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Goldman v. Mcroberts

United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division

April 5, 2019

LANCE ADAM GOLDMAN, Plaintiff
v.
LEE MCROBERTS, MICHAEL DOSS, ERICK VANDENBURG, CHRISTOPHER WHITFORD, SCOTT MCALLISTER, JEROLD SCHNEIDER, VERA CONERLY, JAMIE BROCKWELL, and RODNEY RICHARDSON, Defendants.

          Gershwin A. Drain Judge

         OPINION AND ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO RECUSE MAGISTRATE [JUDGE] (DE 80), DEEMING UNOPPOSED IN PART & DENYING IN PART PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO REMOVE AND REASSIGN APPOINTED COUNSEL (DE 81), and GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S COUNSEL'S MOTION TO WITHDRAW LIMITED APPEARANCE (DE 94)

          ANTHONY P. PATTI UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         I. OPINION

         A. The Instant Lawsuit involves Parnall Correctional Facility (SMT) Defendants.

         Plaintiff filed this lawsuit on December 19, 2017 against 17 Defendants. (DE 1 at 2-5.) On March 26, 2018, the Court dismissed Plaintiff's claims against eight of the named Defendants. (DE 9.) Each of the remaining nine Defendants is alleged to be employed at the Parnall Correctional Facility (SMT) in Jackson County in the Eastern District of Michigan. (DE 1 at 2-5.)

         B. Plaintiff's initial emergency report lead to a limited appearance of counsel.

         Plaintiff filed this lawsuit in pro per. On August 9, 2018, Plaintiff filed an “emergency” filing, within which he claimed to have been sexually assaulted on July 26, 2018 and requested the appointment of counsel. (DE 34 ¶¶ 8, 18.)

         On September 17, 2018, attorney Daniel E. Manville entered a limited appearance “to engage in discovery.” (DE 42.) Accordingly, my September 24, 2018 order conditionally granted Plaintiff's requests for the appointment of counsel (DEs 36, 37) for the purpose of engaging in discovery, but denied the requests without prejudice to being refiled after the completion of attorney Manville's service. (DE 43 at 11-12.)

         Shortly thereafter, I entered an order regarding Plaintiff's emergency report, which stated, in pertinent part, “Given Plaintiff's counsel's recent, limited appearance ‘to engage in discovery[, ]'… the prudent approach is [to] have Plaintiff address his emergency concerns … with his counsel, so that his attorney may investigate further, conduct any necessary discovery and file an appropriate motion if Court action is necessary.” (DE 44 at 2.) On October 12, 2018, Plaintiff notified the Court of his dissatisfaction with Attorney Manville and, concurrently, sought to act as co-counsel. (DE 45). Counsel filed a response, after which I entered an order that, inter alia, clarified counsel's role in this litigation and permitted Plaintiff to act as co-counsel. (DEs 46, 49.) The order modified the scope of Attorney's Manville's original appointment to be “only for discovery purposes for matters related to Plaintiff's allegations of sexual assault.” (DE 49 at 2.)

         C. Plaintiff's second emergency report was addressed by the Court on November 26, 2018.

         On October 31, 2018, Plaintiff filed another emergency report, and this one was written on toilet paper. (DE 50.) The Court required non-party MDOC to file a response, which it did on November 15, 2018. (DEs 51, 55.) Eleven days later, on November 26, 2018, I entered the following text-only notice: “The Court has reviewed Defendant's response and supporting affidavit . . . and i[s] satisfied that no further action is necessary, as the issues raised in Plaintiff's Emergency Report . . . are moot[.]” Plaintiff's reply, dated November 27, 2018, was filed in this case on November 30, 2018. (DE 60.)

         Plaintiff later sent a letter to the Court, which, among other things, took issue with the fact that the Court's determination did not take his reply into consideration. (DE 63 at 1.) However, on February 6, 2019, that particular filing was stricken from the record, instructing Plaintiff for the second time that letters are an inappropriate method of communicating with the Court.

         D. Thirteen (13) Motions are Pending in this Case.

         Judge Drain has referred all pretrial matters in this case to me. (DE 53.) At the present moment, there are twelve pending ...


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