United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Western Division
JEFFREY L. VIKEN CHIEF JUDGE.
before the court is defendants' motion for a protective
order. (Docket 106). Defendants seek a protective order
pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. 26(c) to “prevent the
Plaintiff, John Reints . . . from conducting any further
discovery until such time as the Court makes a ruling on the
Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment, related to the
statute of limitations and qualified immunity.”
Id. at p. 1. Defendants claim “[a] protective
order is warranted on the grounds that the Defendants are
entitled to qualified immunity and further to protect the
Defendants from the undue burden and expense of the
Plaintiff's broad-reaching discovery.” Id.
support of their motion for a protective order, defendants
include the five discovery requests made by Mr. Reints.
(Dockets 108-1 through 108-5). Each of plaintiff's
discovery requests include interrogatories pursuant to
Fed.R.Civ.P. 33(b), requests for production of documents
pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 34(b) and requests for admissions
pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. 36(a). See, i.e., Docket 108-1 at pp.
John Reints filed an affidavit in response to defendants'
motion for a protective order and his own motion for
additional time in light of surgery. (Docket 109). With his
submission, Mr. Reints filed ten exhibits. (Dockets 109-1
through 109-10). Mr. Reints subsequently filed a
“partial reply brief, ” four affidavits and a
“supplemental reply brief” in response to
defendant's motion. (Dockets 112, 114, 115, 121 and 122).
Attached to plaintiff's fourth affidavit were 29 exhibits
totaling 114 pages. (Dockets 122-1 through 122-29). In
between plaintiff's multiple filings, defendants filed a
reply brief in support of their motion for a protective
order. (Docket 116).
same day as plaintiff's last filing, defendants filed a
motion for summary judgment, an affidavit with 19 exhibits
totaling 339 pages, a statement of undisputed material facts
and a legal memorandum. (Dockets 123, 126, 126-1 through
126-19, 127 and 128). Defendants' motion for summary
judgment will be separately addressed later in this order.
December 8, 2014, the court addressed the issues of qualified
immunity and statute of limitations raised in defendants'
answers to plaintiff's amended complaint. (Docket 63). By
that order, the court stayed all discovery “except as
may be necessary to properly present the dispositive immunity
and statute of limitations defenses for resolution by
appropriate motion under Rule 56 of the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure and D.S.D. Civ. LR 56.1.” Id.
at p. 3. After consideration of the parties' proposals
regarding a limited discovery schedule (Dockets 67-69), the
court entered a scheduling order. (Docket 70). The order
established deadlines for the exchange of prediscovery
disclosures pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(a)(1), disclosure of
experts and the submission of dispositive motions.
Id. at pp. 2-4. The order permitted each party to
serve “[a] maximum of twenty-five (25)
interrogatories” and “a maximum of ten (10)
depositions for each party, excluding depositions of
experts.” Id. ¶¶ 4 and 6.
court subsequently granted continuances of the deadlines but
maintained the other provisions of the scheduling order. See
Dockets 73, 76, 80, 82 and 87. By the order of November 9,
2016, the court required that “[d]efendants' motion
addressing dispositive immunity and statute of limitations
defenses for resolution by appropriate motion under Rule 56 .
. . and D.S.D. Civ. LR 56.1, together with a supporting
brief, shall be filed and served on or before April 21,
2017.” (Docket 87 at p. 2) (bold omitted).
the expiration of the April 2017 deadline, the court granted
another extension of all deadlines but maintained the other
provisions of the original scheduling order. (Docket 89).
Four additional extensions were granted over the course of
the next 18 months. (Dockets 91, 96, 98 & 100). On April
10, 2019, the court granted the parties an eleventh extension
of the deadlines since the February 2015 order. (Docket 105).
The purpose of the order was to grant the parties'
request to extend the discovery period by six weeks.
Id. at p. 1. Defendants were served with Mr.
Reints' discovery related to Defendant Jason Green on
January 28, 2019. (Docket 108-1 at p. 19). Mr. Green was
asked to provide responses to 96 requests for admission,
seven interrogatories and one request for production of
documents. (Docket 108 at pp. 5-19). Defendants assert Mr.
Green timely “provided answers and responses to the
discovery, subject to any No. of objections related to the
statute of limitations.” (Docket 107 at p. 10).
the other individuals, defendants assert the discovery to:
Andy Chlebeck is 43 pages long and contains 81 numbered
paragraphs. Id. at p. 11 (referencing Docket 108-2);
Brad Solon is 48 pages long and contains 72 numbered
paragraphs. Id. (referencing Docket 108-3);
Joel Landeen is 70 pages long and contains 45 numbered
paragraphs. Id. (referencing Docket 108-4); and
Wade Nyberg is 24 pages long and contains 22 numbered
paragraphs. Id. (referencing Docket 108-5).
Chlebeck's discovery requests were served on March 13,
2015. (Docket 108-2 at p. 16). He was asked to provide
responses to 67 requests for admissions, 12 interrogatories
and two requests for production of documents. Id. at
pp. 5-16. Mr. Solon's discovery requests were served on
April 12, 2019. (Docket 108-3 at p. 18). He was asked to
provide responses to 64 requests for admissions, four
interrogatories and three requests for production of
documents. Id. at pp. 5-18. Mr. Landeen's
discovery requests were served on April 13, 2015. (Docket
108-4 at p. 15). He was asked to provide responses to 45
requests for admission and four interrogatories. Id.
at pp. 5-15. Mr. ...