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Thompson v. Klimek

United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Southern Division

December 21, 2016

TERRY L. THOMPSON, Plaintiff,
v.
JOSH KLIMEK; DIANE ROMKEMA, Manager; and LARSEN, D-H-O Hearing Officer, Defendants.

          ORDER GRANTING MOTION FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER AND GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART VARIOUS OTHER MOTIONS

          KAREN E. SCHREIER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff, Terry L. Thompson, is an inmate at the South Dakota State Penitentiary in Sioux Falls. Plaintiff filed a pro se civil rights lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, and amended his complaint. Defendants now move the court to enter a protective order staying discovery. Thompson also filed various motions. For the following reasons, defendants' motion for protective order is granted, and Thompson's various motions are granted in part and denied in part.

         DISCUSSION

         I. Motions to Appoint Counsel

         Thompson filed three motions to appoint counsel. Docket 9; Docket 17; Docket 35. “A pro se litigant has no statutory or constitutional right to have counsel appointed in a civil case.” Stevens v. Redwing, 146 F.3d 538, 546 (8th Cir. 1998). In determining whether to appoint counsel to a pro se litigant, the district court considers the complexity of the case, the ability of the litigant to investigate the facts, the existence of conflicting testimony, and the litigant's ability to present his claim. Id. At this point, Thompson is able to present his claim, and his claims are not complex. It is too early in the litigation to determine the other factors. Therefore, Thompson's motions to appoint counsel are denied.

         II. Motion to Amend Jury Demand

         Thompson moves to amend the request for damages from $20, 000 to $500, 000 against each defendant. Docket 11. Defendants have not objected to this motion and the court finds that it is in the interest of justice. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a)(2) (“The court should freely give leave [to amend] when justice so requires”). Thompson's motion to amend the jury demand is granted.

         III. Motion to Strike Quash Irrelevant Material from Record

         Thompson moves to strike from the record evidence that he alleges is not relevant to his claim and is hearsay. Docket 16. He does not identify the evidence. Defendants have only answered Thompson's complaint and responded to his factual allegations. They have not introduced any evidence. Therefore, Thompson's motion is denied.

         IV. Motion for Discovery

         Thompson moves the court to order defendants to provide him with discovery. Docket 18. Thompson seeks his prison disciplinary, administrative, and medical records. Id. Defendants have not responded to this request. Because it appears that this information will be necessary for Thompson to respond to defendants' motion for summary judgment based on qualified immunity, the court grants Thompson's motion.

         Thompson requests “all grievances on all defendants” and their “disciplinary records.” Id. ¶ 3. To the extent Thompson seeks grievances he filed against defendants and defendants' disciplinary records that concern Thompson, the motion is granted. To the extent that Thompson seeks grievances other inmates filed against defendants or the disciplinary records that do not concern Thompson, the motion is denied.

         V. Motion to ...


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