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Soto v. Greyhound Lines

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


July 15, 2010

MARIA SOTO, ET AL., PLAINTIFFS,
v.
GREYHOUND LINES, INC., ET AL., DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Morrison C. England, Jr. United States District Judge

(consolidated and related cases)

ORDER

On July 6, 2010, the day appointed for the commencement of trial in this matter as to Plaintiff Sherman Kinard's claims, Plaintiff Kinard, who was representing himself in pro se, failed to appear at the appointed 9:00 a.m. time. The Court consequently dismissed Plaintiff Kinard's claims for failure to prosecute.

At approximately 3:32 p.m. on July 6, 2010, after his case had been dismissed as set forth above, Plaintiff Kinard filed a request (Docket No. 253) that the case be continued for a period of nine months.

Thereafter, on July 12, 2010, Kinard filed another document (Docket No. 254) with this Court purporting both to be an appeal of the dismissal rendered against him and yet another request directed to this Court that the case be "reinstated" and continued a sufficient period of time to permit Kinard to secure additional legal representation. In that document, Kinard states that he believed his trial started at 2:00 p.m. rather than 9:00 a.m. on July 6, 2010.

While Plaintiff Kinard repeatedly complains that he has not received proper notification from the Court in this matter, examination of the docket belies that assertion. A trial date of July 6, 2010 at 9:00 a.m. was first set nearly one year ago, on September 16, 2009 (Docket No. 172). By his own admission (see Docket No. 218), Plaintiff obtained a copy of the Court's Order signed April 2, 2010 (Docket No. 195) which granted the request of Kinard's former counsel to withdraw from this case, directly from the Clerk of Court on April 8, 2008. That Order unequivocally advised Plaintiff that the previously scheduled July 6, 2010 trial date remained in effect. Additionally, the Court's Final Pretrial Order of June 11, 2010 (Docket No. 238), served upon Plaintiff Kinard at the address he provided in Spokane, Washington, confirmed the date and time of trial as July 6, 2010 at 9:00 a.m. Significantly, Mr. Kinard himself agrees in his July 12, 2010 filing (Docket No. 254, p. 4) that he received a subsequent notice from the Court at that same address.

Given the foregoing, Plaintiff Kinard's assertion that he failed to receive proper notice of the trial date lacks merit. At the May 28, 2010 Mandatory Status Conference held in this matter after Plaintiff Kinard assumed the responsibility of his own representation, the Court specifically admonished Kinard that he would be held to the same standards as an attorney in adhering to the Court's guidelines and directives. He failed to do so and his case was properly dismissed. To the extent that Plaintiff Kinard's letters filed July 6, 2010 and July 12, 2010 (Docket Nos. 253 and 254) seek relief from that dismissal and additional time to prepare his case, those requests are DENIED.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20100715

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