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Hillblom v. Carey

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


June 21, 2010

TERRY HILLBLOM, SANDRA HILLBLOM, AND MICHAEL L., A MINOR, BY AND THROUGH HIS GUARDIANS AD LITEM, PLAINTIFFS,
v.
DEPUTY ROBERT CAREY COUNTY OF FRESNO; FORMER FRESNO COUNTY SHERIFF RICHARD PIERCE; FRESNO COUNTY DEPUTY SHERIFF ROBERT CAREY; FRESNO COUNTY SHERIFF'S SERGEANTS KATHY CARREIRO AND E. BROUGHTON, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sandra M. Snyder United States Magistrate Judge

TERRY ORDER FOLLOWING IN and SANDRA HILLBLOM, CAMERA REVIEW OF CD RE: IA INVESTIGATION OF PERSONAL DOMESTIC MATTER RE: DEFENDANT

In summary, while conducting an in camera review of personnel files and internal investigations regarding the Defendants named in this law suit, it became apparent that there was no paper copy of an investigation regarding a personal domestic matter involving Defendant Deputy Robert Carey. Plaintiff's counsel Patience Milrod and/or Sara Hedgpeth-Harris related their knowledge of the incident during the meet-and- confer held in this Judge's chambers on January 27, 2010. Directing Defendants' counsel, Michael R. Linden, to make further inquiry of the Sheriff's Department, a brief email from Attorney Linden to Judicial Assistant Frances Robles explained that "...the paper (hard) copy of the file no longer exists, but documents are saved on CD." On February 1, 2010 the CD was delivered to chambers.

The delay in reviewing the CD was due, in part, to the difficulty the Court had in finding a computer program to accommodate the reading of the contents of the CD. That review has now been completed, the undersigned having read each and every document contained on the CD regarding this domestic dispute. The portions of the investigation deemed discoverable have been copied from the CD and will be mailed directly to all counsel. The contents of the CD determined not to be discoverable are the detailed and somewhat lengthy interviews of the minor victim, his minor siblings, wife of Detective Carey and the victim's mother, and Deputy Carey's testimony of the incident. The now over eight year old details of the domestic incident in which the 16-year old sustained a cut lip arguably are not determined to be relevant for the purpose of establishing a Monell claim. See Monell v. Dept. of Soc. Serv., 436 U.S. 658, 691 (1978). That the internal investigation resulted in a finding that the allegation of a violation of the law was sustained (California Penal Code § 273d (a)) as well as a violation of policy and procedure section 600.I.VV - General Behavior is sufficient.

The production of the documents as herein set forth are ORDERED protected pursuant to the letter and spirit of the Fifth Stipulated Protective Order (Doc. 82).

Counsel for Defendants are DIRECTED to arrange with Judicial assistant Frances Robles (499-5690) to retrieve the CD from the undersigned's chambers as soon as possible or certainly within ten (10) days for the date of service of this order.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20100621

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