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Cobb v. Rodriguez

United States District Court, S.D. California

June 27, 2016

JOHN COBB, Plaintiff.
v.
RAMIRO RODRIGUEZ, et al., Defendants

          ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION

          Hon. Roger T. Benitez United States District Judge

         Before this Court is a Motion for Reconsideration pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b), filed by Plaintiff John Cobb. (Docket No. 86.)[1] Plaintiff asks the Court to reconsider its orders denying Plaintiffs motion to amend his Complaint for a third time (Docket No. 76) and his motion for summary judgment (Docket No. 81.) For the reasons stated below, the Motion is DENIED.

         BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff Cobb, proceeding pro se, filed a civil rights complaint on June 11, 2013. (Docket No. 1.) Plaintiff subsequently filed and served the operative Second Amended Complaint on June 5, 2015 ("SAC"). On May 9, 2016, this Court denied Plaintiffs motion for leave to file a third amended complaint. (Docket No. 76.) Plaintiff sought to add a defendant, Officer Jason Zdunich, and add claims against Zdunich and the City of San Diego based on information learned from discovery. The Court found that amendment would prejudice the named and proposed defendants, and that Plaintiff had not shown diligence in seeking to amend. Plaintiff now asks the Court to reconsider its denial.

         On May 13, 2016, this Court denied Plaintiffs motion for summary judgment. (Docket No. 81.) Plaintiff also seeks reconsideration of this denial.

         DISCUSSION

         Under Rule 60(b), a court may relieve a party from a final judgment, order, or proceeding upon a showing of mistake, newly discovered evidence, fraud, or "any other reason that justifies relief." Fed.R.Civ.P. 60(b); see Latshaw v. Trainer Wortham & Co., 452 F.3d 1097, 1103 (9th Cir. 2006) (explaining that the catch-all provision should be used sparingly as an equitable remedy to prevent manifest injustice). It appears that Plaintiff seeks to set aside the orders based on mistakes by the Court and himself.

         Motions for reconsideration "should not be granted, absent highly unusual circumstances." Antoninetti v. Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc., No. 05-cv-1660-J, 2007 WL 2456223, at *2 (S.D. Cal. Aug. 23, 2007). "A motion for reconsideration may not be used to raise arguments or present evidence for the first time when they could reasonably have been raised earlier in the litigation." Life Techs. Corp. v. Illumina, Inc., No. 11-cv-00703, 2012 WL 10933209, at *1 (S.D. Cal. June 11, 2012) (quoting Kona Enters., Inc. v. Estate of Bishop, 229 F.3d 877, 890 (9th Cir. 2000)). Moreover, motions to reconsider are not a platform to relitigate arguments and facts previously considered and rejected. See Harrison v. Sofamor/Danek Grp„ Inc., No. 94-cv-0692, 1998 WL 1166044, at *3 (S.D. Cal. Sept. 15, 1998).

         I. Denial of Plaintiffs Motion for Leave to Amend Complaint

         Plaintiff asserts numerous arguments why the Court should reconsider its denial of his motion for leave to file a third amended complaint. In sum, he argues that he had a right to file his motion to amend by the scheduling order's deadline for filing pretrial motions and the Court made a mistake in its interpretation of the scheduling order's deadlines; that he could not have amended his complaint before the completion of discovery; and that Defendants cannot claim prejudice by the proposed amendment because they attempted to delay the deposition of proposed defendant Zdunich and "should have been prepared that Plaintiff would make an amended complaint." (Docket No. 86.)[2]

         The Court considers and rejects Plaintiffs arguments. To the extent Plaintiff argues that the Court rejected his motion based on untimeliness under the scheduling order, he misreads the Court's order. The Court did not deny his motion based on the timeliness of its filing, but rather because it was filed so late in the litigation and granting the motion would necessitate the reopening of discovery, thus further delaying the case. (Docket No. 76.) Second, the Court already considered Plaintiffs arguments about newly discovered evidence and potential prejudice to Defendants. Plaintiffs current arguments offer nothing new and have not shown that the Court's denial was in error. His contention that Defendants acted in bad faith by delaying the deposition of Officer Zdunich could have been raised in his earlier motion. "A motion for reconsideration cannot be granted merely because Plaintiff is unhappy with the judgment, frustrated by the Court's application of the facts to binding precedent or because he disagrees with the ultimate decision." See Moses v. White, No. 13-cv-26105 2013 WL 6795623, at *1 (S.D. Cal. Dec. 20, 2013). Therefore, Plaintiffs Motion to reconsider the Court's denial of his request to file a third amended complaint is DENIED.

         II. Denial of Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment

         Plaintiff argues that the Court should reconsider its denial of his motion for summary judgment because Plaintiff "made an error" in how he described Defendant Rodriguez's description of their encounter, and "his error ... enables the District Court to rule that Plaintiff was unreasonably detained by Defendants." (Docket No. 86-2 at 10, 11.) The Court again rejects Plaintiffs argument. Plaintiff could have raised this issue in his motion for summary judgment. Assuming the Court can grant relief for mistake by a party, but see Buford v. Wasco State Prison, No. 01-cv-05192, 2007 WL 2750684, at *1 (E.D. Cal. Sept. 19, 2007) (finding that plaintiffs own error is not grounds to set aside an order under Rule 60), Plaintiff has neither explained nor presented any legal authority to ...


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