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Hirt v. Unified School District No. 287

United States District Court, D. Kansas

April 3, 2018

GENE HIRT and ERIC S. CLARK, Plaintiffs,
v.
UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT No. 287, et al., Defendants.,

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          GWYNNE E. BIRZER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on three motions filed by Plaintiffs. For the reasons set forth below, Plaintiffs' Motion for Leave to File a Third Amended Complaint (ECF No. 45) is GRANTED; Plaintiffs' Motion to Compel (ECF No. 58) is DENIED; and Plaintiffs' Motion to Determine the Sufficiency of Answers and Objections (ECF No. 74) is GRANTED in part and DENIED in part.

         I. Background[1]

         A. Nature of the Case

         The factual background of this case has been thoroughly explored in previous orders and will not be repeated in detail. In essence, plaintiffs Gene Hirt and Eric Clark are community members who assert claims against their local school district, Unified School District No. 287 (“District”), the school superintendent, Jerry Turner, and other district officials for alleged violations of their Constitutional rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

         In June 2015, Hirt attended a District school board meeting when an interaction during the meeting resulted in Turner banning Hirt from all school property. A July 13, 2015 letter from Turner to Hirt noted Hirt's “inability to express [himself] in a civil and socially acceptable manner.” (ECF No. 1-1, Ex. A.) Since the July 2015 meeting, Hirt stopped attending school board meetings, and was later escorted from school property by law enforcement when Hirt and Clark attended an elementary school open house in August 2015. After this contact with law enforcement, Clark claims he stopped attending board meetings “solely because of fearing consequences that may arise from attending or speaking at those meetings.” (ECF No. 63, at 10.)

         In May 2017, Hirt and Clark, proceeding pro se, filed this lawsuit against the District, Turner (in both his official and individual capacities), and five school board members in their official capacities, claiming multiple Constitutional and statutory violations. Hirt asserts his prohibition from board meetings, without an opportunity to be heard, violates his First, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights. Clark claims his First Amendment rights have also been violated, because he now fears attending or speaking at board meetings. In addition, Plaintiffs allege Defendants violated both the Kansas Open Meetings Act[2] and the Kansas Open Records Act[3] by prohibiting Hirt's attendance at meetings and failing to respond to Plaintiffs' records requests when asked to produce a copy of the policy being enforced.

         B. Procedural Posture

         Plaintiffs originally filed their lawsuit against seven defendants (Compl., ECF No. 1; Am. Compl., ECF No. 6), but later voluntarily dismissed their official-capacity claims against the five school board members and the official-capacity claim against Turner (ECF No. 49). Plaintiffs' remaining claims are those against the District and the individual capacity claims against Turner.

         Upon filing the case, Plaintiffs sought a preliminary injunction to enjoin Defendants from taking “adverse action against Plaintiff Hirt based upon the July 13, 2015 letter” and from enforcing the “ad hoc policy” requiring them to express themselves in a “socially acceptable manner” at school board meetings. (ECF No. 4, at 11.) During briefing on the injunction issue, Turner mailed a letter to Hirt on June 14, 2017, which permitted Hirt to attend any meeting or event on District property to which the public is invited, so long as he “refrain[s] from disruptive behavior” and “limit[s] [his] participation in the meetings to the allotted three minutes for public comments.” (ECF No. 20-3, Ex. 3.) Plaintiffs' motion for injunctive relief was then denied as moot by Chief Judge Robinson. (Mem. and Order, ECF No. 41.) The Court determined Turner's June 2017 letter to Hirt “permits precisely the behavior in which Plaintiffs wish to engage according to their motion for a preliminary injunction, i.e., participation in the patron forum portion of school board meetings.” (Id. at 12.)

         Plaintiffs sought reconsideration of Judge Robinson's order, which the Court denied. (Mem. Order, ECF No. 62.) Plaintiffs also sought to file a Second Amended Complaint, which was unopposed by Defendants. (Order, ECF No. 59.) Soon after the filing of that motion, however, Plaintiffs sought to file a Third Amended Complaint, which Defendants predictably oppose. Plaintiffs also filed a motion to compel certain discovery responses from Defendants. (Motion, ECF No. 58.) After a December 22, 2017 conference with the undersigned to discuss the posture of the case and the pending motions, the parties were ordered to participate in mediation. (Orders, ECF Nos. 59, 66.)

