Gopher Media LLC. v. Spain et al
ORDER denying Motion to Vacate or Set Aside Portions of Magistrate Judge's Discovery Order (Doc. no. 50 ). Signed by Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo on 11/18/2020. (jmr)
Case 3:19-cv-02280-CAB-KSC Document 60 Filed 11/18/20 PageID.803 Page 1 of 2
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
GOPHER MEDIA LLC,
Case No.: 19-cv-2280-CAB-KSC
ORDER DENYING MOTION TO
VACATE OR SET ASIDE
PORTIONS OF MAGISTRATE
JUDGE’S DISCOVERY ORDER
PHILLIP SPAIN and STEVEN
[Doc. No. 50]
On August 27, 2020, Magistrate Judge Karen Crawford issued an order on a joint
motion for determination of a discovery dispute concerning electronically stored
information (“ESI”). [Doc. No. 36.] In the order, Judge Crawford ordered Plaintiff to
produce cell phones, laptops, tablets, and memory storage devices in use by Plaintiff’s chief
executive officer, Ajay Thakore, for forensic examination. [Id. at 8.] On September 25,
2020, Plaintiff moved before Judge Crawford for reconsideration of her order that Plaintiff
produce Mr. Thakore’s devices. [Doc. No. 42.] Judge Crawford denied Plaintiff’s motion
for reconsideration. [Doc. No. 48.] Plaintiff now objects to Judge Crawford’s order for
Plaintiff to produce Mr. Thakore’s devices and moves for that aspect of Judge Crawford’s
order to be vacated or set aside. [Doc. No. 50.]
Under Rule 72(a), a party may object to a non-dispositive pretrial order of a
magistrate judge within fourteen days after service of the order. FED. R. CIV. P. 72(a).
Case 3:19-cv-02280-CAB-KSC Document 60 Filed 11/18/20 PageID.804 Page 2 of 2
District court review of magistrate judge orders on non-dispositive motions is limited. A
district judge may reconsider a magistrate judge’s ruling on a non-dispositive motion only
“where it has been shown that the magistrate judge’s order is clearly erroneous or contrary
to law.” 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A); see also FED. R. CIV. P. 72(a). “The reviewing court
may not simply substitute its judgment for that of the deciding court.” Grimes v. City and
County of San Francisco, 951 F.2d 236, 241 (9th Cir. 1991).
“The ‘clearly erroneous’ standard applies to the magistrate judge’s factual findings
while the ‘the contrary to law’ standard applies to the magistrate judge’s legal
conclusions.” Yent v. Baca, No. CV-01-10672 PA(VBKX), 2002 WL 32810316, at *2
(C.D. Cal. Dec. 16, 2002). “[A] a magistrate [judge]’s order is ‘clearly erroneous’ if, after
considering all of the evidence, the district court is left with the definite and firm conviction
that a mistake has been committed, and the order is ‘contrary to law’ when it fails to apply
or misapplies relevant statutes, case law or rules of procedure.” Id. “The objecting party
carries the burden to show that the magistrate judge’s order is clearly erroneous or contrary
to law.” In re: Midland Credit Mgmt., Inc., TCPA Litig., No. 11-MD-2286-MMA (MDD),
2020 WL 6504416, at *4 (S.D. Cal. Nov. 5, 2020).
Here, upon review of the entire record, including Judge Crawford’s orders and the
parties’ briefs, the Court is not persuaded that Judge Crawford’s order requiring Plaintiff
to produce Mr. Thakore’s devices for forensic inspection was clearly erroneous or contrary
to law. Accordingly, Plaintiff’s objection to Judge Crawford’s order that Plaintiff produce
Mr. Thakore’s devices is OVERRULED, and the motion to set aside is DENIED. Plaintiff
shall comply with Judge Crawford’s orders concerning the production of Mr. Thakore’s
devices [Doc. Nos. 36 and 48] by November 23, 2020.
It is SO ORDERED.
Dated: November 18, 2020
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