Fosberry v. Coyle Business Products Inc
ORDER adopting Report and Recommendations of Magistrate Judge Bruce Howe Hendricks and granting 54 Motion for Default Judgment. Further, judgment is entered against Fosberry in favor of Coyle in the amount of $117,102.15. This amount includes actual damages in the amount of $92,102.15 and punitive damages in the amount of $25,000. Signed by Honorable Richard M Gergel on 4/26/2012.(cwhi, )
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF SOUTH CAROLINA
Civil Action No.: 2: 10-cv-799-RMG
Coyle Business Products, Inc.,
This matter comes before the Court on DefendantiCounterclaimant Coyle Business
Plaintiff/Counterdefendant Marty Fosberry ("Fosberry") is proceeding pro se in this action.
Thus, pursuant to the provisions of 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(l) and Local Rule 73.02(B)(2)(e) DSC,
this matter was referred to the United States Magistrate Judge for all pretrial proceedings. On
April 2, 2012, the Magistrate Judge issued a Report and Recommendation recommending that
Coyle's motion for default judgment be granted and that judgment be entered against Fosberry in
favor of Coyle in the amount of $117,102.15. (Dkt. No. 71). The Magistrate Judge instructed
Fosberry of the deadline for filing objections to the Report and Recommendation and the serious
consequences for failing to do so. (Id. at 10). Nevertheless, Fosberry did not file any objections
to the Report and Recommendation. As explained herein, the Court adopts the Magistrate's
Report and Recommendation, grants Coyle's motion for default judgment, and enters judgment
against Fosberry in favor of Coyle in the amount of $117,102.15.
The Magistrate Judge only makes recommendations to this Court. The recommendations
of the Magistrate Judge have no presumptive weight, and the responsibility for making a final
determination remains with this Court. Mathews v. Weber, 423 U.S. 261, 270-71 (1976). The
Court is charged with making a de novo determination of those portions of the Report and
Recommendation to which specific objection is made. Additionally, the Court may "accept,
reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the findings or recommendations made by the magistrate."
28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1). The Court may also "receive further evidence or recommit the matter to
the magistrate with instructions." [d. In the absence of specific objections to the Report and
Recommendation, the Court is not required to give any explanation for adopting the
recommendation. Camby v. Davis, 718 F.2d 198 (4th Cir. 1983).
On March 30, 2010, Fosberry filed this action against Coyle alleging various causes of
action arising from Fosberry's previous employment with Coyle. (Dkt. No.1). On July 7, 2010,
Coyle filed an Amended Answer asserting various counterclaims which also arise from
Fosberry's previous employment with Coyle. (Dkt. No. 17). Fosberry's counsel subsequently
withdrew from his representation of Fosberry, and after multiple inquiries from the Court as to
whether Fosberry intended to continue pursuing his claims (Okt. Nos. 26 and 30), the Court
issued an Order dismissing Fosberry's claims for failure to prosecute under Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 41 (b). (Dkt. No. 35). Thereafter, only Coyle's counterclaims remained.
On August 31,2011, Coyle requested an entry of default against Fosberry pursuant to
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 55(a) based on Fosberry's failure to defend against Coyle's
counterclaims. (Dkt. No. 51).
On September 22, 2011, the Clerk of Court entered default
against Fosberry. (Dkt. No. 52). On September 26, 2011, Coyle filed a motion for default
judgment (Dkt. No. 54), which is the motion currently before the Court. In the memorandum in
support of its motion, Coyle requested a hearing on damages (Dkt. No. 54-1 at 2), as is required
in cases involving unliquidated damages such as this one.
On March 2, 2012, the Court
scheduled a hearing for March 26, 2012 on Coyle's motion for default judgment. (Dkt. No. 57).
The Court ordered Coyle to serve Fosberry with both the notice of the hearing and the underlying
motion for default judgment and to file proof of service with the Court. (Id.). On March 14,
2012, Coyle filed proof of service which showed that Fosberry was personally served with the
notice of hearing and motion for default judgment. (Dkt. Nos. 59 and 59-1).
On March 26,2012, Magistrate Judge Bruce Hendricks held a hearing on Coyle's motion
for default judgment. At the hearing, the Court received evidence from Coyle regarding the
damages to which Coyle is entitled pursuant to Coyle's counterclaims.
Gregory T. Coyle,
president and part owner of Coyle, was present at the hearing and testified regarding the damages
suffered by Coyle. Although Fosberry received notice of the hearing, Fosberry did not attend the
hearing. In determining the damages to which Coyle is entitled on its counterclaims, the Court
must accept all well-pleaded factual allegations in Coyle's counterclaims as true due to
Fosberry's default. See Ryan v. Homecomings Fin. Network, 253 F.3d 778, 780 (4th Cir. 2001).
As explained thoroughly in the Magistrate Judge's Report and Recommendation, Coyle has
established through its well-pleaded factual allegations and the uncontested evidence presented
at the March 26, 2012 hearing that it has suffered $92,102.15 in actual damages which are
recoverable pursuant to Coyle's counterclaims. (Dkt. No. 71). Further, the Court agrees with
Magistrate Judge Hendricks' recommendation that the Court award Coyle $25,000 in punitive
damages pursuant to Coyle's conversion claim based on the facts and circumstances of this case.
(Id. at 8"9 (discussing the relevant factors to consider when awarding punitive damages and
applying them to this case».
For the foregoing reasons, Coyle's motion for default judgment (Dkt. No. 54) is granted.
Further, judgment is entered against Fosberry in favor of Coyle in the amount of $117,102.15.
This amount includes actual damages in the amount of $92,102.15 and punitive damages in the
amount of $25,000.
AND IT IS SO ORDERED.
Richard Mark Gerge
United States District Court Judge
April l.&, 2012
Charleston, South Carolina
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