United States District Court, W.D. North Carolina, Asheville Division
JAMES A. MINYARD, Plaintiff,
ERIK A. HOOKS, et al., Defendants.
D. Whitney Chief United States District Judge.
MATTER comes before the Court on pro se
Plaintiff's Motion to Compel, (Doc. No. 48), Motion for
In Camera Viewing, (Doc. No. 59), Motion for Court
to Issue Order on Motion to Compel, (Doc. No. 64), and Motion
for Extension of Time to Respond to Motion for Summary
Judgment, (Doc. No. 65).
Amended Complaint passed initial review on claims that
Defendants Hooks, Guice, Mitchell and Hernandez violated
Plaintiff's rights with regards to the handling of his
mail at Avery-Mitchell Correctional Institution. (Doc. Nos.
18, 20). Defendants filed an Answer and the Court entered a
Pretrial Scheduling Order setting the discovery cutoff date
as January 28, 2019 and the dispositive motion due date as
February 27, 2019. (Doc. Nos. 41, 42).
filed the instant Motion to Compel on December 20, 2018,
(Doc. No. 48), arguing that he served Requests for Production
on counsel for Defendants on October 30 and November 8, 2018,
to which Defendants failed to respond within 30 days.
Plaintiff wrote defense counsel a letter on December 10, 2018
pointing out that the responses were late and requesting
immediate responses. Defendants' counsel did not respond
to the letter but filed objections. Plaintiff wrote to
counsel on October 30, 2018 in an attempt to resolve the
dispute as required by the local rules. Defendants'
objections are waived as a result of their failure to timely
assert them. The belated objections that the discovery is
irrelevant, burdensome, and privileged are meritless.
attached to his Motion to Compel a 10/30/18 “Motion for
Discovery” dated October 30, 2018, that he avers he
mailed to defense counsel a second time on November 8, 2018,
in which he requested the following discovery
(1) Full list of all inmates who has placed grievances or
complaints against the staff at Avery-Mitchell prison unit
for the past five years for the same issues the Plaintiff had
to file before the honorable courts and Judge. Opening of
legal mail, taking items out of mail, newspapers, magazines,
books without filling out filing out a censorship forms as
required by policy.
(2) Statements of affidavits of truth from all staff who work
second shift (A and B rotation) in Yancy Unit at
Avery-Mitchell Correctional unit stating who told them
(staff) to take items from newspapers, books, magazines,
legal mail (open) without censorship form being filled out
(Doc. No. 48-1).
also attached a Letter to defense counsel dated October 30,
2018, attempting to negotiate settlement of the case with
defense counsel. (Doc. No. 48-3).
second letter dated December 10, 2018 from Plaintiff to
defense counsel, Plaintiff reminds counsel about his
discovery requests of October 30 and November 8, states in
part “I am sending a letter of Reminder in regards to
my motions of Discovery sent on 10-30-18, 11-8-18. Requests
for Admissions sent with Plaintiff's Interrogatories and
Request for production of documents.” (Doc. No. 48-2).
Plaintiff refers to his discovery request and his October 30
settlement letter and asks defense counsel to respond within
April 24, 2019, the Court ordered Defendants to file a
Response showing cause why Plaintiff's Motion to Compel
should not be granted. (Doc. No. 54). In Defendants'
Response in opposition to the Motion to Compel, (Doc. No.
57), Defendants state that Plaintiff was served on May 8,
2019 with documents responsive to Plaintiff's discovery
requests 1 and 2 including grievances submitted by inmates
confined at Avery Mitchell C.I. from January 1, 2015 to
December 31, 2018, shift narratives for the relevant time
frame, and Avery Mitchell SOP related to the mailroom and
publications received by inmates.
filed a Reply, (Doc. No. 58), stating that Plaintiff received
three years' worth (approximately 2500 pages) of the
Second-shift security roster for staff at Avery Mitchell
Yancy Unit that was never requested by Plaintiff, around 400
grievances filled out by inmates all over the state, fewer
than 10 of which address grievances over legal mail and/or
newspapers, and nothing else was received in response to the
October 30 discovery request. Plaintiff argues that he sent
interrogatories and requests for production of documents in
good faith, that he requested admissions and Plaintiffs
failed to respond, and that Defendants have waived objections
by failure to timely respond. Plaintiff asks the court for
in camera review to see if any of the documents
requested are sensitive or privileged. Plaintiff reiterated
this request in a Motion for In Camera Viewing,
(Doc. No. 59). Plaintiff has now filed a Motion asking the
Court to rule on his Motion to Compel. (Doc. No. 64).
has also filed a Motion for Extension of Time in which he
requests a 30-day extension to respond to Defendants'