United States District Court, S.D. California
ORDER: (1) GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS
PLAINTIFF'S THIRD AMENDED COMPLAINT, (DOC. NO. 43); (2)
DENYING AS MOOT PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY
INJUNCTION, (DOC. NO. 57); (3) DENYING AS MOOT
PLAINTIFF'S EX PARTE MOTION FOR AN ORDER SHORTENING TIME,
(DOC. NO. 59); (4) SUA SPONTE STRIKING ALL DOE
ANTHONY J. BATTAGLIA, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
before the Court are: (1) Defendant California Board of
Registered Nursing's (“Defendant”) motion to
dismiss Plaintiff William Sabatini's
(“Plaintiff”) Third Amended Complaint, (Doc. No.
43); (2) Plaintiff's motion for a preliminary injunction,
(Doc. No. 57); and (3) Plaintiff's ex parte motion for an
order shortening time, (Doc. No. 59). The Court heard oral
argument on Defendant's motion to dismiss on November 14,
2019. For the reasons set forth below, the Court
GRANTS Defendant's motion to dismiss.
Plaintiff's Third Amended Complaint is DISMISSED
WITHOUT LEAVE TO AMEND and all Doe defendants are
STRICKEN from the action. Additionally,
Plaintiff's motion for a preliminary injunction and ex
parte motion for an order shortening time are DENIED
present action relates to state administrative disciplinary
proceedings by Defendant California Board of Registered
Nursing against Plaintiff. On four separate occasions between
January 2013 to May 2015, Plaintiff abused controlled
substances while working as a registered nurse. (Third
Amended Complaint (“TAC”) ¶¶ 1, 23.)
Defendant learned of Plaintiff's actions and began a
formal investigation into Plaintiff's use of controlled
substances. (Id. ¶ 24.) Following that
investigation, Defendant filed formal accusations against
Plaintiff, seeking to revoke Plaintiff's Nursing License
and related Nurse Anesthetist Certificate. (Id.)
Hearings were held by Administrative Law Judge
(“ALJ”) Samuel D. Reyes on the matter from
February 27, 2017 through March 1, 2017. (Id. ¶
25.) On April 28, 2017, ALJ Reyes issued a Proposed Decision
and ordered that Plaintiff's License and Certificate be
revoked. (Id. ¶ 29.) Then, ALJ Reyes stayed the
revocations and placed Plaintiff on probation for five years.
(Id.) On September 20, 2017, Defendant issued a
Final Decision and Order. (Id. ¶ 32.) Defendant
then ordered Plaintiff to undergo a five-year probation of
his Nursing License and Certificate. (Id.) On
November 3, 2017, Plaintiff filed for a Writ of Mandate in
San Diego Superior Court against Defendant, and the San Diego
Superior Court found against Plaintiff. (Id. ¶
probationary terms included submitting to drug tests and
samples, appearing in-person at interviews, obtaining prior
approval before commencing or continuing any employment as a
nurse, and prohibiting Plaintiff from consuming alcohol.
(Doc. No. 47 at 9.)
then filed a Petition for Writ of Mandamus in this Court.
(Doc. No. 1.) Plaintiff alleges that Defendant's actions
exceeded the probationary terms and worsened since the Final
Decision and Order. (Doc. No. 47 at 9.)
initiated this action by filing a Petition for Writ of
Mandamus on August 30, 2018. (Doc. No. 1.) On March 7, 2019,
the Court dismissed Plaintiff's Writ of Mandamus and
granted Plaintiff leave to amend, including leave to change
his writ into a complaint. (Doc. No. 17.) Plaintiff filed a
First Amended Complaint on April 2, 2019. (Doc. No. 28.)
Defendant filed a motion to dismiss the First Amended
Complaint on April 19, 2019. (Doc. No. 31.) With leave of the
Court, Plaintiff filed a Second Amended Complaint on May 10,
2019, and then a Third Amended Complaint on July 19, 2019.
(Doc. Nos. 38, 43.) Plaintiff's Third Amended Complaint
(“TAC”) states only two causes of action against
Defendant for: (1) discrimination under the ADA, and (2)
retaliation under the ADA. (Doc. No. 43.) All other causes of
actions are against Doe Defendants not yet named in the
litigation. Defendant moved to dismiss Plaintiff's TAC
based on the two foregoing causes of action. (Doc. No. 45.)
Plaintiff opposed the motion, and Defendant responded. (Doc.
Nos. 47-48.) The Court held a hearing on Defendant's
motion to dismiss on November 14, 2019. Then on December 9,
2019, Plaintiff filed a motion for preliminary injunction.
