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Barry Louis Lamon v. Derral Adams

November 2, 2012

BARRY LOUIS LAMON,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
DERRAL ADAMS, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



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

ORDER OVERRULING PLAINTIFF'S OBJECTIONS AND CLARIFYING THE ORDER AMENDING THE SCHEDULING ORDER (DOC. 150) (Doc. 154)

I. Procedural Background

Plaintiff, Barry Louis Lamon ("Plaintiff"), a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis, filed this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and is proceeding on the Complaint, filed February 2, 2009, only on Plaintiff's claims against Defendants Baer, Valdez, Buenos, Lee, Ponce, and Purvis for excessive use of force and deliberate indifference to a threat to Plaintiff's safety in violation of the Eighth Amendment and for retaliation in violation of the First Amendment.

Originally, this case proceeded on Plaintiff's claims against Defendants Baer, Valdez, Buenos, Lee, Ponce, and Purvis for use of excessive force, deliberate indifference to a threat to Plaintiff's safety, and retaliation and against Defendants Adams, Junious, Da Viaga, and Callow for deliberate indifference to a threat to Plaintiff's safety. (Docs. 7, 8, 9.) The first Discovery and Scheduling Order issued in this case on October 27, 2009. (Doc. 17.) Therein, the discovery cut-off date was set at June 27, 2010, with September 7, 2010 set as the dispositive motion deadline. (Id.) The parties engaged in discovery, multiple discovery disputes arose, and dispositive motions were filed. (See Docs. 24, 26, 28, 31, 34, 37, 39, 40, 43, 46, 49, 55, 56, 63, 67, 74, 75, 76, 84, 90, 94, 101, 102, 103.)

A telephonic status conference ("TSC") was held on April 27, 2011. In that conference, the parties and the Court discussed the multiple pending motions and the stricter pleading standards which were ushered in by the decision of the United States Supreme Court in Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009), see Moss v. U.S. Secret Service, 572 F.3d 962, 968-69 (9th Cir. 2009). This conference was held merely as a courtesy to apprise the parties both that the case would be re-screened and, since the re-screening would likely narrow Plaintiff's claims, that judicial resources were insufficient to delve through all of the pending discovery motions to discern which would subsequently remain relevant, so the parties would be given opportunity to advise the Court as to what discovery remained necessary subsequent to the re-screening of the Complaint. An Order Following Telephonic Status Conference ("the TSC Order") issued stating that the case would be re-screened, that the parties would have opportunity to submit statements of discovery needed (including motions to compel), and that all discovery motions filed prior to the TSC were thus rendered moot. (Doc. 109.)

Subsequently, the case was re-screened ("the Re-screening Order"). (Doc. 111.) After his objections to the new screening order were overruled and reconsideration was denied, Plaintiff elected to proceed on the claims found cognizable upon re-screening. (Docs. 116, 117, 118, 121.)

Thereafter, the parties were ordered to submit statements delineating what, if any, discovery remained necessary for pursuing/defending the remaining claims. (Docs. 109, 121.) These orders did not re-open discovery, but issued with the understanding that significant discovery disputes existed premised on a primary dispute as to whether Plaintiff's responses to Defendants' Requests for Admissions ("RFAs") resulted in automatic admissions. The intent behind ordering the parties to submit statements of remaining discovery was to ascertain whether any discovery disputes remained and what, if any further discovery the parties desired to propound, limited solely to pursuit and/or defense of the remaining claims in the case which might warrant reopening discovery. All issues surrounding Defendants' RFAs were to be separately addressed.

Plaintiff filed his statement of discovery needed ("Plaintiff's Statement") on June 29, 2011. (Doc. 123.) Defendants filed their statement of discovery needed ("Defendants' Statement") on June 30, 2011. (Doc. 122.) Defendants filed their response to Plaintiff's Statement on July 8, 2011. (Doc. 125.) Plaintiff filed his corresponding reply on September 19, 2011. (Doc. 134.) Instead of filing a response to Defendants' Statement, on July 13, 2011, Plaintiff filed a document identified as his objections and motion to strike Defendants' Statement. (Doc. 127.) While Plaintiff's motion to strike Defendants' Statement was denied and his objections were disregarded, they were construed as Plaintiff's opposition/response to Defendants' Statement. (Doc. 144.) Subsequently, an order amending the scheduling order issued which found that Plaintiff's responses to Defendants' RFAs were sufficient, reopened limited discovery and extended the discovery deadline (including motions to compel) to June 1, 2012, and extended the deadline for filing pre-trial dispositive motions to September 7, 2012 ("the Amd/Sch Order"). (Doc. 150.)

II. Plaintiff's Objections & Request for Clarification

On February 2, 2012, Plaintiff filed a document entitled "Plaintiff's Objections to, and Request of Magistrate Judge Snyder to Clarify her January 18, 2012 Order Amending the Scheduling Order (Doc. 150)" ("Current Objections"), which is currently before the Court. (Doc. 154.) In this document, Plaintiff states that he feels the Amd/Sch Order made inaccurate descriptions of the nature, context, and initially stated purpose for issuing both the TSC Order (Doc. 109) and the Order Directing the Action to Proceed on First and Eighth Amendment Claims against Defendants Baer, Valdez, Buenos, Lee, Ponce, and Purvis (Doc. 121). Despite more than sufficient lapse of time, Defendants have not responded.

In Plaintiff's Current Objections, he takes umbrage with the following: (1) Plaintiff objects that none of the discovery issues which he filed prior to the re-screening of the Complaint were considered; (2) Plaintiff believed that the adequacy of his responses to the RFAs was decided verbally at the TSC and so objects to the discussion in the Amd/Sch Order regarding the prior dispute as to whether he had adequately responded to Defendants' RFAs; (3)

Plaintiff feels that the Amd/Sch Order mentions only Defendants' arguments regarding their RFAs and is "utterly silent as to [his] discovery concerns" (that Defendants stated they had served various documents on Plaintiff when in fact they had not done so); and (4) Plaintiff objects that the Amd/Sch Order did not require Defendants to file a copy of all discovery responses served on Plaintiff with the Court under seal, which he believes was also verbally decided and agreed to at the TSC.

A. Prior Discovery Motions

Plaintiff's objection that none of the discovery issues which were pending prior to the re-screening of the Complaint ...


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