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Gomez v. City of Los Angeles

United States District Court, C.D. California

January 9, 2020

KARLA GOMEZ; ZENAIDA GOMEZ; ANDY HERRERA; Z.G., a minor, by and through his Guardian Ad Litem KARLA GOMEZ; Y.B., a minor by and through her Guardian Ad Litem ZENAIDA GOMEZ; E.B., a minor, by and through her Guardian Ad Litem ZENAIDA GOMEZ; Plaintiff,
v.
CITY OF LOS ANGELES; MARIO ARIDE, individually and in his official capacity as a PEACE OFFICER of the LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT; KATHRYN SAIN, individually and in her official capacity as a PEACE OFFICER of the LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT; KEVIN GUERRERO, individually and in his official capacity as a PEACE OFFICER of the LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT; JAMES MANKEY, individually and in his official capacity as a PEACE OFFICER of the LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT; OFFICER JONES, individually and in his official capacity as a PEACE OFFICER of the LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT; OFFICER VACA, individually and in his official capacity as a PEACE OFFICER of the LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT; OFFICER JAMES, individually and in his official capacity as a PEACE OFFICER of the LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT; DOES 1 through 50, inclusive, Defendants.

          PROTECTIVE ORDER [1]

          GAIL J. STANDISH UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         1. A. PURPOSES AND LIMITATIONS

         Discovery in this action is likely to involve production of confidential, proprietary or private information for which special protection from public disclosure and from use for any purpose other than prosecuting this litigation may be warranted. Accordingly, the parties stipulated to the entry of a Protective Order governing the handling of certain information. The parties acknowledged that this Order does not confer blanket protections on all disclosures or responses to discovery and that the protection it affords from public disclosure and use extends only to the limited information or items that are entitled to confidential treatment under the applicable legal principles.

         B. GOOD CAUSE STATEMENT

         This action is likely to involve confidential information contained in police reports and audio/video recordings, and photographs. Such confidential and proprietary materials and information consist of, among other things: police investigative reports, body-worn video, digital in-car video, audio recordings, photographs of police officers, and city attorney work product which may be protected from disclosure pursuant to certain state or federal statutes, court rules, case decisions, or common law. Accordingly, to expedite the flow of information, to facilitate the prompt resolution of disputes over confidentiality of discovery materials, to adequately protect information the parties are entitled to keep confidential, to ensure that the parties are permitted reasonable necessary uses of such material in preparation for and in the conduct of trial, to address their handling at the end of the litigation, and serve the ends of justice, a protective order for such information is justified in this matter. Information may not be designated as confidential for tactical reasons and may only be so designated if the designating party has a good faith belief that it has been maintained in a confidential, non-public manner, and there is good cause why it should not be part of the public record of this case.

         C. ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF PROCEDURE FOR FILING UNDER SEAL

         As set forth in Section 12.3, below, this Protective Order does not entitle the Parties to file confidential information under seal; Local Civil Rule 79-5 sets forth the procedures that must be followed and the standards that will be applied when a party seeks permission from the court to file material under seal.

         There is a strong presumption that the public has a right of access to judicial proceedings and records in civil cases. In connection with non-dispositive motions, good cause must be shown to support a filing under seal. See Kamakana v. City and County of Honolulu, 447 F.3d 1172, 1176 (9th Cir. 2006), Phillips v. Gen. Motors Corp., 307 F.3d 1206, 1210-11 (9th Cir. 2002), Makar-Welbon v. Sony Electrics, Inc., 187 F.R.D. 576, 577 (E.D. Wis. 1999) (even stipulated protective orders require good cause showing), and a specific showing of good cause or compelling reasons with proper evidentiary support and legal justification, must be made with respect to Protected Material that a party seeks to file under seal. The parties' mere designation of Disclosure or Discovery Material as CONFIDENTIAL does not- without the submission of competent evidence by declaration, establishing that the material sought to be filed under seal qualifies as confidential, privileged, or otherwise protectable-constitute good cause.

         Further, if a party requests sealing related to a dispositive motion or trial, then compelling reasons, not only good cause, for the sealing must be shown, and the relief sought shall be narrowly tailored to serve the specific interest to be protected. See Pintos v. Pacific Creditors Ass'n, 605 F.3d 665, 677-79 (9th Cir. 2010). For each item or type of information, document, or thing sought to be filed or introduced under seal in connection with a dispositive motion or trial, the party seeking protection must articulate compelling reasons, supported by specific facts and legal justification, for the requested sealing order. Again, competent evidence supporting the application to file documents under seal must be provided by declaration.

         Any document that is not confidential, privileged, or otherwise protectable in its entirety will not be filed under seal if the confidential portions can be redacted. If documents can be redacted, then a redacted version for public viewing, omitting only the confidential, privileged, or otherwise protectable portions of the document, shall be filed. Any application that seeks to file documents under seal in their entirety should include an explanation of why redaction is not feasible.

         2. DEFINITIONS

         2.1 Action: This pending lawsuit: Karla Gomez, et al. v. City of Los Angeles, et al., Case No. 2:19-cv-04718 PA (GJSx).

         2.2 Challenging Party: a Party or Non-Party that challenges the designation of information or items under this Order.

         2.3 “CONFIDENTIAL” Information or Items: information (regardless of how it is generated, stored or maintained) or tangible things that qualify for protection under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26(c), and as specified above in the Good Cause Statement. This also includes (1) any information copied or extracted from the Confidential information; (2) all copies, excerpts, summaries or compilations of Confidential information; and (3) any testimony, conversations, or presentations that might reveal Confidential information.

         2.4 Counsel: Outside Counsel of Record and House Counsel (as well as their support staff).

         2.5 Designating Party: a Party or Non-Party that designates information or items that it produces in disclosures or in responses to discovery as “CONFIDENTIAL.”

         2.6 Disclosure or Discovery Material: all items or information, regardless of the medium or manner in which it is generated, stored, or maintained (including, among other things, testimony, transcripts, and tangible things), that are produced or generated in disclosures or responses to discovery in this matter.

         2.7 Expert: a person with specialized knowledge or experience in a matter pertinent to the litigation who has been retained by a Party or its counsel to serve as an expert witness or as a consultant in this Action.

         2.8 House Counsel: attorneys who are employees of a party to this Action. House Counsel does not include Outside Counsel of Record or any other outside counsel.

         2.9 Non-Party: any natural person, partnership, corporation, association or other legal entity not named as a Party to this action.

         2.10 Outside Counsel of Record: attorneys who are not employees of a party to this Action but are retained to represent or advise a party to this Action and have appeared in this Action on behalf of that party or are affiliated with a law firm that has appeared on behalf of that party, and includes support staff.

         2.11 Party: any party to this Action, including all of its officers, directors, employees, consultants, retained experts, and Outside Counsel of Record (and their support staffs).

         2.12 Producing Party: a Party or Non-Party that produces Disclosure or Discovery Material in this Action.

         2.13 Professional Vendors: persons or entities that provide litigation support services (e.g., photocopying, videotaping, translating, preparing exhibits or demonstrations, and organizing, storing, or retrieving data in any form or medium) and their employees and subcontractors.

         2.14 Protected Material: any Disclosure or Discovery Material that is designated as “CONFIDENTIAL.”

         2.15 Receiving Party: a Party that receives Disclosure or Discovery Material from a Producing Party.

         3. SCOPE

         The protections conferred by this Stipulation and Order cover not only Protected Material (as defined above), but also (1) any information copied or extracted from Protected Material; (2) all copies, excerpts, summaries, or compilations of Protected Material; and (3) any testimony, conversations, ...


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