         Although the parties completed mediation (ADR Rpt., ECF No. 80), the effort was unsuccessful. Plaintiffs filed a second discovery motion (ECF No. 74) and all pending motions are now ripe for the Court's decision. The Court addresses each motion in the order of filing.

         II. Plaintiffs' Motion for Leave to Amend Complaint (ECF No. 45)

         Plaintiffs ask the Court for leave to file a Third Amended Complaint. The proposed pleading adds eleven paragraphs to their previous pleading, including: six paragraphs of factual allegations (¶¶ 34.b - 34.g); three additional causes of action (Counts IX - XI, ¶¶ 59.b-59d); and two additional requests for relief (¶¶60.4 (6) & (7)).

         The focus of the amendments appears to be both the June 2017 letter, permitting Hirt to attend school events specifically open to the public, and the Court's October 23, 2017 denial of an injunction. Plaintiffs' prior focus had been the District's enforcement of the “ad hoc policy” limiting Plaintiffs' speech to a “socially acceptable manner, ” based on the July 13, 2015 letter to Hirt. Plaintiffs now contend, because the Court found the “socially acceptable manner” policy is no longer being enforced, the District's continued restrictions on Plaintiffs' rights are apparently the result of either that earlier policy or some “as yet unknown policy” articulated by the June 14, 2017 letter. Plaintiffs interpret the 2017 letter to limit Hirt's (and by extension, allegedly, Clark's) access to school property solely for public events. Plaintiffs consider the 2017 letter as a point of “continuing restriction” that has not yet been included in the pleadings. They seek to add three additional causes of action, including violation of Hirt's First Amendment rights (Count IX); violation of Hirt's Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment rights (Count X); and violation of Clark's First Amendment rights (Count XI), all resulting from the “as yet unknown policy.”

          A. Legal Standards

         Under the Federal Rules, the standard for permitting a party to amend his or her complaint is well established. A party may amend its pleading as a matter of course under Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(a)(1), either before the responding party answers or within 21 days after service of a responsive pleading. However, in cases such as this, where the time to amend as a matter of course has passed, without the opposing party's consent a party may amend its pleading only by leave of the court under Rule 15(a)(2).

         Rule 15(a)(2) provides leave “shall be freely given when justice so requires, ” and the decision to allow an amendment is within the sound discretion of the court.[4] The court considers a number of factors in deciding whether to allow an amendment, including timeliness, prejudice to the other party, bad faith, and futility of amendment.[5]In exercising its discretion, the court must be “mindful of the spirit of the federal rules of civil procedure to encourage decisions on the merits rather than on mere technicalities.”[6]The Tenth Circuit acknowledged that Rule 15 is intended “to provide litigants ‘the maximum opportunity for each claim to be decided on its merits rather than on procedural niceties, '”[7] especially in the absence of bad faith by an offending party or prejudice to a non-moving party.[8] With these standards in mind, the Court evaluates Plaintiffs' motion.

         B. Discussion

         Plaintiffs argue the proposed amendment is timely because the request to amend was filed by the November 1, 2017 deadline established in the Scheduling Order. (ECF No. 33.) They contend the amendment is necessary to add additional causes of action and factual allegations to support the additional claims, and they maintain Defendants will not suffer substantial prejudice because this case is in its early stages.

         Defendants oppose the amendment because they believe the amendment is futile. They assert Hirt has no First Amendment right to enter school property during school hours, nor an interest in entering school property during school hours which would be protected by the Fourteenth Amendment. They further argue Clark is not “chilled” by his speculation of an “unknown policy.” Defendants also maintain Plaintiffs' request to amend was unduly delayed, because Hirt received the June 14, 2017 letter prior to filing the Second Amended Complaint (ECF 40). They contend Plaintiffs have no adequate explanation for waiting until now to assert new claims based on that letter or some “unknown policy.” Additionally, Plaintiffs have already been deposed (see ECF Nos. 34, 35, and 40). Defendants argue the addition of new claims-after Plaintiffs' depositions are complete-would be prejudicial. The arguments of the parties are addressed in turn.

