United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Louisville Division
STEPHANIE TROUTMAN, Administratrix of the Estate of CHARLES R. TROUTMAN, Jr., Deceased, Plaintiff,
LOUISVILLE METRO DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, et al., Defendants.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
H Lindsay, Magistrate Judge United States
Stephanie Troutman (“Troutman”) has filed a
motion to compel (DN 81) the production of administrative
documents and mortality reviews from defendant Correct Care
Solutions (“CCS”). She also seeks to re-depose
defendant Kimberly Brown (“Brown”), an employee
of CCS. For the reasons stated below, the Court
GRANTS Troutman's motion to compel.
Statement of Facts
following facts are adduced from Troutman's second
amended complaint. (DN 28.) She alleges that in early
November 2015, her father, Charles Troutman Jr.
(“Troutman Jr.”), was arrested for narcotics
offenses and booked into a detention facility operated by
defendant Louisville Metro Department of Corrections
(“LMDC”). (Id. at 197.) While he was
being housed in an individual cell with barred windows
following a jail fight, Troutman Jr. attempted to suffocate
himself by wrapping a piece of gauze around his neck.
(Id.) A LMDC officer rescued Troutman Jr., the
latter stating shortly after his suicide attempt that he
“had no reason to live.” (Id.) Troutman
Jr. was cleared to return to general population three days
after his suicide attempt (although he denied having made a
suicide attempt). (Id. at 197-98.) Seven days after
his return to general population, Troutman Jr. was involved
in another fight and again sent to an individual cell with
barred windows. (Id. at 198.) Troutman Jr.'s
second suicide attempt was successful; he hanged himself by
tying his bedsheets around one of the window's bars.
(Id.) Troutman contends that defendant James Cox
(“Cox”), an employee of LMDC, violated LMDC
policies when he authorized the transfer of Troutman Jr. to
an individual cell with barred windows without first
obtaining approval from the onsite medical staff.
(Id. at 199.)
Summary of Law
Rule 26(b)(1) defines the scope of and limits on discovery.
Scope in General. Unless otherwise
limited by court order, the scope of discovery regarding any
non-privileged 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 benefit. Information within the scope of
discovery need not be admissible in evidence to be
Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(1). Additionally, “[o]n motion or
on its own, the court must limit the frequency or extent of
discovery otherwise allowed by these rules or by local rule
if it determines that:
(i) the discovery sought is unreasonably cumulative or
duplicative, or can be obtained from some other source that
is more convenient, less burdensome, or less expensive;
(ii) the party seeking discovery has had ample opportunity to
obtain the information by discovery in the action; or
(iii) the proposed discovery is outside the scope permitted
by Rule 26(b)(1).
Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(b)(2)(C). It is axiomatic that the Court
has broad discretion in determining the proper scope of
discovery. Chrysler Corp. v. Fedders Corp., 643 F.2d
1229, 1240 (6th Cir. 1981); Naartex Consulting Corp. v.
Watt, 722 F.2d 779, 788 (D.C. Cir. 1983); Hibbs v.
Marcum, 2018 WL 953347, at *2 (W.D. Ky. Feb. 20, 2018).
makes three requests with her motion to compel. First, she
requests that CCS produce “all internally conducted
mortality reviews and/or psychological autopsies” in
their possession along with the documents utilized in the
generation of them that relate to Troutman Jr. and several
other recently-deceased individuals. (DN 81, #434.) Second,
she requests that Brown, who is employed by CCS as a nurse,
reappear for her deposition after she refused to answer two
questions during her first deposition at CCS's
counsel's behest. (Id.) Finally, she seeks the
costs and fees associated with bringing her motion to compel
and re-deposing Brown. (Id.) The Court will address
each of these requests in turn.
Mortality Reviews and Underlying Documents
5, 2017, Troutman served discovery requests on CCS regarding
Troutman Jr.'s suicide along with several other suicides
that occurred both before and after his death. The two
Interrogatories at issue here, Nos. 25 and 27, are as
Interrogatory No. 25: Please produce any and
all documents in the possession of CCS that constitute
internally conducted mortality reviews and/or psychological
autopsies and any reports in which pertinent policies and
procedures involving suicide prevention and intervention were
evaluated, either by employees of CCS or by consultants hired
by CCS, with recommendations to corporate leadership and
quality control divisions to correct or amend current