This opinion will be unpublished and
may not be cited except as provided by
Minn. Stat. ß 480A.08, subd. 3 (2000).
STATE OF MINNESOTA
IN COURT OF APPEALS
Department of Medical Technology,
University of Minnesota,
Hennepin County District Court
File No. 998285
Yoseph Dalu, 1225 South 8th Street, #306, Minneapolis, MN 55404 (pro se appellant)
Mark B. Rotenberg, General Counsel, Jeffrey G. Vigil, Associate General Counsel, University of Minnesota, 360 McNamara Alumni Center, 200 Oak Street Southeast, Minneapolis, MN 55455-2006 (for respondent)
††††††††††† Considered and decided by Kalitowski, Presiding Judge, Willis, Judge, and Stoneburner, Judge.
U N P U B L I S H E D†† O P I N I O N
††††††††††† Appellant Yoseph Dalu challenges the district courtís denial of his motions to amend the complaint, to compel discovery, and for a new trial.† Appellant contends the courtís findings of fact and conclusions of law are not supported by the evidence and the court erred in failing to decide his intentional infliction of emotional distress claim separately.† We affirm.
††††††††††† To establish a prima facie case of discrimination, appellant was required to show he was a member of a protected class, he was qualified as a student, and he was dismissed under circumstances giving rise to an inference of unlawful discrimination.† See McDonnell Douglas Corp. v. Green, 411 U.S. 792, 802, 93 S. Ct. 1817, 1824 (1973); Dietrich v. Canadian Pac. Ltd., 536 N.W.2d 319, 323-24 (Minn. 1995) (indicating that Minnesota courts use the McDonnell Douglas test to analyze claims arising from the Minnesota Human Rights Act).† Here, the district court concluded appellant failed to demonstrate a prima facie case of discrimination.† In addition, the court found the University met its burden of demonstrating there was a legitimate, nondiscriminatory reason for appellantís dismissal.
In making its findings, the district court relied on evidence that showed appellant:† (1) had deficiencies and safety violations in laboratory courses; (2) was reinstated after dismissal and continued to show deficiencies in the essential functions of the program; (3) had two incidents of cheating that could have led to dismissal; and (4) received two grades of ďDĒ in laboratory courses, which ultimately led to his dismissal.† The district court had the opportunity to observe the witnesses firsthand and hear their testimony, and made detailed findings of fact regarding the deficiencies leading to appellantís dismissal.† We conclude the district courtís findings of fact were supported by the evidence and were not clearly erroneous, and the court did not err in its conclusions of law.
Appellant also claims the district court erred in failing to decide his intentional infliction of emotional distress claim separately.† A district court need not make specific findings if the record is reasonably clear, the facts are not seriously disputed, and the decision decides all disputed or material facts.† See Crowley Co. v. Metropolitan Airports Commín, 394 N.W.2d 542, 545 (Minn. App. 1986).† Because as a matter of law appellant presented insufficient evidence to support a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress, we conclude the district court did not err in failing to address the emotional distress claim separately.
Finally, appellant claims the district court abused its discretion in denying his motions for a new trial and to amend the complaint.† The district courtís decision to grant or deny a new trial will not be disturbed absent a clear abuse of discretion.† Halla Nursery, Inc. v. Baumann-Furrie & Co., 454 N.W.2d 905, 910 (Minn. 1990).† The court will grant a new trial if, inter alia, a party was deprived of a fair trial, a party committed misconduct, or the courtís decision is not justified by the evidence or is contrary to law.† Minn. R. Civ. P. 59.01.† Here, the court gave appellant considerable leeway because he was pro se and even considered testimony not given under oath or subject to cross-examination.† Nevertheless, the evidence indicated appellant was properly dismissed from the University.† Appellantís motion to amend the complaint was untimely and not supported by the evidence.† We conclude the court did not abuse its discretion in denying the motions for a new trial and to amend the complaint.