         1. Futility

         Of the factors analyzed by the Court under Rule 15(a)(2), Defendants first oppose Plaintiffs' amendment based on futility. As the party opposing amendment, Defendants bear the burden of establishing its futility.[9]

         “A proposed amendment is futile if the complaint, as amended, would be subject to dismissal.”[10] The proposed pleading is then analyzed using the same standard as a motion to dismiss under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). When utilizing this standard, “the court must accept as true all well-pleaded factual allegations and view them in the light most favorable to the pleading party.”[11] Only if the court finds “the proposed claims do not contain enough facts to state a claim for relief that are plausible on their face or the claims otherwise fail as a matter of law”[12] should the court find the amendment futile.

         In their briefs, the parties engage in considerable discussion regarding the futility of Plaintiffs' proposed claims. Defendants contend the claims are subject to dismissal, in part because the claims are alleged in conclusory fashion and because existing law simply does not support Hirt's claim that he has a First Amendment right to enter USD 287 during school hours to express himself; nor does the law establish that Hirt possesses a protected interest under the Fourteenth Amendment to enter USD 287 property during school hours. Defendants also argue that Clark is not “chilled” by his speculation of an “unknown policy.” As to Defendants' first argument, they claim the proposed amendment “contains only conclusory allegations which do not raise a right to relief above a speculative level” (ECF No. 50 at 3). But, the Court must afford Plaintiffs some leniency as pro se parties, and holds their pleadings to a “less stringent standard than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.”[13] Plaintiffs' proposed amendments are not only in a very similar format to their earlier pleadings-which, the Court notes, Defendants did not oppose-but are based upon many of the same facts previously plead, and certainly the same facts earlier briefed by the parties and considered by Chief Judge Robinson in her orders on the injunction issue. Construing the pro se claims liberally, the Court understands Plaintiffs' amendments and considers them to contain “more than labels and conclusions” or “formulaic recitations of the elements of their cause of action.”[14] Interpreting the facts in the light most favorable to Plaintiffs, the Court finds the amendments contain “enough allegations to give the defendants notice of the theory under which their claim[s] [are] made.”[15]

         The remainder of Defendants' futility arguments are more akin to summary judgment contentions. Defendants cite the Tenth Circuit case of First Unitarian Church of Salt Lake City v. Salt Lake City Corp., [16] to contend the school is “not a speech forum at all” and Plaintiffs' First Amendment claims must fail (ECF No. 50, at 4). But the Salt Lake City case was decided at summary judgment, and is not directly on point. And the case appears to stand, in part, for the proposition that the forum's designation as a public, nonpublic, or no speech forum at all, is dependent upon objective characteristics of the property and the actual public access and uses previously permitted.[17] This is information which is more appropriately developed through discovery and argued in later dispositive motions.

         Likewise, Defendants cite three cases from other jurisdictions to contend Hirt does not have an interest in entering school property that would be protected by the Fourteenth Amendment. In Lovern v. Edwards, [18] the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a district court's decision to dismiss Lovern's federal Constitutional claims as frivolous. Lovern was the non-custodial parent of public school children, who was barred from entering school property “due to his continuing ‘pattern of verbal abuse and threatening behavior towards school officials.'”[19] After holding an evidentiary hearing on Lovern's request for an injunction and to determine whether the court had subject matter jurisdiction over the claims, the court dismissed the complaint without prejudice.

         The Third Circuit dealt with a similar claim in Cole v. Montague Board of Education.[20] There, pro se plaintiffs sued the school superintendent, a law enforcement officer, and other school officials after Mr. Cole was escorted off school property and the school board banned the Coles from the public school without a hearing. Along with their Due Process claims, the Coles asserted various other state law tort claims. The school defendants filed various dispositive motions, including a motion to dismiss, motion for summary judgment, and motion for judgment on the pleadings; all of which were granted. Regarding the Coles' due process claim, the court cited Lovern to find the claim lacked merit.[21]

         Defendants also rely on a 1988 Eastern District of Pennsylvania case, Henley v. Octorara Area School District.[22] In Henley, the plaintiff was barred from school property after he and others had engaged in criminal activities involving school students and on school grounds. When deciding competing motions for summary judgment, the court concluded the letter prohibiting Henley's appearance on school property did not violate his constitutional rights.[23] Although the court found that Henley's right to come onto school property did not require any sort of due process hearing, the court did so in the context of Henley's earlier criminal conduct. Additionally, despite finding school officials may act “to protect the student body from harmful and disruptive behavior by non-students, ”[24] such need for action was much clearer in Henley, where the men prohibited from school property had recent criminal convictions involving school property.

