United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER DISCHARGING ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE WHY DEFENDANT
MEYER KOMAR FAILED TO APPEAR AT SCHEDULING CONFERENCE (ECF
September 11, 2019, this Court issued an order to show cause
requiring Defendant Meyer Komar to show cause for failing to
comply with the Court's order requiring all parties to
appear at the mandatory scheduling conference. (ECF No. 12.)
On September 16, 2019, Mr. Komar filed his response. (ECF No.
13.) As discussed below, the Court finds that Mr. Komar has
failed to provide an adequate justification for his failure
to appear. Nonetheless, the Court declines to impose
sanctions at this time, and discharges the order to show
cause, but cautions Mr. Komar that any future violations of
the Court's orders, failures to appear at court hearings,
or failures to otherwise comply with Court procedures and
rules, will be met with less tolerance and could result in
the imposition of sanctions.
5, 2019, Plaintiff, Project Sentinel, filed this action
against Defendants, Meyer Komar, Jeanette Komar, and Sarah
Komar. (ECF No. 1.) In the Order Setting Mandatory Scheduling
Conference, entered on May 21, 2019, the Court set an initial
scheduling conference for September 10, 2019, at 10:00 a.m.
(ECF No. 3-1.) The parties were instructed that attendance at
the scheduling conference was mandatory. (Id. at 2
(“Attendance at the Scheduling Conference is
mandatory for all parties. Parties may appear by
their counsel, if represented. If a party is not represented
by counsel, they must appear personally at the Scheduling
Conference.”).) The parties were also advised:
“Should counsel or a party appearing pro se
fail to appear at the Mandatory Scheduling Conference . . .
contempt sanctions, including monetary sanctions, dismissal,
default, or other appropriate judgment, may be imposed and/or
ordered.” (Id. at 7.) The parties were also
provided instructions on how to attend the scheduling
conference. (Id. at 1, 2.)
2, 2019, summons for Defendants were returned executed. (ECF
Nos. 4, 5, 6.) The return of service for Mr. Komar
demonstrates that he was personally served with the summons,
complaint, and the Court's Order Setting Mandatory
Scheduling Conference. (ECF No. 4.) On May 8, 2019, Mr. Komar
filed an answer on his own behalf, and is proceeding pro
se. (ECF No. 8.)
September 3, 2019, Plaintiff filed a Scheduling Report. (ECF
No. 10.) Plaintiff represented in the Scheduling Report that
its counsel has been in touch with Mr. Komar and received
preliminary input from him, which Plaintiff included in the
Scheduling Report. (ECF No. 10.) Plaintiff indicated that
after this initial exchange with Mr. Komar, Plaintiff's
counsel made subsequent attempts to contact Mr. Komar but
that such attempts were unsuccessful. (Id.)
Court held the initial scheduling conference in this case on
September 10, 2019, at 10:00 a.m. Plaintiff appeared
telephonically through its counsel, Liza Cristol-Deman. Mr.
Komar failed to appear for the hearing and did not file a
request for a continuance or otherwise notify the Court that
he would not be able to appear. The Court therefore issued an
order to show cause requiring Mr. Komar to show cause why
sanctions, up to and including entry of judgment against him,
should not be issued for his failure to comply with the
Court's order requiring him to appear at the mandatory
scheduling conference. (ECF No. 12.)
September 16, 2019, Mr. Komar filed a response to the
Court's order to show cause. (ECF No. 13.) In this
response, Mr. Komar states:
I have previously informed the Project Sentinal attorney
Liza-Cristal in writing that my family & I have NEVER
refused to rent to a person of color. We currently have
person of color as a tenant in one of our rentals.
Any attempt by Project Sentinal to prove that we are guilty
of discrimination has not merit and can not be proven as
there is no valid evidence supporting their charges.
I had informed Liza-Cristal in writing that I would not
appear at any mediation meeting or conference or answer any
future request for information but was prepared to appear and
defend my family at trial if Project Sentinal moved the case
to that level.
I did not appear at the September 10th, 2019 scheduling
conference for the above stated reason that I am innocent of
any and all of the Project Sentinal charges and did not wish
to be subjected to further harrasment. If project Sentinal
plans to move their case against me to trial I will represent
and defend my family at that time.
(ECF No. 13.)
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provide that the Rules are
to be “construed, administered, and employed by the
court and the parties to secure the just, speedy, and
inexpensive determination of” an action. Fed.R.Civ.P.
1. To effectuate this purpose, the Rules provide for
sanctions against ...