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Manego v. Orleans Board of Trade

United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
773F.2d 1 (1985)


Facts

Towards the end of 1978 and in the beginning of 1979, Manego (plaintiff), a black male, sought to build a disco in the town of Orleans and applied for liquor and entertainment licenses from the Orleans Board of Selectmen. The site of the disco was close in proximity to a skating rink patronized primarily by children. At the time, the rink was owned by Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank (Bank) (defendant). The vice-president of the bank, David Willard (defendant) was also the general manager of the rink, as well as the president of the Orleans Board of Trade, which served as the town’s chamber of commerce. Willard and the Board of Trade vocally opposed the creation of the disco at hearings held by the Board of Selectmen. The Board of Selectmen ultimately denied Manego’s applications for liquor and entertainment licenses. Manego appealed the denial of the liquor license, which was also denied by the Orleans Board of Appeals. The Board of Appeals did, however, grant Manego a building permit. The Bank filed suit in Superior Court to challenge the issuance of the permit. However, after the Bank sold the rink to Paul Thibert in July 1979, the Bank withdrew the suit. In July 1979, Thibert, a white male, sought to obtain a new entertainment license. The rink planned to expand its operations to include roller skating and dancing programs for adults. The Board of Selectmen granted Thibert’s application. Manego subsequently brought suit in federal district court against the Board of Selectmen, the Bank, and Willard, alleging that they had conspired to deny his license applications on the basis of race. The district court dismissed Manego’s suit. Manego subsequently  brought this suit, substituting the Board of Selectmen with the Board of Trade as defendants, but retaining the Bank and Willard as defendants. This time, Manego alleged antitrust violations stemming from the defendants’ alleged conspiracy to prevent the disco from competing with the rink. Finding that the same facts formed the basis of Manego’s antitrust claim as formed the basis of his earlier civil rights action, the district court dismissed the suit under the doctrine of res judicata.

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Holding and Reasoning (Bownes, J.)

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