United States District Court, C.D. California
Jasmin Rangel, et al.
Chino Valley Unified School District, et al.
Present: Honorable KENLY KIYA KATO, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE
Order Granting Plaintiff's Motion to Compel [Dkt. 84]
8, 2017, Plaintiff Jasmin Rangel filed a Motion to Compel
seeking production of documents allegedly responsive to
Request for Production Nos. 6 and 8 that were withheld by
Defendant Chino Valley Unified School District (“Motion
to Compel”). ECF Docket No. (“Dkt.”) 84.
For the reasons set forth below, Plaintiff's Motion to
Compel is GRANTED.
22, 2015, Plaintiffs Jasmin Rangel, Luis Rodriguez, I.R., a
minor by and through his guardians ad litem Jasmin Rangel and
Luis Rodriguez, Dominique Dixon, and S.I., a minor by and
through his guardian ad litem Dominique Dixon (collectively,
“Plaintiffs”) filed a Complaint against
Defendants Chino Valley Unified School District (the
“District”), teacher's aide Haymattie
Mohamed, teacher Adrienne Smith, principal Luke Hackney, and
Superintendent of the District Wayne Joseph (collectively,
“Defendants”) alleging I.R. and S.I. were
physically and verbally abused by their teachers at Country
Springs Elementary School on December 6, 2013 and June 2,
2014. Dkt. 1, Compl.
February 24, 2016, Plaintiff served Requests for Production
of Documents, Set One, on the District. Dkt. 84-6,
Declaration of Anne McWilliams (“McWilliams
Decl.”), ¶ 7, Ex. 5. On April 11, 2016, the
District served responses to Plaintiff Rangel's Requests
for Production. Id. ¶ 7. On January 17, 2017,
the District served supplemental responses to the Requests
for Production and produced further documents. Id.
at Ex. 4. Defendant withheld fourteen pages from production
and produced a “privilege log” describing the
documents. Id. ¶ 13; Dkt. 84-1, Declaration of
Zoya Yarnykh (“Yarnykh Decl.”), ¶ 2, Ex. A.
In an email to Plaintiffs' counsel accompanying the
January 17, 2017 production, Defendants' counsel
explained the documents were withheld because “they
encompass matters unrelated to either of the two incidents
alleged by Plaintiffs and cover a time that is more than 6
years before the single incidents involving Minor I.R. and
Minor S.I.” McWilliams Decl., ¶ 15.
3, 2017, Plaintiffs' counsel sent Defendants' counsel
a letter requesting to meet and confer regarding alleged
deficiencies in the District's responses to the Requests
for Production. Id. at Ex. 6. On May 11, 2017,
Defendants' counsel responded to Plaintiffs'
counsel's May 3, 2017 letter objecting to production of
the documents because the Requests for Production seek
documents encompassing a time period beginning six years
before the incident with I.R. and continuing until three
years after the incident. Id. at Ex. 7. On May 19,
2017, counsel met and conferred telephonically. Id.
8, 2017, Plaintiff Rangel filed the instant Motion to Compel
and Joint Stipulation pursuant to Local Rule 37-2. Dkt. 84.
On June 19, 2017, Plaintiff Rangel filed a supplemental brief
in support of the Motion to Compel. Dkts. 85, 86. The matter
thus stands submitted.
Rule of Civil Procedure 26(b) provides that parties may
obtain discovery regarding:
any nonprivileged matter that is relevant to any party's
claim or defense and proportional to the needs of the case,
considering the importance of the issues at stake in the
action, the amount in controversy, the parties' relative
access to relevant information, the parties' resources,
the importance of the discovery in resolving the issues, and
whether the burden or expense of the proposed discovery
outweighs its likely benefit.
Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(1). Relevant information “need
not be admissible in evidence to be discoverable.”
Id. A court “must limit the frequency or
extent of discovery otherwise allowed” if “(i)
the discovery sought is unreasonably cumulative or
duplicative, or can be obtained from some other source that
is more convenient, less burdensome, or less expensive; (ii)
the party seeking discovery has had ample opportunity to
obtain the information by discovery in the action; or (iii)
the proposed discovery is outside the scope permitted by Rule
26(b)(1).” Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(b)(2)(C). Therefore,
“[r]elevancy alone is no longer sufficient to obtain
discovery, the discovery requested must also be proportional
to the needs of the case.” Centeno v. City of
Fresno, No. 1:16-CV-653 DAD SAB, 2016 WL 7491634, at *4
(E.D. Cal. Dec. 29, 2016) (citing In re Bard IVC Filters
Prod. Liab. Litig., 317 F.R.D. 562, 564 (D. Ariz.
response to Requests for Production “must either state
that inspection and related activities will be permitted as
requested or state with specificity the grounds for objecting
to the request, including the reasons.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
34(b)(2)(B). “A party seeking discovery may move for an
order compelling an answer, . . . production, or
inspection.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 37(a)(3)(B)(iii), (iv).
“[A]n evasive or incomplete disclosure, answer, or
response must be treated as a failure to disclose, answer or
respond.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 37(a)(4).