United States District Court, S.D. California
ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF’S MOTION TO
Bernard G. Skomal United States Magistrate Judge.
Ruben Garcia alleges that between April 2012 and August 2013,
certain members of the prison staff at R.J. Donovan
Correctional Facility retaliated against him by charging him
with disciplinary violations, failing to process his inmate
grievances, and suspending his position on the prison’s
Mens’ Advisory Council. (ECF No. 1. at 5-18.)
Plaintiff’s First Set of Discovery
December 15, 2015, Plaintiff served Defendants with
twenty-seven Requests for Admissions, in addition to
Interrogatories and Requests for Production of Documents.
(Declaration of Christopher H. Findley in Support of
Opposition to Motion to Compel “Findley Decl.”
Ex. 1.) The Requests for Admissions asked that each Defendant
admit that they had received the proper training and were
aware of the applicable regulations governing prisoners and
correctional officers. The Requests for Admissions also asked
Defendants to authenticate the general chronos and rules
violation reports on which Plaintiff bases his claims.
Defendants responded to this discovery, and admitted they
were properly trained and familiar with the applicable
regulations and admitted the authenticity of the documents at
issue. (Findley Decl. Ex. 2.) Defendants also responded to
Plaintiff’s Interrogatory requests and Requests for
Production of Documents. (Findley Decl. Ex. 3.) This first
set of discovery is not the basis of Plaintiff’s Motion
Plaintiff’s Second Set of Discovery
March 6, 2016, Plaintiff served a second set of discovery,
which included Requests for Admissions, Requests for
Production of Documents, and Interrogatories. (Findley Decl.
Exs. 3, 4, 5, 6.) Defendants responded on April 8, 2016.
(Findley Decl. Exs. 7, 8, 9, 10.) It is this second set of
discovery that is in dispute in Plaintiff’s Motion to
Compel. All references to Interrogatories, Requests for
Production of Documents, and Requests for Admissions refer to
this second set of discovery, unless stated otherwise.
filed a Motion to Compel on April 20, 2016. (ECF No. 46.) On
April 21, 2016, the Court set forth a briefing schedule on
Plaintiff’s motion. On April 29, 2016, Plaintiff filed
a supplemental brief in support of his motion to compel. (ECF
No. 51.) Thereafter, the Court updated the briefing schedule
to allow Defendants additional time to respond. (ECF No. 52.)
Defendants filed their opposition on May 31, 2016. (ECF No.
55.) Plaintiff filed a reply on June 17, 2016, nunc pro
tunc, June 14, 2016. (ECF No. 57.)
TIMELINESS OF RESPONSES
argues that Defendants did not timely respond to his
discovery requests. (ECF No. 46 at 4.) Defendants were
required to respond to Plaintiff’s discovery within
thirty days. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 33(b)(2)(setting
forth the deadline to respond for interrogatories);
Fed.R.Civ.P. 34(b)(2)(A)(setting forth the deadline to
respond for requests for production of documents);
Fed.R.Civ.P. 36(a)(3)(setting forth the deadline to respond
for requests for admission). Moreover, the Federal Rules
allow for a three day extension when discovery is served by
mail. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 6(d).
discovery is dated March 6, 2016 (Findley Decl. Exs. 3-6) and
was served by mail. (Id. at ¶ 4.) Defendants
were required to respond thirty-three days later, by April 8,
2016. Defendants served their responses by mail on April 8,
2016. (Findley Decl. ¶ 5.) Defendants’ responses
were, therefore, timely.
FAILURE TO MEET AND CONFER
argue that Plaintiff’s Motion to Compel should be
denied because he failed to meet and confer with Defendants
to attempt to resolve the discovery disputes informally. (ECF
No. 55 at 5.) Civil Local Rule 26.1 provides, “The
court shall entertain no motion pursuant to Rules 26 through
37, Fed. R. Civ. P., unless counsel shall have previously met
and conferred concerning all disputed issues.” S.D.
Cal. Civ. R. 26.1(a). Counsel for the moving party must serve
and file a certificate of compliance with this rule when
filing a discovery motion. S.D. Cal. Civ. R. 26.1(b).
Additionally, Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37 provides
that a motion to compel discovery responses “must
include a certification that the ...