United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO COMPEL ECF NO. 93
STANLEY A. BOONE, Magistrate Judge.
On February 2, 2015, Defendants Jerry Dyer and John Conlee ("City Defendants") filed a Motion to Compel Plaintiff to Answer Deposition Questions; and Motion to Extend Expert Discovery Deadline; and Request for Sanctions. (ECF No. 93.) City Defendants filed a Statement re Discovery Disagreement on March 4, 2015. (ECF No. 102.) Plaintiff Paul Weldon ("Plaintiff") did not participate in drafting the Statement re Discovery Disagreement.
The Court finds it appropriate for Defendants' motion to be submitted upon the records and briefs on file without oral argument. See Local Rule 230(g). Accordingly, the Court vacates the hearing on Defendants' motion set for March 11, 2015. For the reasons set forth below, the Court grants Defendants' motion.
The operative complaint in this matter is the Fourth Amended Complaint filed on September 2, 2014. (ECF No. 77.) Plaintiff's claims arise from an incident on April 18, 2011. Plaintiff alleges that he was pulled over while driving a van by Defendant John Conlee. Plaintiff alleges that Conlee was impersonating a Fresno Police Officer because he never took a proper oath of office. Plaintiff further alleges that Conlee was rude to Plaintiff and eventually ordered Plaintiff out of the van and assaulted Plaintiff by twisting his arms behind his back to handcuff him. Plaintiff further alleges that, although the van was properly registered, Conlee ripped the registration tab off of the license plate and called Econo Towing Company to tow the car away. The towing truck was operated by Defendant Beryle Dodson. Econo Towing Company is owned by Defendants Marty Kodman and Robert Kodman.
The Court has construed Plaintiff's Fourth Amended Complaint as asserting claims under Section 1983 for the use of excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment, unreasonable search and seizure in violation of the Fourth Amendment, failure to provide sufficient notice regarding a seizure in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment, and for conversion.
LEGAL STANDARDS FOR MOTIONS TO COMPEL
Motions to compel are governed by Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37, which states, in pertinent part:
(a) Motion for an Order Compelling Disclosure or Discovery.
(1) In General. On notice to other parties and all affected persons, a party may move for an order compelling disclosure or discovery. The motion must include a certification that the movant has in good faith conferred or attempted to confer with the person or party failing to make disclosure or discovery in an effort to obtain it without court action.
(3) Specific Motions.
(B) To Compel a Discovery Response. A party seeking discovery may move for an order compelling an answer, designation, production, or inspection. This motion may be made if:
(i) a deponent fails to answer a question asked under Rule 30 or 31;
(4) Evasive or Incomplete Disclosure, Answer, or Response. For purposes of this subdivision (a), an evasive or incomplete disclosure, answer, or response must be treated as a failure to disclose, answer, or respond.
Moreover, Rule 37 imposes sanctions against the party whose conduct necessitated a motion to compel:
(5) Payment of Expenses; Protective Orders.
(A) If the Motion Is Granted (or Disclosure or Discovery Is Provided After Filing). If the motion is granted-or if the disclosure or requested discovery is provided after the motion was filed-the court must, after giving an opportunity to be heard, require the party or deponent whose conduct necessitated the motion, the party or attorney advising that conduct, or both to pay the movant's reasonable expenses ...