         Though this Court makes no predictions about the success of some later dispositive motion by Defendants, the Court does find Defendants' cited authorities to be either non-binding or sufficiently distinct such that they do not prevent Plaintiffs' amendments at this stage. In Lovern, the court dismissed the complaint after an evidentiary hearing; here, discovery is ongoing and no such hearing has occurred. In Cole, the court underwent very little analysis and largely relied upon the decision in Lovern. And, the plaintiff in Henley had an underlying criminal conviction involving the school system, evidence of which was before the court when considering summary judgment.

         Here, the Court is tasked with determining whether Plaintiffs' Third Amended Complaint is plausible on its face, not whether Defendants are entitled to judgment after presentation of evidence. Although the Court recognizes Defendants could present a viable defense in a later dispositive motion, at this juncture, given the lack of binding authority and current posture of this case, the Court finds a dismissal would be premature and therefore cannot find Plaintiffs' proposed amendment entirely futile. The issue in resolving a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss, or the futility of a proposed amendment, is “not whether [the] plaintiff will ultimately prevail, but whether the claimant is entitled to offer evidence to support the claims.”[25]

         Exercising its discretion, and recognizing Defendants will have an opportunity to challenge the sufficiency of the new claims through a later dispositive motion, [26] the Court will not deny Plaintiffs' proposed amendment on the basis of futility. Permitting the filing of the proposed amendment “comports with the liberal amendment policy of Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(a)”[27] where Defendants may later challenge the claim[28] and particularly in light of the lack of prejudice to Defendants discussed below.

         2. Prejudice

         Defendants' sole argument regarding the prejudice they may face if the amendment were permitted boils down to Plaintiffs' delay in seeking amendment, particularly after their depositions were taken. They contend amendment at this point will deprive them of the opportunity to explore the new claims in depositions.

         As the parties opposing amendment, Defendants bear the burden to demonstrate undue prejudice within the meaning of Rule 15.[29] Under Rule 15, “undue prejudice” means “undue difficulty in prosecuting or defending a lawsuit as a result of a change of tactics or theories on the part of the movant.”[30] While any amendment invariably causes some “practical prejudice, ” undue prejudice means that the amendment “would work an injustice to the defendants.”[31]

         Considering the nature of the new claims and the procedural posture of this litigation, the Court notes there will be some practical prejudice, but struggles to discern any true injustice which would occur from the proposed amendments. Much of the facts supporting the new claims arise from the same occurrences as Plaintiffs' other claims, and have been discussed in prior briefing. Discovery is likely to overlap. And, although Plaintiffs have already been deposed, discovery is ongoing and does not conclude for nearly three months.[32] This timeframe is adequate for any additional discovery and provides Defendants with sufficient opportunity to fully defend the new claims. Creative scheduling, targeted written discovery, and narrowed additional depositions could ease any burden resulting from the amendments.

         3. Undue Delay

         In addition to its futility and prejudice arguments, Defendants contend Plaintiffs' request is unduly delayed. To determine whether an amendment is untimely, or unduly delayed, the Court evaluates the reasons for delay.[33] When a party's delay cannot be adequately explained, the “unexplained delay alone justifies the district court's discretionary decision”[34] to deny leave to amend and “courts have denied leave to amend where the moving party was aware of the facts on which the amendment was based for some time prior to the filing of the motion to amend.”[35] But lateness alone does not “justify denial of the amendment.”[36]

         Here, the Court does not find the delay so inexplicable as to prevent its filing. Although these parties have been litigating for some time, Plaintiffs sought amendment within the deadline established in the Scheduling Order. As previously noted, the current procedural posture of the case weighs in Plaintiff's favor. Although the timing of the June 14, 2017 letter would, on its face, suggest Plaintiffs should have sought to include the letter in earlier pleadings, the Court acknowledges the pro se Plaintiffs' confusion and reliance on the October 23, 2017 injunction ruling before seeking to amend their claims. Therefore, their delay in seeking amendment is not unexplained or “undue.”

