟ oral Motion to enjoin Plaintiff from filing further claims prior to receiving certification of those claims from a Magistrate Judge. Id. However, based on the foregoing, it is evident that the Court did not rule on Defendants‟ oral Motion to enjoin Plaintiff from filing further claims prior to receiving certification of those claims from a Magistrate Judge, but instead held said oral Motion in abeyance. (Docket Nos. 14 ...


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