Authement Jr v. Hernandez et al
ORDER denying 94 Motion for Reconsideration re 93 MEMORANDUM ORDER. Signed by Magistrate Judge Joseph H L Perez-Montes on 7/11/2017. (crt,ThomasSld, T)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF LOUISIANA
BRIAN AUTHEMENT, JR.,
CIVIL ACTION NO. 1:16-CV-00151
CHIEF JUDGE DRELL
MEAGAN WILKINSON, ET AL.,
MAGISTRATE JUDGE PEREZ-MONTES
Before the Court is a Motion for Reconsideration filed by Plaintiff Brian
Authement, Jr. (“Authement”). (Doc. 94). The motion pertains to this Court’s orders
(Docs. 91, 93) denying a motion to reset deadlines, denying leave to take the
deposition of Sheriff Kenneth Hedrick (“Sheriff Hedrick”), and denying leave to
amend the complaint to add Sheriff Hedrick as a defendant. Defendants oppose the
motion. (Doc. 96). Authement did not file a reply.
In his Motion for Reconsideration, Authement rehashes many of the same
arguments made in his original motions. As stated in the Memorandum Order (Doc.
93) denying Authement’s Motion for Leave to File Second Amended Complaint and
Second Motion to Reset Deadlines (Docs. 75, 78), the general rule is that leave to
amend pleadings should be freely granted when justice requires. Fed. R. Civ. P.
15(a)(2). However, in this instance, Fed. R. Civ. P. 16(b) governs the amendment of
pleadings, as a scheduling order had already been issued. See S&W Enterprises,
L.L.C. v. SouthTrust Bank of Alabama, NA, 315 F.3d 533, 536 (5th Cir. 2003). Since
Authement’s request came after the scheduling order’s deadline for amending
pleadings, Authement was required to show good cause as to why his request should
be granted. Barnes v. Madison, 79 F. App’x. 691, 698 (5th Cir. 2003) (citing Fed. R.
Civ. P. 16(b)) (providing that a scheduling order “shall not be modified except upon a
showing of good cause”)). Therefore, Authement first has to show good cause before
the general rule found in Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a) could be applied.
In order to meet the good cause standard, a party must show that the deadlines
could not have reasonably been met, despite the diligence of the party requesting the
extension. Texas Indigenous Council v. Simpkins, 544 F. App’x. 418, 420 (5th Cir.
2013). The four relevant factors are: “(1) the explanation for the failure to timely move
for leave to amend; (2) the importance of the amendment; (3) potential prejudice in
allowing the amendment; and (4) the availability of a continuance to cure such
The deadline for amending pleadings was July 1, 2016. (Docs. 36, 37). However,
Authement filed a Motion to Amend to name the Sheriff of Concordia Parish as
defendant on January 15, 2017. (Doc. 74).1 As the deadline to file amended pleadings
had passed, Authement was required to show good cause as to why his request to
amend pleadings after that deadline should be granted. He failed to do so.
In his Motion for Reconsideration, Authement notes that there was only a
seven-day difference between the time he filed the first Motion to Amend on January
The motion filed on January 15, 2017 named Sheriff Randy Maxwell. On January 23, 2017,
Authement filed a Motion to Strike that Motion to Amend (Doc. 77), in order to file a corrected Motion
for Leave to File a Second Amended Complaint (Doc. 78), naming Sheriff Hedrick, the correct Sheriff
of Concordia Parish. Both motions were filed well past the deadline of July 1, 2016 to file amended
15, 2017, and the corrected Motion to Amend filed on January 23, 2017. However, the
real issue is the 198-day difference between the deadline to amend pleadings on July
1, 2016, and the attempt to add the Sheriff to the case on January 15, 2017.
Authement still has not shown why it took more than six months beyond the deadline
to amend pleadings to include Sheriff Hedrick, or for that matter, any sheriff.
Authement further asserts that he did not have sufficient time to depose
Sheriff Hedrick, and that the Court erred in denying the extensions of the discovery
deadlines. Specifically, he contends that the Plan of Work deadlines were far too
ambitious, considering the problems Authement had obtaining the correct names of
Defendants and serving them, as well as problems caused by flooding in the Baton
Rouge area in August 2016.
Although Authement asserts that “[o]n January 3, 2017, the parties filed a
joint motion to reset deadlines, which was not adequate and only provided a couple
of weeks to take depositions” (Doc. 94, p. 2), the Court notes that no joint motion to
reset deadlines was filed on January 3, 2017, much less in the entire month of
January. The only motion to extend deadlines was filed on January 15, 2017, and
that motion was opposed by Defendants. (See docs. 75, 86). That motion was denied,
which led to Authement filing this Motion for Reconsideration. (Doc. 93). However,
the parties did file a joint motion to reset deadlines on December 13, 2016. The motion
was granted on December 14, 2016. (Docs. 67, 68). That order extended the discovery
deadline to January 31, 2017, from the original deadline of October 3, 2016. (See doc.
37). Thus, despite Authement’s assertions to the contrary, from the time the joint
motion was filed and granted in mid-December, Authement had an additional 48 days
to take the depositions, as opposed to just a “couple of weeks.” And in any event, the
parties — including Authement — selected the initial and extended deadlines, not
As detailed in this Court’s April 4, 2017 Memorandum Order, Authement had
been provided documents in the initial disclosures which showed that Sheriff Hedrick
was the Sheriff of Concordia Parish during the dates of Authement’s incarceration.
Authement also had documents regarding his treatment at both Concordia Parish
Correctional Facility and River Correctional Center. Furthermore, whether
Authement had seen a medical professional while housed at River Correctional
Center was within the scope of Authement’s personal knowledge.2 Therefore, it
should not have taken more than six months beyond the deadline to seek discovery
or amend pleadings to include Sheriff Hedrick. Adding a new defendant and
extending the deadlines would have caused Defendants prejudice, as substantial
additional discovery would be necessary. Further, amendment would have caused
Defendants to incur added expense and hardship, and would have significantly
Authement argues that he could not have known why Nurse Wilkinson stopped seeing him or failed
to administer antibiotics. Authement asserts that it was not discovered until Nurse Wilkinson’s
deposition was taken that she was on leave and that there were no healthcare providers assigned to
fill in for her. Authement states that “[t]he very day those depositions were taken, the leave to amend
was filed to add the Sheriff. The claim against Sheriff Hedrick could not have been added sooner,
because Mr. Authement did not know that Nurse Wilkinson was out until her deposition was taken.”
(Doc. 94, p. 4). However, Authement attaches as an exhibit the deposition of Nurse Wilkinson, which
clearly shows it was taken January 23, 2017. (Doc. 94-3). The Motion to Amend naming the Sheriff of
Concordia Parish was filed on January 15, 2017, before the deposition occurred. (Doc. 74). The
corrected motion to amend filed on January 23, 2017, simply changed the Sheriff’s name, not the
claims. (Doc. 78). Therefore, Authement is clearly incorrect to say that the deposition of Nurse
Wilkinson, taken on January 23, 2017, caused him to file a motion to name the Sheriff of Concordia
Parish as a defendant on January 15, 2017.
delayed the pretrial conference and trial date. Authement has failed to show good
cause, either in his original motions or in the Motion for Reconsideration, to amend
the pleadings to add the Sheriff of Concordia Parish, to depose Sheriff Hedrick, and
to reset deadlines.
Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that Motion for Reconsideration (Doc. 94) is
THUS DONE AND SIGNED in chambers in Alexandria, Louisiana, this
_______ day of July, 2017.
Joseph H.L. Perez-Montes
United States Magistrate Judge
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