Heggemeier v. Caldwell Cnty., TX, No. 15-50485 (5th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff, a white male, filed suit against the County and others, contending that a Hispanic voting bloc on the Caldwell County Commissioners Court eliminated his position due to his race, age, and age-related protected activities, violating his due-process rights along the way. The district court granted defendants' motion to dismiss the 42 U.S.C. 1983 claim and their subsequent motion for summary judgment on claims for race discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq., and retaliation under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), 29 U.S.C. 623(d). The district court declined to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over plaintiff's state-law whistleblower claim. The court affirmed the dismissal of the Title VII claim because plaintiff failed to show he was treated less favorably than a similarly situated comparator; affirmed as to the ADEA claim where the period of twenty-one months between plaintiff’s complaint and his termination is simply too substantial a gap to support an inference of causation; and affirmed as to the section 1983 claim where the complaint failed to properly state a cause of action. Finally, the court concluded that the district court acted within its discretion to dismiss the pendant state-law claims.