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Michael T. Hayes v. Corrections Corporation of America (Cca)

March 11, 2011

MICHAEL T. HAYES, PLAINTIFF,
v.
CORRECTIONS CORPORATION OF AMERICA (CCA), A TENNESSEE CORPORATION; JOHN FERGUSON, CEO, CCA; PHILLIP VALDEZ, WARDEN IDAHO CORRECTIONAL CENTER (ICC); DAN PRADO, ASSISTANT WARDEN, ICC; BRENT ARCHIBALD, ICC INVESTIGATIONS OFFICER; BRIAN DOSER, UNIT MANAGER, ICC; JUSTIN ACOSTA, CASE MANAGER, ICC; BRANDON DELANEY, SMU CASE MANAGER, ICC; JOHN/JANE DOES, MEMBERS SMUPLACEMENT COMMITTEE, ICC; STEVE GARRET, ICC MEDICAL DOCTOR; SUSAN BAJOVICH, ICC MEDICAL ADMINISTRATOR; JANET STANGER, LPN, ICC MEDICAL; SUED IN THEIR INDVIDUAL AND OFFICIAL CAPACITIES; AND THEIR SUCCESSORS IN OFFICE, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable B. Lynn Winmill Chief U. S. District Judge

ORDER REDISCOVERY MOTIONS

(Docket Nos. 21, 30, 35)

Currently pending before the Court are Plaintiffs' Motion to Compel (Dkt. 21), Plaintiff's Amended Motion to Compel (Dkt. 30), and Plaintiff's Motion for Sanctions (Dkt. 35).*fn1 Having fully reviewed the record, the Court finds that the facts and legal arguments are adequately presented. Accordingly, in the interest of avoiding further delay, and because the Court conclusively finds that the decisional process would not be significantly aided by oral argument, this matter shall be decided on the record before this Court Dist. Idaho Loc. Civ. R. 7.1.

MOTIONS TO COMPEL

In the first Motion to Compel, Plaintiff seeks discovery responses from Brent Archibald ("Archibald"). Plaintiff was not allowed to proceed with the claims against Archibald, as set forth in the Court's Initial Review Order (Dkt. 3), but was then renamed in Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint (Dkt. 7). In the Amended Motion to Compel, Plaintiff again seeks discovery responses from Archibald and also argues that the discovery responses from Defendant Phillip Valdez ("Valdez") and Brandon Delaney ("Delaney") are incomplete. As explained more fully below, the Court finds that Archibald is not a party to the instant lawsuit; therefore, he was under no obligation to respond to the discovery requests directed toward him as a party. However, Plaintiff's Amended Motion to Compel is granted to the extent that Defendants must either produce the documents the Court has identified as relevant herein or file a motion for protective order in the next thirty days indicating why the documents should not be produced.

A. All Discovery Requests Directed to Archibald as a Party are Invalid; Archibald is Not a Party to the Instant Lawsuit.

Plaintiff seeks discovery from Archibald as a party under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 26, 34, and 36. However, these rules refer to a party's obligation to respond to discovery; they do not apply to non-parties.

The Initial Review Order did not authorize Plaintiff to proceed with the claims against Archibald. Dkt. 3. Nevertheless, Plaintiff has attempted to resurrect these claims by filing an Amended Complaint asserting claims against Archibald and by challenging the United States Magistrate Judge's authority to effectively dismiss these claims.

The undersigned United States District Judge has conducted an independent review of Plaintiff's claims against Archibald. As explained further below, this review confirms the findings in the Initial Review Order: Plaintiff's allegations against Archibald fail to state a cognizable, independent constitutional claim.

1. Allegations Against Archibald

The allegations against Archibald in the initial Complaint and the Amended Complaint are substantially similar. Plaintiff alleges that he was beaten and his personal property was stolen on April 14, 2007. Plaintiff was then placed in the Segregation Management Unit ("SMU"), where he allegedly spoke with Archibald, an investigative officer, and told him the names of his assailants, asked that Archibald retrieve his stolen property, and informed Archibald that he believed the assault was recorded on the day room video cameras. Civil Rights Complaint, ¶ 11 (Dkt. 1), First Amended Civil Rights Complaint, ¶ 38 (Dkt. 7). Based on these allegations, Plaintiff asserts that Archibald violated his constitutional rights, because he took no action to punish Plaintiff's assailants, despite Plaintiff's request to charge them with robbery and aggravated assault. First Amended Civil Rights Complaint, ¶¶ 38, 52 (Dkt. 7).

2. Initial Review Order

In the Initial Review Order, the Court did not allow Plaintiff to proceed on the Eighth Amendment claims against Archibald primarily because the allegations against Archibald relate to actions (or inaction) after the April 14, 2007 beating and theft. Moreover, the Court reasoned that there is no constitutional right to have a prison assault investigated or to have another person punished or criminally prosecuted. Initial Review Order, p. 6 (Dkt. 3). The Initial Review Order further states, "[b]ecause the complaint is devoid of any factual allegations showing that Defendant Archibald participated in any decision to deny Plaintiff protective housing prior to the April 14, 2007 ...


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