Counce v. Wolting et al
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER ENTERED: Plaintiff's motions 117 & 121 are denied. Defendants shall file a Martinez Report by March 17, 2017. Signed by Chief Judge J. Thomas Marten on 02/16/17. Mailed to pro se party Kenneth Counce by regular mail. (smnd)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF KANSAS
Case No. 13-3199-JTM
RYAN WOLTING, ET AL.,
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Before the court are plaintiff’s Motion for More Definite Statement (Dkt. 117) and
Motion for Failure of Defendant Ploutz to Supply the Identities of John Doe 3 and 4 and File
Those Names With the Court (Dkt. 121). For the reasons stated below, the court denies both
Motion for More Definite Statement
Plaintiff seeks a more detailed explanation of defendants David Chamberlain and Tracy
Ploutz’s Answer (Dkt. 103). Plaintiff claims these defendants “continuously [made] vague or
ambiguous non-responsive denials” to which “there is simply no cognitive reply that can be
made.” (Dkt. 117. at 1). The court disagrees.
Under Rule 12(e) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, “[a] party may move for a
more definite statement of a pleading to which a responsive pleading is allowed but which is so
vague or ambiguous that the party cannot reasonably prepare a response.” An answer is not a
pleading to which a response is allowed. Thus, this motion is improper.
More importantly, these defendants have complied with the pleading rules. Rule 8(b)(1)
provides: “In responding to a pleading, a party must: (A) state in short and plain terms its
defenses to each claim asserted against it; and (B) admit or deny the allegations asserted against
it by an opposing party.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 8(b)(1). Defendants have admitted, denied, or stated that
they lacked the knowledge or information to answer the allegations in the complaint. See Fed. R.
Civ. P. 8(b)(5). Plaintiff argues defendants should include more information, including the
identities of those present and the Kansas law that the defendants relied on. Plaintiff, however,
bears the burden of alleging that type of information. Regarding plaintiff’s request for videos,
audio sound recordings, and photographs, defendants are not required to provide such items in
their Answer. These items are properly part of initial disclosures and discovery, not pleadings.
For these reasons, the court denies plaintiff’s Motion for More Definite Statement.
Motion for Failure of Defendant Ploutz to Supply the Identities of John Doe 3
and 4 and File Those Names with the Court
On September 21, 2016, this court ordered defendant Ploutz to file a report with the court
identifying John Does 3 and 4 or explaining why he cannot do so. (Dkt. 109. at 2-3). In a report
filed with the court on October 21, 2016, defendant Ploutz declared he was unable to identify
John Does 3 and 4 and detailed the steps he took in his investigation. (Dkt. 118). The court finds
that defendant Ploutz adequately tried to identify John Does 3 and 4. The court therefore denies
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED this 16th day of February, 2017, that plaintiff’s
motions (Dkts. 117 and 121) are DENIED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that defendants shall file a Martinez Report by March 17,
s/ J. Thomas Marten
Chief United States District 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?