The opinion of the court was delivered by: Kendall J. Newman United States Magistrate Judge
Plaintiff is a Solano County Jail detainee, who proceeds without counsel, in this civil rights action against defendants Jaksch, Jensen, and Cheatham. Plaintiff contends that defendants, all Vallejo Police Officers, violated plaintiff's Eighth Amendment rights when they allegedly used excessive force against plaintiff, and denied him medical care, pursuant to plaintiff's March 17, 2012 arrest.
Pending before the court is the following discovery dispute, pursuant to which plaintiff seeks an order of this court requiring defendants to answer plaintiff's pending discovery requests. (Dkt. No. 28.) Defendants filed a response. (Dkt. No. 29.)
Defendants filed an answer to plaintiff's complaint on December 7, 2012. On December 14, 2013, this court issued an order establishing a discovery deadline of April 5, 2013. On March 22, 2013, plaintiff informed the court that, due to two interim changes in his place of incarceration (plaintiff informed the court of his changes in address (Dkt. Nos. 18, 24)), plaintiff did not receive defendants' answer until mid-February 2013, and thereafter served his discovery requests on defendants on February 21, 2013. (Plaintiff states that he was able to serve only one set of interrogatories on one defendant, rather than serve interrogatories on all three defendants.) Defendants declined to respond to plaintiff's discovery requests on the ground that they were untimely, based on the undersigned's December 14, 2013 order requiring that all discovery requests be served 60 days prior to the discovery deadline (April 5, 2013), or by February 4, 2013. Defendants seek to retain the current the discovery deadline.
The court finds good cause for plaintiff's delay in propounding discovery in this action. Moreover, it is well established that, absent a compelling justification to the contrary, actions should be decided on their merits. For these reasons, the court, by this order, extends the discovery deadline herein, according sufficient time for the parties to propound additional discovery requests if so desired.
For the foregoing reasons, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:
1. Plaintiff's request to compel responses to his outstanding discovery requests (Dkt. No. 28), is granted.
2. The court's Discovery and Scheduling Order filed December 14, 2012 (Dkt. No. 17), is modified as follows:
a. The parties may conduct discovery until July 12, 2013.
b. All pretrial motions, except motions to compel discovery, shall be filed on or before October 11, 2013.
3. Defendants shall, within twenty-one (21) days after the filing date of this order, serve on plaintiff their responses to plaintiff's outstanding discovery requests.
© 1992-2013 VersusLaw ...