G&K Services Company v. Bill's Super Foods Inc
ORDER granting in part and denying in part 152 Plaintiff's Second Renewed and Amended Motion in Limine. Signed by Magistrate Judge Joe J. Volpe on 04/12/2013. (jak)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
G&K SERVICES CO., INC.
BILL’S SUPER FOODS, INC.
and BILL ORR
Pending is Plaintiff’s Second Renewed and Amended Motion in Limine (Doc. No. 152).
Defendants have responded.1
On August 19, 2009, United States Magistrate Judge J. Thomas Ray issued Proposed
Findings and Recommended Disposition2 that, after the parties had time to file their objections, was
adopted in its entirety by United States District Judge Susan Webber Wright.3 The court granted
summary judgment for Plaintiff, finding that Defendants breached the contract with its “admitted
failure to comply with the Service Agreement’s unambiguous ‘written notice and cure’ provision.”4
However, the court found that questions of fact remained on (1) whether the liquidated damages
provision is enforceable; (2) the average weekly invoices between the parties; and (3) whether
Defendants are joint and severally liable.5
Doc. No. 158.
Doc. No. 82.
Doc. No. 87.
Doc. No. 82 (emphasis in original).
As for Defendants’ counterclaims, the court granted summary judgment for Plaintiff as to
Defendants’ claim for “phantom charges” occurring before July 1, 2006. It denied summary
judgment on the remaining claims -- “(1) the imposition of inconsistent charges for rental items
among different stores; (2) overcharging various rental items; (3) delivering rental items that did not
fit or were otherwise defective; (4) overstocking and hiding excessive inventory; and (5) poor
quality of service.”6
Defendants’ Motion for Reconsideration was denied7 and a jury trial is scheduled to
commence on May 1, 2013, to resolve the remaining issues.
Motion in Limine 1 -- Enforcement of Service Agreement
Plaintiff assert that Defendants should be precluded from “[a]ny mention of affirmative
defenses of Bill’s to enforcement of the Service Agreement, including but not limited to substantial
performance, prior breach by G&K, or estoppel.”8 Defendants do not specifically respond to this
request other than to say that it “addressed all the items . . . in its Pre-trial Brief and Report.”9 The
Motion is GRANTED in that any attempt to relitigate the issues already resolved by the court will
not be permitted.
Doc. No. 90.
Doc. No. 153.
Doc. No. 158.
Motion in Limine 2 -- G&K Customers
Plaintiff contends that reference to former or present G&K customers should not be
permitted. Defendants did not directly respond to this issue. Based on the information before me,
any such reference would not be relevant. Accordingly, Plaintiff’s request is GRANTED.
Motion in Limine 3 -- Class Action
Plaintiff asks that Defendants be precluded from referencing the class action against G&K
and the class action settlement. Any such reference would not be relevant, so Plaintiff’s request is
Motion in Limine 4 -- Pre 2006 Ancillary Charges
Plaintiff seeks to exclude “[a]ny mention of or any evidence relating to any claims by
Defendants against G&K related to “ancillary charges” that arose between July 1, 1999, and July
1, 2006.” The request is GRANTED.
Motion in Limine 5 -- Photographs of Soiled Shirts and Mats
Plaintiff’s request that Defendants not be permitted to use photographs of soiled shirts and
mats is DENIED, since such evidence would appear to go to counterclaims that are still pending -specifically “delivering rental items that did not fit or were otherwise defective” and “poor quality
Motion in Limine 6 -- Photographs of the Places of Business of G&K or Bill’s
Plaintiff asks that Defendants not be permitted to use “photographs of the places of business
of G&K or Bill’s.” The Motion is DENIED subject their use at trial and application of the Federal
Rules of Evidence.
Motion in Limine 7 -- Evidence Relating to a Third Party Slip and Fall
Plaintiff asserts that “evidence relating to a third party slip and fall involving a G&K floor
mat should be excluded.” To the extent that Defendants are attempting to establish that the provided
equipment was defective, a passing reference to the slip-and-fall incident may be mentioned. Details
are not necessary. Since Plaintiff contends that it has no documentation regarding the specific
incident, Defendants are directed to forthwith provide Plaintiff with the documentation supporting
the reference slip-and-fall.
Motion in Limine 8 -- Newspaper Articles
Plaintiff contends that Defendants should not be allowed to present newspaper articles
talking about Bill’s. The motions is GRANTED, since newspaper articles are hearsay.10 If
Defendants believes that the articles are entitled to some exception under the Federal Rules of
Evidence, they can file a motion to reconsider.
Motion in Limine 9 -- 2011-2012 G&K Communications and Websites.
Plaintiff wants to exclude any reference to 2011-2012 G&K Communications and Websites.
Since the issues surrounding this case arose long before 2011, this evidence would be irrelevant and
the Motion is GRANTED.
Motion in Limine 10-12 -- Settlement, Privilege, Fees
Plaintiff’s request to preclude any reference to settlement, attorney client privilege, and fees
Miller v. Tony and Susan Alamo Foundation, 924 F.2d 143, 147 (8th Cir. 1991)
(holding that newspaper articles are “rank hearsay”).
Motion in Limine 13 -- Objectionable Deposition Testimony
Reference to objected-to deposition testimony must be presented to me before hand, outside
the hearing of the jury.
Motion in Limine 14 -- Exhibits
As for tendering and using exhibits, the parties are expected to follow the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure, the Federal Rules of Evidence, and the Local Rules for the Eastern District of
Motion in Limine 15 -- Financial Status
Plaintiff asserts that any reference to its financial status is irrelevant. The Motion is
GRANTED at this time, since Defendant did not respond.
Motion in Limine 16 – Golden Rule
Plaintiff’s request to bar counsel from requesting the jury to “do unto others . . .” is
Motion in Limine 17 -- Corporate Representative
Plaintiff’s request that Defendants not be permitted to referencing the presence, or lack
thereof, of a corporate representative is GRANTED.
Motion in Limine 16- Sending a Message
Plaintiff’s request that Defendants be precluded from asking the jury to “send a message”
SO ORDERED this 12th day of January, 2013.
JOE J. VOLPE
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?