(Doc. No. 57.) On December 10, 2019, Plaintiff filed an ex
parte motion for an order to shorten time. (Doc. No. 59.)
This order follows.
12(b)(6) motion to dismiss tests a complaint's legal
sufficiency. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6). The Court
must accept the complaint's allegations as true and
construe all reasonable inferences in favor of the nonmoving
party but is not required to accept “legal
conclusions” as true. Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556
U.S. 662, 664 (2009); Cahill v. Liberty Mut. Ins.
Co., 80 F.3d 336, 337-38 (9th Cir. 1996). To avoid a
dismissal at this stage, a complaint must plead “enough
facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
544, 570 (2007); Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2) (stating a party's
pleading must contain “a short and plain statement of
the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to
this deference, the reviewing court need not accept legal
conclusions as true. See Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. It
is also improper for the court to assume “the
[plaintiff] can prove facts that [he or she] has not alleged
. . . .” Associated Gen. Contractors of Cal., Inc.
v. Cal. State Council of Carpenters, 459 U.S. 519, 526
(1983). On the other hand, “[w]hen there are
well-pleaded factual allegations, a court should assume their
veracity and then determine whether they plausibly give rise
to an entitlement to relief.” Iqbal, 556 U.S.
at 679. The court only reviews the contents of the complaint,
accepting all factual allegations as true, and drawing all
reasonable inferences in favor of the nonmoving party.
Thompson v. Davis, 295 F.3d 890, 895 (9th Cir.
Requests for Judicial Notice
ruling on a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, a court may generally
consider only allegations in the complaint, exhibits attached
to the complaint, and matters properly subject to judicial
notice. Swartz v. KMPG, LLP, 476 F.3d 756, 763 (9th
Cir. 2007). Federal Rule of Evidence 201(b) permits judicial
notice of a fact when it is “not subject to reasonable
dispute because it: (1) is generally known within the trial
court's territorial jurisdiction; or (2) can be
accurately and readily determined from sources whose accuracy
cannot reasonably be questioned.” Welk v. Beam
Suntory Imp. Co., 124 F.Supp.3d 1039, 1041-42 (S.D. Cal.
Defendant's Request for Judicial Notice
requests judicial notice of several documents filed in San
Diego County Superior Court, in addition to a decision issued
by Defendant. (Doc. No. 45-1.) Defendant's request is
unopposed. For the following reasons, the Court
GRANTS Defendant's request for judicial
Defendant requests judicial notice of Exhibit 1, which is a
California Board of Registered Nursing's Decision. The
Court notes judicial notice may be properly taken of orders
and decisions made by other administrative agencies. See
Papai v. Harbor Tug & Barge Co., 67 F.3d 203, 207,
n.5 (9th Cir. 1995), rev'd on other grounds, 520
U.S. 548 (1997) (“Judicial notice is properly taken of
orders and decisions made by other courts and administrative
agencies.”); Oliva v. Cty. of Santa Clara, No.
5:13-CV-02927-EJD, 2014 WL 3615741, at *8 (N.D. Cal. July 22,
2014) (taking judicial notice of online records from the
California Department of Consumer Affairs, Board of
Registered Nursing). Accordingly, the Court holds that
Exhibit 1 is a proper subject for judicial notice.
Defendant asks the Court to take judicial notice of Exhibits
2-6, which are court documents from San Diego Superior Court
proceedings. Exhibit 2 is a Verified Petition for Writ of
Administrative Mandamus which is a public record subject to
judicial notice. See Simonelli v. City of
Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, No. C 13-1250 LB, 2013 WL
3815146, at *1 (N.D. Cal. July 22, 2013) (taking judicial
notice of a Petition for Writ of Administrative Mandamus).
3-5 are briefs filed in San Diego Superior Court. A court has
authority to take judicial notice that certain proceedings
occurred, but a court may not take “judicial notice of
disputed facts stated in public records.” Perdue v.
Rodney Corp., No. 13CV2712-GPC BGS, 2014 WL 3726700, at
*4 (S.D. Cal. July 25, 2014). However, a federal court may
“[take] judicial notice of a state court decision and
the briefs filed in that court to determine if an issue was
raised and decided by the state court for res judicata
purposes.” Manufactured Home Cmtys. Inc. v. City of
San Jose, 420 F.3d 1022, 1037 (9th Cir. 2005); see
also Holder v. Holder, 305 F.3d 854, 866 (9th Cir. 2002)
(taking judicial notice of a California Court of Appeal
opinion “and the briefs filed in that proceeding and in