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Tinsley v. Henderson County Detention Center

United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Owensboro

May 19, 2017

CLYDE TINSLEY PLAINTIFF
v.
HENDERSON COUNTY DETENTION CENTER et al. DEFENDANTS

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          Joseph H. McKinley, Jr., Chief Judge.

         Plaintiff filed the instant pro se 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action alleging that Defendant D. Pennaman, a police officer, used excessive force against him in the course of his arrest. This matter is before the Court on a motion to compel discovery filed by Defendant, through counsel (DN 43). Defendant maintains that Plaintiff filed responses to his discovery requests but that the answers are unsigned and that “many of Plaintiff's responses are incomplete and/or unresponsive to the Interrogatory and/or Request made.” Plaintiff did not file a response to the motion, and the time for doing so has passed. The Court concludes that it can rule on the instant motion without the benefit of a response by Plaintiff.

         The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure authorize extremely broad discovery. Lewis v. ACB Bus. Servs., 135 F.3d 389, 402 (6th Cir. 1998); United States v. Leggett & Platt, Inc., 542 F.2d 655 (6th Cir. 1976). Therefore, Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26 is to be liberally construed in favor of allowing discovery. Dunn v. Midwestern Indem., 88 F.R.D. 191 (S.D. Ohio 1980). Rule 26 provides that “[p]arties may obtain discovery regarding any non-privileged matter that is relevant to any party's claim or defense.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(b)(1). “For good cause, the court may order discovery of any matter relevant to the subject matter involved in the action. Relevant information need not be admissible at the trial if the discovery appears reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.” Id. Under Fed.R.Civ.P. 37, “a party may move for an order compelling disclosure or discovery.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 37(a)(1). A motion to compel is authorized where a party fails to provide proper responses to interrogatories under Rule 33 or requests for production of documents under Rule 34. Fed.R.Civ.P. 37(a)(3)(B)(iii), (iv).

         Interrogatories

         Defendant's motion seeks to compel Plaintiff to respond to eight interrogatories.[1]

INTERROGATORY NO. 4: Please state the name, current address, current telephone number(s) and place(s) of employment of any person(s) who have any knowledge regarding any facts or opinions given in response to Interrogatory Nos. 2 through 3 above, and identify all documents which evidence said facts or opinions.
ANSWER: There was appx 15 witnesses that live at 601 Washington that verified these illegal abusive activities. I have been falsely imprisoned from that brutal excessive behavior since 10-8-2015 am waiting to be released on my Writ of Habeas Corpus.

         Defendant argues that if Plaintiff knows persons who may be witnesses to the alleged excessive-force incident, he must provide their names and contact information.

         Upon review, the Court agrees that Plaintiff must provide the names of any and all persons whom he claims are witnesses to the subject incident. Therefore, Defendant's motion will be granted as to Interrogatory No. 4.

INTERROGATORY NO. 8: Please give a detailed account of your movements and activities in the twenty-four (24) hours prior to your arrest on October 8, 2015.
ANSWER: I am an elderly disabled individual and I spend the 24 hrs of any day praying, getting medical attention for my back legs and just relaxing.

         Defendant argues that the answer “is not responsive to the Interrogatory asked which is relevant to Plaintiff's claims and requires a complete response from Plaintiff.” Upon review, the Court finds that the request seeks information that is reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence and that Plaintiff's answer is insufficient. The Court will grant the motion to compel with respect to this interrogatory.

INTERROGATORY NO. 13: Please state the name, current address, current telephone number(s) and place(s) of employment of each and every physician, physiatrist, psychologist, or other mental health professional who has examined or treated you during the last fifteen (15) years and provide a description of the condition which led to the examination or treatment.
ANSWER: I am now always have been of sound mind, I have never had any mental problems. God has really blessed me all of my life and I really and truly thank God.

         Defendant argues that because Plaintiff “is claiming a significant injury to his right eye, allegedly now including total loss of vision in his right eye, and extensive pain and suffering, Plaintiff's ...


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