Shaw v. County of Milwaukee et al
ORDER signed by Judge William C Griesbach on 11/18/2022 denying 48 Motion for judicial disqualification. (cc: all counsel and mailed to pro se party)(Griesbach, William)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF WISCONSIN
WILLIAM ROBERT SHAW,
Case No. 20-C-1533
COUNTY OF MILWAUKEE, et al.,
On April 26, 2022, the Court stayed and administratively closed this case pending
resolution of Milwaukee County criminal cases numbers 17CF003355 and 17CF000769. Dkt. No.
47. About six months later, on October 31, 2022, Plaintiff William Robert Shaw filed a motion
for judicial disqualification. Dkt. No. 48. This is the second time Shaw has asked for a new judge
in this case. See Dkt. Nos. 23 & 48.
Shaw states that the Court is unfairly compromising his civil cases due to racial
discrimination. Dkt. No. 48 at 1. Shaw explains that, in Shaw v. County of Milwaukee, et al., Case
No. 22-C-97 (E.D. Wis.), the Court allegedly ordered him to respond to a motion to compel that
was premature. Id. at 2. Shaw states that when he made the same mistake in a different case, the
Court denied his motion. Id. In Shaw v. Seel, et al., Case No. 20-C-365 (E.D. Wis.), the Court
allegedly gave legal advice during a motion hearing on how to litigate against Shaw. Id. The
Court was also allegedly rude and disrespectful to Shaw during that hearing. Id. And in Shaw v.
City of Milwaukee, Case No. 20-C-1544 (E.D. Wis.), the Court allegedly made Shaw relitigate an
issue that was already argued and decided in a different case, Collins v. City of Milwaukee, et al.,
Case No. 17-C-234 (E.D. Wis.). Id. at 3. Shaw states that he had to conduct the “same and/or
similar discovery” but was limited to obtaining records that were less than 100 pages, otherwise
he had to pay a fee. Id. The Court also allegedly denied his request for a settlement conference.
Dkt. No. 49 at 3. Shaw asks for a new judge or to change venue to the Milwaukee Division. Dkt.
Shaw’s accusations of bias and prejudice are baseless. First, it is common practice to ask
parties to respond to a motion when that specific motion needs a response. That a different motion
in a different case filed under different circumstances did not require a response does not show
bias or prejudice. Each motion and each case is different.
Second, during the motion hearing in Case No. 20-C-365, the Court ordered Defendants to
go back and check whether the videotape evidence Shaw wanted actually existed. Contrary to
Shaw’s assertion, the Court did not prohibit him from getting evidence he wanted for his Monell
claim—it assisted him in acquiring the evidence he asked for. Ultimately, the videotape evidence
he wanted did not exist, but that does not mean that the Court is “always being in favor to
Defendants.” See Dkt. No. 49 at 1. Shaw also claims that the Court instructed Defendants to
conduct a deposition to ask about weather temperatures, see id. at 2, but that motion hearing did
not involve a discussion of depositions. To the extent Shaw believes the Court was rude and
disrespectful, the Court has a duty to control its legal proceedings, and it has the authority to limit
arguments to keep the case on track.
Third, and as noted above, each case is different and Shaw is required to litigate his own
case. He cannot claim that Collins v. City of Milwaukee has already resolved the case in his favor.
Shaw must also finance his own litigation, and there is nothing improper about having to pay a fee
for records. The Court also is not involved in settlement discussions. Shaw must directly contact
Defendants to make a settlement offer.
Finally, Shaw notes that the Court, during hearings, keeps inquiring about when his
underlying criminal cases are going to trial. Dkt. No. 49. He believes this is suspicious because
the Court is “keenly interested in the outcome of the matter.” Id. at 3. But the Court is inquiring
about his criminal trial for purposes of scheduling and determining whether he will remain in the
Milwaukee County Jail. Moreover, this particular case is directly related to his underlying criminal
cases, so it is relevant information for the Court to have. The Court will deny the motion for
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that the plaintiff’s motion for judicial disqualification
(Dkt. No. 48) is DENIED.
Dated at Green Bay, Wisconsin this 18th day of November, 2022.
s/ William C. Griesbach
William C. Griesbach
United States District Judge
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