Grissom v. White et al
ORDER denying, in part, 60 Plaintiff's Motion to Compel; denying 64 Plaintiff's Motion for Issuance of a Subpoena Duces Tecum. Signed by Magistrate Judge J. Thomas Ray on 12/24/2013. (kcs)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
PINE BLUFF DIVISION
WESLEY ELISHA GRISSOM,
LATRICIA WHITE, Kitchen Supervisor,
Delta Regional Unit, et al.
Plaintiff has filed this pro se § 1983 action alleging, among other things, that:
(1) Defendant White used excessive force against him on March 13, 2012; and (2)
Defendants Howell and Gibson knew that Defendant White had a pattern of engaging
in excessive force, but failed to take corrective action. Docs. 2 & 38. Plaintiff has
recently filed two nondispositive Motions, which the Court will address separately.
I. Plaintiff's Motion for Issuance of a Subpoena Duces Tecum
On November 15, 2013, Plaintiff filed a Motion asking the Court to issue a
subpoena directing Defendants to produce several documents. Doc. 64. A subpoena
duces tecum is issued to individuals who are not parties to a case. See Fed. R. Civ. P.
45. Plaintiff should have sought documents from Defendants by mailing them
requests for production of documents. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 34. Additionally, Plaintiff
filed his Motion four days after the November 11, 2013 discovery deadline expired.
Doc. 58. Thus, his Motion for Issuance of a Subpoena Duces Tecum is denied
because it was improper and untimely filed.
II. Plaintiff's Motion to Compel
Plaintiff has filed a Motion and several supporting documents asking the Court
to compel Defendants White, Howell, and Gibson (“ADC Defendants”) to provide
additional documents in response to two of his March 4, 2013 Requests for Production
of Documents. Docs. 60, 61, 62, & 63. The ADC Defendants have filed a Response.
Request for Production 1
Plaintiff asked the ADC Defendants to produce:
Any and all grievances, complaints, or other documents received by
prison staff Defendant Howell, Gibson, or their agents at the Delta
Regional Unit concerning the mistreatment of inmates by Defendant
White and any memorandum, investigative files, or other documents
created in response to such complaints, since March 13, 2012.
Doc. 63, Ex. B at 1 (emphasis added). The ADC Defendants objected to that request
because: (1) it sought irrelevant information; and (2) providing responsive documents
to Plaintiff would create unspecified security risks. Id.
To prevail on his corrective inaction claim, Plaintiff must prove that Defendants
Howell and Gibson were aware that Defendant White used excessive force, before
March 13, 2013, but failed to take proper corrective action. See Parrish v. Ball, 594
F.3d 993, 1001 (8th Cir. 2010); Lenz v. Wade, 490 F.3d 991, 995-996 (8th Cir. 2007).
Plaintiff is entitled to obtain documents relevant to that claim. However, his discovery
request is improper to the extent that it seeks information about events that may have
taken place after March 13, 2012. Thus, the Court will limit this discovery request to
three years before the March 13, 2012 use of force against Plaintiff.
The ADC Defendants must file, under seal and for the Court’s inspection, a
Supplemental Response to the Motion to Compel that: (1) contains any grievances
– that were found to have merit – alleging that Defendant White used excessive force
against a prisoner from March 13, 2009 to March 13, 2012; (2) includes any related
internal investigation documents; (3) explains the specific security concerns that
prevent them from producing each of those grievances and documents to Plaintiff; and
(4) clarifies whether redaction will alleviate those specific security concerns. 1
Request for Production 6
Plaintiff asked Defendants to produce: “Any logs, lists, or other documentation
reflecting grievances by Delta Regional inmates from March 12, 2012, to the date of
your response.” Doc. 63, Ex. B at 2. The Court has already made its ruling about
grievances alleging that Defendant White used excessive force. Grievances that
prisoners may have filed against Defendant White about other matters are irrelevant
In the alternative, the ADC Defendants may file an unsealed Supplemental Response
explaining that no such documents exist.
to this lawsuit. Thus, the Motion to Compel as to Request for Production 6 is denied
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED THAT:
Plaintiff's Motion for an Issuance of a Subpoena Duces Tecum (Doc. 64)
Plaintiff's Motion to Compel (Doc. 60) is DENIED, IN PART.
The ADC Defendants must file, within fourteen days of the entry of
this Order, a Supplemental Response that complies with the instructions herein.
Dated this 24th day of December, 2013.
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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