United States District Court, D. Oregon, Pendleton Division
OPINION AND ORDER
PATRICIA SULLIVAN, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
plaintiff Douglas Williams, a prisoner at the Deer Ridge
Correctional Institution in Madras, Oregon, brings this civil
rights action against defendants Grant County, Sheriff Glenn
Palmer, Jackson Derosier, and Michael Alley. Defendants move
to compel plaintiff to respond to their First Set of
Interrogatories and First Request for Production. (Docket No.
68). For the following reasons, the Court GRANTS
defendants' Motion to Compel.
action concerns an apparent suicide attempt that plaintiff
made while on suicide watch as a detainee at the Grant County
Jail in September 2013, and defendants' alleged
deliberate indifference to plaintiff's mental health
represented by counsel, commenced this action on September
17, 2015. (Docket No. 1). On December 23, 2015, defendants
served their First Set of Interrogatories and First Request
for Production on plaintiff. Jagelski Decl. ¶ 2 (Docket
No. 69). Plaintiff was not required to respond immediately to
the discovery requests because the Court had stayed discovery
pending defendants' Motion to Dismiss for Failure to
State a Claim. (Docket Nos. 18 & 21). On September 12,
2016, the Court denied that Motion to Dismiss. (Docket No.
40). Because the Court had ruled on defendants' Motion,
the discovery stay was no longer in effect, and defendants on
September 13, 2016, wrote to plaintiff to request he respond
to their discovery requests within 30 days. Jagelski Decl.,
Ex. 3 (Docket No. 69-3). Plaintiff did not respond to the
discovery requests. On November 16, 2016, plaintiff's
counsel moved to withdraw (Docket No. 47), which the Court
granted on January 3, 2017 (Docket No. 54). Also on November
16, 2016, defendants moved to dismiss for lack of
prosecution, in part based on plaintiff's failure to
respond to the discovery requests. (Docket No. 45). The Court
denied defendants' Motion to Dismiss, holding,
“Defendants raise what is essentially a discovery
dispute . . . . The proper response is to appeal to the
Court's discovery dispute resolution procedures, or to
move to compel.” Op. & Order, at 4 (Docket No. 61).
April 13, 2017, defendants again wrote to plaintiff, asking
him to respond to their discovery requests. Jagelski Decl.,
Ex. 4 (Docket No. 69-4). In response, plaintiff wrote
defendants several letters in which he directed defendants to
documents that he had filed with the Court and that his
former attorney had “put together, ” stated that
he had provided defendants with copies of documents and asked
for them back, and said that he could not answer the
interrogatories because he never received them. Id.,
Ex. 5, 6, 8 (Docket Nos. 69-5, 69-6, 69-8). Defendants again
requested that plaintiff provide responsive documents (and
not the documents already filed with the Court), and provided
another copy of their interrogatories. Id., Ex. 7
& 9 (Docket No. 69-7, 69-9).
11, 2017, defendants moved to compel plaintiff to answer
their First Set of Interrogatories (Docket No. 62), which the
Court denied without prejudice on July 12, 2017, because
defendants failed to comply with Local Rule 37-1's
requirement that they provide the subject interrogatories
along with their Motion (Docket No. 67).
11, 2017, defendants deposed plaintiff. Jagelski Decl., Ex.
11 (Docket No. 69-11). There, plaintiff initially testified,
regarding defendants' requests for production, that
“I've sent you everything.” Id.,
Williams Depo., 53:7. However, plaintiff later testified that
he in fact had additional documents that he had not given
defendants, including “kite” forms and
“suicide notes.” Id., 70:13-20, 72:2.
These documents were in a box “at [plaintiff's]
house out on the streets, ” but he had “no way of
getting to [them] until [he was] out of prison.”
Id., 70:18-24. Plaintiff then stated that the
documents were in fact not at his house, but at “the
place where [he] was staying, ” and that he did not
know the address or even street name of the house.
Id., 70:22-24, 72:22-73:2. Further, plaintiff said
that he did not have contact information for one “Mr.
Martini” who would have access to the house.
August 9, 2017, defendants filed this Motion to Compel.
(Docket No. 68). Defendants include the interrogatories and
requests for production at issue. Jagelski Decl., Ex. 1 &
2 (Docket Nos. 69-1 & 69-2). Plaintiff failed to respond
to defendants' Motion to Compel by the August 23, 2017,
Fed.R.Civ.P. 37(a)(3)(B)(iii) and (iv), a party may move for
an order compelling answers to interrogatories or the
production of requested documents.
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
Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(1). “Failure to object to a
discovery request within the time permitted by the Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure, or within the time to which the
parties have agreed, constitutes a waiver of any
objection.” L.R. 26-5(a). Motions to compel ...