United States District Court, D. Minnesota
C. Tostrud United States Judge.
Glenn Kevin Hazley (“Hazley”) was incarcerated at
the Minnesota Correctional Facility in Moose Lake
(“MCF-Moose Lake”) when the Minnesota Court of
Appeals determined that his sentence was unauthorized and
remanded his criminal case to the district court for further
proceedings. State v. Hazley, No. A15-1418, 2016 WL
953051, at *2 (Minn.Ct.App. Mar. 14, 2016). After remand, the
district court set bail for Hazley, and he attempted to
access funds in his inmate account to post bail and obtain
release pending further district-court proceedings. Hazley
filed this civil case pro se alleging that three MCF-Moose
Lake officials violated 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and committed
the state-law tort of false imprisonment by preventing him
from accessing his inmate account, thus denying him the
opportunity to post bail and obtain his release pending
further district-court proceedings. Hazley's claims
against two MCF-Moose Lake officials, Becky Dooley and Kristi
Cisar, have survived two motions to dismiss. See ECF
Nos. 47, 83.
two weeks after this Court issued an opinion and order on
Defendants' most recent motion to dismiss, Hazley filed a
“Motion for Judgment.” ECF No. 86. This motion is
best interpreted as a motion for summary judgment under
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56. See Id. (stating that
“defendants cannot prevail as a matter of law at
trial” and “[t]he evidence and facts . . .
clearly establish constitutional violations by
defendants”). In support of his motion, Hazley filed a
two-paragraph memorandum of law. ECF No. 87. This memorandum
essentially recites the text of 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and
describes the damages Hazley seeks, without much by way of
the facts and law showing that Hazley has “clearly
established liability on the part of both Becky Dooley and
Kristi Cisar.” Id.
have since filed a motion seeking an unspecified extension of
time to respond to Hazley's motion. ECF No. 89. In their
motion for an extension of time, Defendants indicate that
they too anticipate filing for summary judgment at an
unspecified future date. See id.; see also
Forrest Aff. ¶ 5 [ECF No. 90].
relevance to both motions and Defendants' declared
intention to seek summary judgment, Magistrate Judge
Elizabeth Cowan Wright recently issued two case-management
orders. She assigned this case to the Early Settlement
Conference Project. ECF No. 94. She also issued a scheduling
order that, in relevant part, set the following deadlines: a
discovery deadline of October 17, 2019; a dispositive-motion
deadline of December 16, 2019; and a trial-ready date of
April 17, 2020. ECF No. 95. As part of the Early Settlement
Conference Project, Hazley will be referred to the Pro Se
Project, which will attempt to locate a lawyer willing to
assist him with the to-be-scheduled settlement conference.
See ECF No. 94.
Court will deny Hazley's motion for summary judgment
without prejudice to his right to re-file for summary
judgment at a later date. His terse motion and memorandum of
law do not show that he may be entitled to summary judgment.
For one thing, Hazley has not “show[n] that there is no
genuine dispute as to any material fact.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(a). He cites no facts in his motion papers, much less
facts supported by “cit[ations] to particular parts of
materials in the record, including depositions, documents, .
. . affidavits or declarations, . . . admissions,
interrogatory answers, or other materials.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(1)(A). This is understandable, given that
many of the foregoing discovery devices have not yet been
employed in this case. Particularly given the recently issued
scheduling order, which gives the Parties until October 17,
2019, to complete discovery, it makes better sense to deny
Hazley's motion for summary judgment without prejudice.
Having denied Hazley's motion, Defendants' motion for
an extension of time will be denied as moot.
Parties are cautioned that any summary-judgment motion filed
before the close of discovery assumes the risk that the
opposing party will file an affidavit or a declaration under
Rule 56(d) establishing that “it cannot present facts
essential to justify its opposition, ” at which point
the court may deny the summary-judgment motion; defer ruling
on the motion; allow time for additional discovery; or issue
any other appropriate order. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(d)(1)-(3). This
rule serves as a reminder that in most cases, as a practical
matter, it makes sense to await the completion of discovery
before filing for summary judgment. Under the scheduling
order, the Parties have until December 16, 2019, to file for
summary judgment. At the very least, in light of Magistrate
Judge Wright's order that the case be assigned to the
Early Settlement Conference, it will be ordered that neither
Hazley nor Defendants shall file for summary judgment prior
to the Parties' good-faith participation in a settlement
upon all of the files, records, and proceedings in the
above-captioned matter, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED
Plaintiff's Motion for Judgment [ECF No. 86] is
DENIED without prejudice to Plaintiff's
right to re-file for summary judgment at a later date.
Defendants' Motion for Extension of Time of the Deadline
to Respond to Summary Judgment [ECF No. 89] is
DENIED as MOOT.
Neither Party shall file for summary judgment until after the
Parties have participated in good-faith in a settlement