Apodaca v. Corizon Health Care et al
ORDER by Magistrate Judge Laura Fashing granting 21 Motion for the Admission of Documents. (cda)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEW MEXICO
VICTOR ANDREW APODACA, SR.,
CORIZON HEALTH CARE, et al.,
ORDER GRANTING MOTION
FOR THE ADMISSION OF DOCUMENTS
THIS MATTER comes before the Court on plaintiff Andrew Apodaca’s Request for the
Admission of Documents filed July 28, 2016.
Having reviewed the motion and
being fully advised, the Court finds that Mr. Apodaca’s request for admission of documents is
well taken and will be GRANTED.
Mr. Apodaca filed his complaint for civil rights violations on February 8, 2016. Doc. 1.
On April 28, 2016, the Court dismissed several defendants and many of Mr. Apodaca’s claims.
See Doc. 15.
The Court held Mr. Apodaca’s motion for temporary restraining order in
abeyance to the extent that it raises Eighth Amendment concerns related to his medical care.
The only remaining claim is Mr. Apodaca’s allegation that Dr. Birnbaum was
deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs.
Doc. 15 at 11.
The Court ordered Dr.
Birnbaum to prepare a Martinez Report regarding Mr. Apodaca’s medical care and the issues
raised in his motions for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction.
Mr. Apodaca filed the same document in Apodaca v. Marcantel et al, 1:15-cv-00061-LH-LF,
at Doc. 83, and the Court will grant his request to admit documents in that case in an order filed
contemporaneously with this order.
Under Martinez v. Aaron, 570 F.2d 317, 319–20 (10th Cir. 1978), the Court may order
defendants to investigate the incident or incidents underlying plaintiff’s lawsuit and submit a report
of their investigation in order to develop a factual or legal basis for determining whether plaintiff
has a meritorious claim. See, e.g., Gee v. Estes, 829 F.2d 1005, 1007 (10th Cir. 1987). A
Martinez Report may be used in a variety of contexts, including motions for summary judgment or
a sua sponte entry of summary judgment. When a Martinez Report is used for summary
judgment purposes, the pro se plaintiff must be afforded an opportunity to present conflicting
evidence to controvert the facts set out in the report. Hall v. Bellmon, 935 F.2d 1106, 1109 (10th
The Court’s order for a Martinez Report directed Mr. Apodaca to file his response to the
report no later than June 10, 2016. Doc. 16. Mr. Apodaca filed his response on May 31, 2016,
but did not include the documents he seeks to admit in the instant motion. Doc. 19. In a letter to
the Court on June 17, 2016, Mr. Apodaca explained that he was having difficulty mailing
documents to the Court because he could no longer afford to pay for postage. See Doc. 20. In
light of these difficulties, Mr. Apodaca asks that the Court accept documents filed in response to
the Martinez Report after the deadline. Doc. 21 at 2. As Mr. Apodaca must be afforded an
opportunity to present conflicting evidence to controvert the facts set out in the report, Mr.
Apodaca’s motion will be granted. The Court will accept the documents for consideration in
response to the Martinez Report.2
The Honorable Martha Vazquez referred this case to me to conduct hearings, if warranted,
including evidentiary hearings, and to perform any legal analysis required to recommend to the
Court an ultimate disposition of the case. Doc. 5. I will, therefore, issue a report and
recommendation with regard to defendant’s Martinez Report.
Within his motion for the admission of documents, Mr. Apodaca submits a motion for the
production of documents from defendant pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 34.
21 at 3–6. Discovery matters are within the district court’s broad discretion.
Calbone, 600 F.3d 1301, 1310 (10th Cir. 2010). The purpose of a Martinez report in a pro se
prisoner case is to “develop a record sufficient to ascertain whether there are any factual or legal
bases for the prisoner’s claims.”
Hall, 935 F.2d at 1109.
The practice of ordering a Martinez
report allows the assembly of a record “necessary for the orderly consideration of the issues.”
Martinez, 570 F.2d at 319.
At this point, discovery is unnecessary because Dr. Birnbaum has
provided a record sufficient to ascertain whether there is any factual or legal basis for Mr.
The Court denies Mr. Apodaca’s request for discovery.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that Mr. Apodaca’s Request for the Admission of
Documents (Doc. 21) is GRANTED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Mr. Apodaca’s request for discovery is DENIED.
United States Magistrate Judge
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