United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO COMPEL
DISCOVERY (ECF NO. 87) THIRTY (30) DAY DEADLINE
MICHAEL J. SENG UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
is a state prisoner proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis
in this civil rights action brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. The action proceeds on Plaintiff's First
Amendment free exercise and Fourteenth Amendment equal
protection claims against Defendants Smith and Carron. (ECF
the Court is Defendants' motion to compel discovery. (ECF
No. 87.) Plaintiff filed opposition. (ECF No. 88.) Defendants
replied. (ECF No. 89.) The matter is deemed submitted. Local
alleges that he was deprived of kosher meals while he was
incarcerated at California State Prisoner - Corcoran
(“CSP”). Plaintiff is a member of the House of
Yahweh, a religious faith with beliefs similar to Judaism,
and was given kosher meals for a time, but those meals were
suspended on September 17, 2011. On September 22, 2011,
Plaintiff's kosher meals were reinstated, but terminated
again on October 13, 2011. Plaintiff alleges that Defendants
Carron and Smith allowed other non-Jewish inmates to be
served kosher meals, but denied him these meals in violation
of his First and Fourteenth Amendment rights.
discovery process is subject to the overriding limitation of
good faith. Asea, Inc. v. S. Pac. Transp. Co., 669
F.2d 1242, 1246 (9th Cir.1981). “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 at the trial if the discovery appears reasonably
calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.
to Rule 37(a), a party propounding discovery may seek an
order compelling disclosure when an opposing party has failed
to respond or has provided evasive or incomplete responses.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 37(a)(3)(B). The failure to timely object to a
discovery request may be deemed a waiver of the objection.
Richmark Corp. v. Timber Falling Consultants, 959
F.2d 1468, 1473 (9th Cir. 1992).
if the responding party objects to a discovery request, the
party moving to compel bears the burden of demonstrating why
the objections are not justified. E.g., Grabek
v. Dickinson, No. CIV S-10-2892 GGH P., 2012 WL 113799,
at *1 (E.D. Cal. Jan. 13, 2012); Ellis v. Cambra,
No. 1:02-cv-05646-AWI-SMS (PC), 2008 WL 860523, at *4 (E.D.
Cal. Mar. 27, 2008). This requires the moving party to inform
the Court which discovery requests are the subject of the
motion to compel, and, for each disputed response, why the
information sought is relevant and why the responding
party's objections are not meritorious. Grabek,
2012 WL 113799, at *1; Womack v. Virga, No. CIV
S-11-1030 MCE EFB P., 2011 WL 6703958, at *3 (E.D. Cal. Dec.
Motion to Compel
August 25, 2017, Defendant Smith served a first set of
interrogatories on Plaintiff, who timely filed responses and
objections. On November 1, 2017, Defense counsel wrote to
Plaintiff outlining alleged deficiencies in his responses and
requesting supplemental responses. Plaintiff replied by
reiterating his responses, indicating he had responded fully,
and declining to provide any additional information.
now move to compel Plaintiff's further responses to
Interrogatories Nos. 1, 3, 4, and 6, on the grounds that the
responses were evasive and essentially non-responsive in that
they refer to or incorporate other documents, including the
operative complaint, rather than providing the requested
information, and they argue that if Plaintiff references
documents, he must precisely indicate the location of the
information requested. (ECF No. 87 at 5.)
Interrogatories 1, 3, 4, 6