United States District Court, District of Columbia
MEMORANDUM OPINION DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR RELIEF FROM FINAL JUDGMENT Re Document Nos.: 43, 45, 49.
RUDOLPH CONTRERAS, District Judge.
Plaintiff Oladayo Oladokun moves for reconsideration of the Court's October 28, 2014 Order dismissing the above-captioned action for failure to prosecute and/or to comply with the Court's January 28, 2014 Scheduling Order. Defendants Correctional Treatment Facility, District of Columbia, and D.C. Department of Corrections oppose Mr. Oladokun's filings moving for reconsideration of the case, contending that he fails to satisfy the requirements under Rule 59(e) and Rule 60(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. See Defs.' Resp. Opp'n Pl.'s Mot. Hearing, ECF No. 47. Because Mr. Oladokun has not established that he is entitled to relief from the final order, his motion will be denied.
II. FACTUAL BACKGROUND
On January 22 2013, pro se Plaintiff Oladayo Oladokun filed a complaint against the United States Marshals Service (USMS) and a number of other defendants in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. See generally Compl. ECF No. 1-2. In the complaint, Mr. Oladokun asserts that Defendants were negligent in providing medical care while he was in their custody. See Notice of Removal of Civil Action, ECF No. 1. USMS removed the case to this Court on grounds that the District Court has original jurisdiction, because the claim in the lawsuit is founded upon the Constitution against an agency of the United States. Id. at 2. Subsequently, the Court dismissed USMS as a party in the case. See Order, ECF No. 22. The remaining Defendants in the case were Correctional Treatment Facility, D.C. Department of Corrections, and the District of Columbia ("Defendants").
On January 28, 2014, the Court entered a Scheduling Order requiring the parties to appear before the Court for a status conference on September 8, 2014. See Scheduling Order, ECF No. 32 at 2. On June 16, 2014, the parties submitted a Joint Status Report, wherein Mr. Oladokun requested a stay of the case until August 12, 2014, at which time he believed he would be released from custody of the Calvert County Detention Center. See Joint Status Report, ECF No. 34. In that Joint Status Report, the parties also represented to the Court that Mr. Oladokun was aware of the status conference set for September 8, 2014. Id. at 2. On June 27, 2014, Mr. Oladokun entered a notice of change of address requesting that the Clerk of the Court forward copies of any documents and orders filed with the Court as of December 2013 to him at the Calvert County Detention Center since his home was unoccupied. ECF No. 35 at 1-2. On August 13, 2014, the parties submitted a Joint Status Report in which they represented to the Court that they held a telephonic meet-and-confer on August 12, 2014, and that Mr. Oladokun was aware of the status conference set for September 8, 2014. See Joint Status Report, ECF No. 38.
On September 8, 2014, Mr. Oladokun failed to appear for the status conference, in violation of the Scheduling Order. See Order to Show Cause, ECF No. 39. At the status conference, Defense counsel represented to the Court that she was unsure whether Mr. Oladokun had been released from the Calvert County Detention Center, but that he was still incarcerated when their August 12, 2014, telephonic meet-and-confer occurred. Id at 2. At the time, it was unclear to the Court whether Plaintiff was incarcerated or whether he had been released. Id. That same day, the Court issued an Order to Show Cause requiring Mr. Oladokun to show cause in writing by October 6, 2014, "as to why this action should not be dismissed for failure to prosecute and for violating this Court's January 28, 2014 Scheduling Order." Id.
On September 19, 2014, Mr. Oladokun filed a notice of change of address with the Court updating his address at the D.C. Jail. See ECF No. 40. Mr. Oladokun also requested that the Clerk of the Court send him a copy of the docket sheet and all documents filed in his case as of August 13, 2014. Id. Accordingly, on September 25, 2014, as documented in an internal court docket entry, the Court forwarded to the D.C. Jail both the Order to Show Cause and a copy of the docket sheet. See Order, ECF No. 42. On October 28, 2014, after Mr. Oladokun failed to respond to the Order to Show Cause, the court issued an Order dismissing the action without prejudice for failure to prosecute and for violation of the Court's January 28, 2014 Scheduling Order. Id.
On January 15, 2015, Mr. Oladokun filed "Petitioner Motion to Show Cause to Proceed, " wherein he represented that he was incarcerated at the Calvert County Detention Center until August 25, 2014, when he was transferred to the D.C. Jail. See ECF No. 43 at 1. He also stated that his release was delayed because he had to attend a violation hearing for a criminal case on November 10, 2014. Id. Mr. Oladokun claims that he notified the Clerk of the Court of his whereabouts on August 25, 2014, and that he did not receive the Order to Show Cause until December 20, 2014. Id at 2. Mr. Oladokun asserts that since the mail was delivered to his home, which was unoccupied at the time, he had no knowledge of the Order to Show Cause until the October 6, 2014, deadline had passed. Id. Additionally, Mr. Oladokun claims that Defense counsel "intentionally misled this court, " because at the September 8, 2014, status conference she failed to inform the Court that he was being held at the D.C. Jail. Id. Mr. Oladokun states that Defense counsel was aware of his detention after he wrote to her from the D.C. Jail and after she communicated with his case manager, Ms. Wogu. Id. at 3. On the basis of this alleged misrepresentation, and because of the Clerk of the Court's alleged failure to inform the Court of his detention at the D.C. Jail after he filed a timely change of address notice, Mr. Oladokun requested that the Court order a new status conference hearing. Id. at 2-3.
On April 6, 2015, Mr. Oladokun filed a "Motion for Hearing, " wherein he requested that the Court grant a new hearing pursuant to the fact that Defense counsel knew of his whereabouts on August 12, 2014, and August 13, 2014. See ECF. No 45. Lastly, on May 29, 2015, Mr. Oladokun filed "Plaintiffs Response in Opposition to Defendants Motion for Hearing and or Construes this Motion as Rule 60(b Motion), " moving for relief from the October 26, 2014, order dismissing his case. See ECF No. 49. Defendants have opposed the relief sought by Mr. Oladokun. See ECF No. 44, 47, 50.
III. LEGAL STANDARDS
A. Rule 59(e)
Under Rule 59(e) a litigant may ask a Court to alter or amend a judgment. A motion under Rule 59(e) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure "must be filed no later than 28 days after the entry of the judgment." Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e). The district court does not have authority to extend this deadline pursuant to Rule 6(b)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, which states, "a court must not extend the ...