Coward v. Jabe et al

Filing 248

MEMORANDUM OPINION re: pltf's Motion for Attorney Fees and Expenses. Signed by District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema on 11/09/17. (pmil, )

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA Alexandria Division KALVIN DONNELL COWARD, Plaintiff, l:10-cv-147 (LMB/MSN) V. A. DAVID ROBINSON, Chief of Corrections, ^ aL, Defendants MEMORANDUM OPINION Before the Court is plaintiff Kalvin Donnell Coward's ("Cowaird" or "plaintiff) Motion for Attorney Fees and Expenses ("PL's Mot. Fees") [Dkt. No. 242], in which plaintiff seeks an order awarding his counsel $388,967.50 in attorneys' fees and $31,255.00 in litigation expenses. Defendants A. David Robinson and Harold W. Clarke (collectively, "defendants") argue that the amount of plaintiffs request is unreasonable due to block-billing and vague entries, multiple timekeepers billing time for the same task, and that some portions of the request relate to irrelevant matters. For the reasons that follow, plaintiffs motion will be granted in part and denied in part, and counsel for plaintiff will be awarded a total of $338,268.30, consisting of $310,748.30 in attorneys' fees and $27,520.00 in expenses. I. BACKGROUND The factual and procedural background of this case is fully recounted in the Court's Memorandum Opinion. See Coward v. Robinson. No. lO-cv-147, 2017 WL 3699866 (E.D. Va. Aug. 28, 2017). In brief, plaintiff alleged that defendants, in their capacities as employees of the Virginia Department of Corrections, unlawfully impeded his religious exercise as an adherent of the Nationsof Gods and Earths ("NGE" or "the Nation") in violation of the Religious Land Use

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