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Hashim v. Ericksen

United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin

October 22, 2016

AKINBO JS HASHIM, also known as, John D. Tiggs, Jr., Plaintiff,
v.
PETER ERICKSEN, DAVID LONGSINE, JAMES HILBERT, OFFICER ANTONIO CUMMINGS LARRY DILLENBERG, CHAD DEBROUX, BRIAN VAN LOO, DALE COMEAU, BEN GRIFFIN, OFFICER J. MOMMAERTS, MICHAEL PREBERG, JUSTIN SEGERSTROM, AND MICHAEL SCHULTZ, Defendants.

          ORDER

          LYNN ADELMAN UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Plaintiff, Akinbo J.S. Hashim, also known as John D. Tiggs, Jr., is a Wisconsin state prisoner representing himself. He is proceeding on the following claims: (1) retaliation claim against defendant Preberg; (2) Eighth Amendment claims against the corrections officers who denied him food and medicine when he refused to kneel in violation of his medication restriction (i.e., Longsine, Dillenberg, DeBroux, VanLoo, Keiler, Giffin, Mommaerts, Segerstrom, Cummings, Hilbert, Preberg, Comeau); (3) Eighth Amendment claim against defendant Ericksen for failure to take corrective action when notified that plaintiff was being deprived of meals; and (4) Eighth Amendment claims against defendants Longsine and Schultz for forcing plaintiff to eat foods such as mashed potatoes and soup without eating utensils. Plaintiff has filed several motions, which will be addressed herein.[1]

         Plaintiff's Motion to Compel Discovery (Dkt. No. 79)

         Plaintiff has filed a motion for an order compelling defendants to answer his First Request for Admissions, First Request for Production of Documents and Interrogatories, Second Set of Interrogatories, and Second Request for Admissions. Defendants oppose the motion, arguing that they have substantively answered many of the requests and that plaintiff's disagreement with defendants' answers are not the proper subject of a motion to compel. (Dkt. No. 93 at 1.) Defendants also contend that other discovery requests were not answered, or the answer was limited, based on valid objections. (Id. at 1-2.) I will reproduce plaintiff's relevant discovery requests, and defendants' responses to the requests, here.

First Request for Admission 3: Defendants, consistent with Wis. Adm. Code § DOC 303.85(2), the department may keep conduct reports which have been dismissed or in which the prisoner was found not guilty for statistical purposes. Id. (Register No. 569, May 2003). Please admit that Correctional Officer Preberg wrote and Plaintiff was subsequently issued Conduct Reprot 2075023 charging Plaintiff with threats, disruptive conduct and disrespect in violation of Wis. Adm. Code §§ DOC 303.28 and DOC 303.25. (Register No. 569, May 2003). Defendant, please produce Conduct Report 2075023 and the entire disciplinary record, and/or other relevant and pertinent documents created and generated concerning Conduct Report 2075023 to them absolute end tendered and submitted for the official disciplinary record by prison staff, the prisoner, witnesses or otherwise.
RESPONSE NO. 3: Counsel for defendants OBJECTS to this request on the ground that it is a compound request and is not a proper request to admit pursuant to Rule 36 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Notwithstanding and without waiving said objection, ADMIT that DOC 303.85 (May 2003 version) indicates that the department may keep conduct reports that have been dismissed or in which the inmate was found not guilty for statistical purposes and security reasons. Green Bay Correctional Institution retains copies of dismissed conduct reports only for one year and no longer has this conduct report. Upon inquiry into the information known or readily available to the defendants, defendants lack sufficient knowledge with which to admit or deny the remainder of this request because Conduct Report #2075023 is not contained in plaintiff's legal file and does not appear on his DOC-120 ID Card.
First Request for Admission 4: Defendants, please admit that on or about March 29, 2010, or approximately eleven days after Conduct Report 2075023 had been issued to Plaintiff, defendant, Michael Schultz was the presiding supervisor at the disciplinary hearing committee for that conduct report and Plaintiff was found and adjudged Not Guilty of the disciplinary infractions charged in Conduct Report 2075023.
RESPONSE 4: ADMIT that Conduct Report #2075023 was dismissed; however, upon inquiry into the information known or readily available to the defendants, defendants lack sufficient knowledge with which to admit or deny the remainder of this request because Conduct Report #2075023 is not contained in plaintiff's legal file and does not appear on his DOC-120 ID Card.

