Mou v. City of San Jose et al

Filing 64

RESPONSE to Plaintiffs 63 Objection to Bill of Costs filed byCity of San Jose. (Burchfiel, Robert) (Filed on 4/6/2010) Modified on 4/7/2010 (gm, COURT STAFF).

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 RICHARD DOYLE, City Attorney (88625) NORA FRIMANN, Assistant City Attorney (93249) ROBERT BURCHFIEL, Sr. Deputy City Attorney (112318) Office of the City Attorney 200 East Santa Clara Street San Josť, California 95113-1905 Telephone Number: (408) 535-1900 Facsimile Number: (408) 998-3131 E-Mail Address: Attorneys for CITY OF SAN JOSE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA SAN JOSE DIVISION CHIN-LI MOU, Plaintiff(s), v. CITY OF SAN JOSE, SAN JOSE PUBLIC LIBRARY EDUCATION PARK BRANCH, and DOES, inclusive, Defendant(s). Case Number: C07-05740 JF DEFENDANT CITY OF SAN JOSE'S RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF'S OBJECTION TO BILL OF COSTS NOTICE OF COURT'S FINAL ORDER The court's records will indicate that Plaintiff, Mou was until very recently represented by the court appointed counsel of Thomas R. Hogan. Mr. Hogan, while still representing Plaintiff, received both a copy of the bill of costs filed by Defendant City of San Jose and also was sent a copy of the final court's order awarding costs taxed in the amount of $1,029.90. The issue of whether Plaintiff herself received either of these filed documents is solely an issue between her and her attorney Mr. Hogan, who properly DEFENDNAT CITY OF SAN JOSE'S RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF'S OBJECTION TO BILL OF COSTS 64550 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 received those documents in a timely and statutorily manner and who responded with no opposition. PLAINTIFF'S ALLEGED INDINGENCY Defendant City of San Jose finds no evidence submitted to the court to substantiate Plaintiff's claim of being indigent and therefore somehow relieving her of the statutory responsibility to pay for the public funds expended out of pocket by Defendant City of San Jose to defend her meritless claim. A very brief review of the Santa Clara County parcel records indicate that Ms. Mou is the current owner of a condominium located at 4141 Boneso Circle in the City of San Jose with a total assessed value of approximately a quarter of a million dollars ($246,809). Ms. Mou is not an inexperienced litigant as exampled by the complaint filed on her behalf in Santa Clara County Superior Court in 2006 (Case Number 1-06-CV-059679) concerning alleged misconduct at the Martin Luther King Library. She received a financial settlement in that matter and then proceeded to pursue a separate action which brought about this current case. All efforts were made by Defendant to minimize the amount of costs incurred by the public entity and the amount is in no way substantial and is a debt that can be fulfilled over time. One of the main issues surrounding the presumption in favor of granting costs to the prevailing party embodied in Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54(d)(1) is that Plaintiff should weigh as a factor the potential of having to pay costs of the opposing party when deciding to file a lawsuit against a Defendant. Needless to say the Summary Judgment Motion filed by Defendants in this matter indicates the number of city employees and hours consumed in responding to Ms. Mou's reckless and sometimes incoherent allegations. That substantial internal cost to Defendant public entity will never be recovered. ALLEGED MISCONDUCT BY PREVAILING PARTY DEFENDNAT CITY OF SAN JOSE'S RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF'S OBJECTION TO BILL OF COSTS 64550 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 Defendants counsel is not going to address the unsubstantial rantings of Plaintiff concerning her allegations that defense counsel engaged in "intentional lies and misrepresentation". The costs in this matter represent primarily the deposition costs for Plaintiff Mou and a number of subpoenaed records. There is no substantiation whatsoever that any of the costs taxed in this matter were "unreasonably incurred or unnecessary to the case". CONCLUSION Defendant, City of San Jose believes that Ms. Mou has untimely brought an objection to the bill of costs awarded in this matter and any lack of notice on her part should be addressed to her counsel of record at the time the cost bill was entered. Additionally, Ms. Mou has made no substantiated case for relief from this minimal cost bill due to indecency. If the court wishes to review the issue of misconduct in this case as invited by Plaintiff, Defendant, City of San Jose would argue that there is certainly a need for accountability when an individual is provided free counsel and still maintains allegations which cannot be substantiated in court. The bill of costs in this matter represents a minimal amount of accountability for the total circumstances brought into play solely by Ms. Mou's overly active imagination. For the above reasons, Defendant City of San Jose respectfully requests the court reinstate its prior order and judgment in the amount of $1,029.90. Respectfully submitted, RICHARD DOYLE, City Attorney Dated: April 6, 2010 By: ________/S/___________ ROBERT BURCHFIEL Sr. Deputy City Attorney Attorneys for CITY OF SAN JOSE DEFENDNAT CITY OF SAN JOSE'S RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF'S OBJECTION TO BILL OF COSTS 64550 0

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