Williams v. Shumaker et al
ORDER granting 53 Motion to Dismiss; complaint dismissed without prejudice for failure to obey courts orders. Signed by Honorable Susan O. Hickey on April 11, 2018. (cnn)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
DAMONT ANDRE’ WILLIAMS
Civil No. 4:17-cv-04093
OFFICER SHUMAKER, Miller County
Detention Center, (MCDC); CORPORAL
GRIFFIE, MCDC; OFFICER NALLS, MCDC;
and MICHAEL CAGLE
Before the Court is a Motion to Dismiss filed by Defendants James Shoumaker, Byron
Griffie, Bradley Nall, and Michael Cagle. (ECF No. 53). Plaintiff has not responded. The Court
finds the matter ripe for consideration.
On October 23, 2017, Plaintiff filed this 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action pro se. (ECF No. 1).
Plaintiff filed a Supplement to his Complaint on November 21, 2017. (ECF No. 16). On or about
December 13, 2017, Defendants sent discovery requests to Plaintiff that included a request for an
executed medical authorization. Plaintiff provided partial responses to Defendants’ discovery
requests but refused to answer certain interrogatories and refused to produce a medical
authorization. After attempting to resolve the discovery dispute with Plaintiff without court
intervention, Defendants filed a Motion for order Compelling Answers to Discovery Requests.
(ECF No. 40). Plaintiff did not respond.
On February 16, 2018, the Court granted Defendants’ motion to compel and directed
Plaintiff to provide Defendants with a signed medical authorization and answers to the
interrogatories by March 2, 2018. Plaintiff was advised in the order that failure to produce the
discovery responses by the Court’s deadline could result in the dismissal of this case. (ECF No.
50, p. 2). To date, Plaintiff has not provided Defendants with any discovery responses or a signed
medical authorization as ordered by the Court.
On March 12, 2018, Defendants filed the instant Motion to Dismiss based on Plaintiff’s
failure to obey the Court’s order to produce discovery responses. (ECF No. 53). On March 13,
2018, the Court entered an order directing Plaintiff to file a response to Defendants’ motion on or
before April 3, 2018. (ECF No. 56). Plaintiff was advised in the order that failure to respond
within the required period of time would result in the dismissal of his case. To date, Plaintiff has
not responded to the Motion to Dismiss.
Although pro se pleadings are to be construed liberally, a pro se litigant is not excused
from complying with substantive and procedural law. Burgs v. Sissel, 745 F.2d 526, 528 (8th Cir.
1984). Local Rule 5.5(c)(2) states in pertinent part:
It is the duty of any party not represented by counsel to promptly notify the Clerk
and the other parties to the proceedings of any change in his or her address, to
monitor the progress of the case, and to prosecute or defend the action diligently
. . . If any communication from the Court to a pro se plaintiff is not responded to
within thirty (30) days, the case may be dismissed without prejudice. Any party
proceeding pro se shall be expected to be familiar with and follow the Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure.
Local Rule 5.5(c)(2).
Additionally, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure specifically contemplate dismissal of a
case on the grounds that the plaintiff failed to prosecute or failed to comply with orders of the
court. Fed. R. Civ. P. 41(b); Link v. Wabash R.R. Co., 370 U.S. 626, 630-31 (1962) (stating the
district court possesses the power to dismiss sua sponte under Rule 41(b)). Pursuant to Rule 41(b),
a district court has the power to dismiss an action based on “the plaintiff's failure to comply with
any court order.” Brown v. Frey, 806 F.2d 801, 803-04 (8th Cir. 1986) (emphasis added).
In the present case, Plaintiff has failed to comply with two orders of the Court. Therefore,
pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 41(b) and Local Rule 5.5(c)(2), Defendants’ Motion
to Dismiss (ECF No. 53) is GRANTED. Accordingly, Plaintiff’s Complaint (ECF No. 1) is
DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE.
IT IS SO ORDERED, this 11th day of April, 2018.
/s/ Susan O. Hickey
Susan O. Hickey
United States District Judge
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