(Dkt. No. 80-1 at 14-15.) Plaintiff disagrees with defendants' assertion that they did not retain the conduct report, as well as defendants' lack of knowledge as to whether Schultz was the presiding supervisor at the disciplinary hearing committee. However, plaintiff's disagreement with defendants' response is not a proper basis for a motion to compel.

First Request for Admission 9: Defendants, please admit that Defendant Ericksen's discretion to impose security precautions against Plaintiff while at GBCI in the segregation building does not include, and indeed, could not include the property issued and received by Plaintiff at the Grant County Jail.
RESPONSE 9: DENY on the grounds that plaintiff would not be allowed to retain any property issued to him from the Grant County Jail upon his return to Green Bay Correctional Institution.

(Dkt. No. 80-1 at 17.) Plaintiff contends that defendants' response twists his request to purport that plaintiff would not have been permitted to retain property items issued at the jail. (Dkt. No. 79 at 6.) According to plaintiff, defendant Ericksen imposed security precautions against him in an unconstitutional manner. He requests that the court order defendants to admit that “Ericksen did not possess the discretion and authority to extend to the Grant County Jail the security precautions imposed at GBCI and and by extension, Hashim can't have violated prison rules at GBCI when returning with pens issued at the county jail[.]” Id. However, I find that defendants' response answers plaintiff's discovery request. Plaintiff's disagreement with the manner in which they responded is not a proper basis for a motion to compel.

First Request for Admission 10: Defendants, please admit that following Conduct Report 2075054 written by Defendant DeBroux against Plaintiff for purportedly for refusing to return a meal tray [sic], defendants imposed a three-day “bag-meal” security precaution.
RESPONSE NO. 10: DENY.

(Dkt. No. 80-1 at 17.) Plaintiff disagrees with defendants' denial of this admissions requests. (Dkt. No. 79 at 7.) However, defendants responded to the request and plaintiff's disagreement with it is not the proper subject of a motion to compel.

First Set of Interrogatories, No. 6: Defendants, please identify and describe any correspondence that the Division of Adult Institutions, the security suite at GBCI or Defendants Schultz and/or Ericksen received from plaintiff and/or private citizens demonstrating the allegations included in Conduct Report 2075023, Plaintiff's ailment or injuries preventing kneeling and the defendants' decisions to deny Plaintiff any meals, mails and/or medications. Defendants, please produce any and all correspondence that the Division of Adult Institutions, the security suite at GBCI, or Defendants Schultz and/or Ericksen. Defendants, please produce any such correspondences that fits this characterization received and their responses during the period from March, 2010 through July 1, 2010. Suffice it to note that this is not a compound request; the correspondences would have addressed the false allegation in the conduct report, the security precautions, Plaintiff's medical restriction and the likes.
RESPONSE: Counsel for defendants OBJECTS to this request on the grounds that it is incomprehensible, vague, ambiguous, and calls for speculation on behalf of the defendants in order to respond. Notwithstanding said objection, GBCI did not locate any correspondence in either the Security Director's Office or Captain Schultz's office regarding plaintiff.

(Dkt. No. 80-1 at 30-31.) Plaintiff contends that the court should compel defendants to enlarge their search, as specified in his discovery request. However, defendants searched for correspondence and did not find any. They reasonably responded to this discovery request.

First Set of Interrogatories, No. 8: Defendants, please identify and describe the dates, times and correctional staff performing, conducting and ordering the cell searches and strip searches of Plaintiff from the period of March 18, 2010 through June 26, 2010, while assigned to GBCI in the Program Segregation Building. Defendants, please produce any written documentation that exists that ...

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