Schorr v. Roberson, Civil Action No. 15-1290 (TJK)

CourtUnited States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
Writing for the CourtTIMOTHY J. KELLY, United States District Judge
Citation319 F.Supp.3d 226
Parties Matthew P. SCHORR, Plaintiff, v. Denise E. ROBERSON, et al., Defendants.
Decision Date19 July 2018
Docket NumberCivil Action No. 15-1290 (TJK)

319 F.Supp.3d 226

Matthew P. SCHORR, Plaintiff,
Denise E. ROBERSON, et al., Defendants.

Civil Action No. 15-1290 (TJK)

United States District Court, District of Columbia.

Signed July 19, 2018

319 F.Supp.3d 227

Matthew P. Schorr, Pro se.

Brian J. Field, U.S. Attorney's Office, Washington, DC, for Defendant.


TIMOTHY J. KELLY, United States District Judge

Plaintiff Matthew P. Schorr, proceeding pro se , was convicted of federal child-pornography charges in 2011. Based on his conviction, United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE"), a component of the Department of Homeland Security ("DHS"), debarred him from participating in federal contracts and other federal programs. Schorr filed this lawsuit challenging his debarment against DHS, ICE, and various public officials. He brings two claims under the Administrative Procedure Act ("APA"), 5 U.S.C. § 551 et seq. , and a Bivens claim for alleged violations of his due process and equal protection rights. See ECF No. 1 ("Compl.") ¶¶ 60-73. Shortly after Schorr filed suit, ICE terminated the debarment.

Defendants filed a Motion to Dismiss and/or for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 17), and Schorr filed a Partial Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 20) in response. The Court referred the matter to Magistrate Judge G. Michael Harvey, who issued a Report and Recommendation to grant Defendants' motion, deny Schorr's motion, and dismiss the case. ECF No. 29 ("R&R").

Schorr filed objections to Magistrate Judge Harvey's Report and Recommendation. ECF No. 33 ("Pl.'s Obj."). His objections are that Magistrate Judge Harvey (1) misapprehended Schorr's factual allegations, id. at 2-3; (2) failed to consider all of his submissions, id. at 15-18; (3) incorrectly determined that Schorr lacked standing at the time he filed suit, id. at 5-8; (4) incorrectly determined that Schorr's APA claim was mooted by ICE's termination of Schorr's debarment, id. at 9-15; and (5) incorrectly determined that Schorr failed to allege egregious government misconduct in connection with his Bivens claim,

319 F.Supp.3d 228

id. at 18-19.1 Reviewing Schorr's objections de novo , see Fed. R. Civ. P. 72(b)(3), the Court overrules the objections and adopts Magistrate Judge Harvey's Report and Recommendation in its entirety except for its conclusion that Schorr lacked standing (although the Report and Recommendation's reasoning on standing supports the conclusion that Schorr's APA claims are moot), see R&R at 7-12, and as otherwise noted below.

First, Schorr complains, Magistrate Judge Harvey failed to appreciate the supposedly extraordinary nature of his allegations. He argues that Magistrate Judge Harvey incorrectly assumed that "Defendants were[,] in fact, diligent bureaucrats," when in reality "ICE Suspension and Debarment personnel have created a debarment mill that cranks out useless and illegal debarments whose only purpose is to perpetuate the continued existence of their jobs." Pl.'s Obj. at 2. In support of this argument, Schorr cites the following allegations: that (1) "Defendants failed to check their CorrLinks account for [Schorr's] Response before they debarred [him]," id. ;2 (2) two of the Defendants received a copy of his complaint in this action shortly before terminating his debarment, Pl.'s Obj. at 2; and (3) Defendants' decision to terminate his debarment was set forth in a very short letter with no reasoning, id. at 3. These allegations, Schorr claims, give rise to the inference that these public officials ran a supposed "debarment mill," which in his view amounted to "egregious abuse of official power." Id. at 2. The Court disagrees, because the facts alleged are insufficient to make such an inference plausible. See Ashcroft v. Iqbal , 556 U.S. 662, 678, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 173 L.Ed.2d 868 (2009).

Schorr also claims that Magistrate Judge Harvey failed to take into account certain documents attached to his motion for partial summary judgment. See Pl.'s Obj. at 15-18. But Schorr is incorrect. While the attachments are not separately listed on the docket sheet, they are in fact included in the Court's electronic files. See ECF No. 20 ("Pl.'s Mot."). Magistrate Judge Harvey expressly listed the motion for partial summary judgment (which is docketed together with its attachments) among the documents he considered. See R&R at 2 n.1.

Next, Schorr objects to Magistrate Judge Harvey's recommendation that the Court dismiss his APA claims for both lack of standing and mootness. Pl.'s Obj. at 5-15. The Court finds it unnecessary to determine whether Magistrate Judge Harvey was correct that Schorr lacks standing, because the Court agrees with Magistrate Judge Harvey that Schorr's APA claims—assuming Schorr had standing to bring them in...

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