         C. Conclusion on Motion to Amend (ECF No. 45)

         Applying the standards for consideration of amendment under Rule 15, accepting all Plaintiff's factual allegations as true, and affording Plaintiffs leniency as pro se litigants, the Court does not deny the amendment based upon Defendants' futility contentions. Additionally, although amendment may create some difficulty, Defendants failed to demonstrate undue prejudice which would occur because of the amendment. Therefore, finding that Plaintiff's proposed amendment is not clearly futile, would cause no undue prejudice, and was filed within the appropriate timeframe, the Court prefers this case to proceed on its full merits.[37] In the interests of justice, and exercising its discretion, the Court will allow Plaintiffs to file their Third Amended Complaint.

         IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that Plaintiffs' Motion to Amend the Complaint (ECF. 45) is GRANTED. Plaintiffs shall file their Third Amended Complaint within 14 days of the filing of this order, and the new caption of the case must reflect the earlier dismissal of parties (see ECF No. 49). Defendants must answer the Third Amended Complaint within 14 days of its filing. Plaintiffs are strongly cautioned that future amendments will be met with considerable scrutiny[38] given the previous multiple opportunities to articulate their claims.

         III. Plaintiffs' Motion to Compel Answers to Interrogatories (ECF No. 58)

         On November 6, 2017, Plaintiffs served a third set of written discovery on Defendants. After Defendants responded on December 6, 2017, Plaintiffs attempted to reach Defendants' counsel to confer regarding what they viewed as insufficient responses to multiple interrogatories. After unsuccessful attempts to confer, Plaintiffs timely filed their motion to compel answers to nine disputed interrogatory answers. (ECF No. 58.)

         A. Compliance with D. Kan. Rule 37.2

         Pursuant to D. Kan. Rule 37.2, this Court “will not entertain any motion to resolve a discovery dispute” unless counsel, or in this case, the moving party, “has conferred or has made reasonable effort to confer with opposing counsel” before filing a motion. On review of the briefing, the Court is troubled by the half-hearted and self-serving efforts at conference demonstrated by both sides. Plaintiffs provided untenable ultimatums without consideration of opposing counsel's possible scheduling difficulties. (See Defs.' Resp., ECF No. 64 at 2.) At the same time, defense counsel declined to make either attorney available for a phone call for several days' time. (See Pls.' Motion, ECF No. 58-1 at 4.) Although the Court understands litigation has its difficulties, in this instance, all parties could have presented more genuine and accommodating efforts at conference.

         However, despite the parties' minimal efforts to confer to that point, the undersigned held a phone conference on December 22, 2017 to discuss the pending discovery issues, in which Plaintiffs and defense counsel participated. The parties appear to have conferred following the Court's discussion and prior to Defendants' formal response, and they participated in mediation. In light of these later efforts, the Court addresses the merits of Plaintiffs' motion.

         B. Disputed Answers

         Of the initial nine interrogatory answers disputed by Plaintiffs, six disputes remain following Defendants' supplemental responses.[39] Each disputed request is addressed in turn.

         1. Interrogatory No. 7

         Plaintiffs' Third Interrogatory No. 7 reads:

For the statement in the July 13, 2015 letter (See Bates D000810) that “this action by the Board of Education of USD 287” identity [sic] whether that statement meant that the action was the result of some policy previously implemented by the Board of Education of USD 287 or if the statement meant something else, specifically as possible identify the meaning of that statement?

         Defendants responded: “The statement ‘this action' referred to the previous sentence in the letter, Bates No. 810, explaining to Mr. Hirt that he was excluded from school property due to his behavior.” Plaintiffs contend Defendants' answer is incomplete.

         The first sentence of the July 13, 2015, letter clearly reads “[A]fter your rude and uncivil behavior . . . you [Hirt] will no longer be allowed on USD 287 property”, and the second sentence states Hirt's behavior “brought about this action by the Board of Education.” (ECF No. 1-1, Ex. A, emphasis added.) Defendants answered Plaintiffs' interrogatory by stating simply that the “action” mentioned, in sentence two, specifically references Hirt's exclusion from school property as outlined in the immediately preceding sentence. The Court finds Defendants fully answered Plaintiffs' question as propounded, and Plaintiffs' motion is DENIED regarding Interrogatory No. 7.

         2. Interrogatory No. 12

         Plaintiffs' Third Interrogatory No. 12 asks:

         For the allegation that Hirt's “disruptive and belligerent behavior occurred while he was seated in the audience.” (See Dk. 20, p. 3, at ¶ 14) [Defs.' Resp. to Motion for Preliminary Injunction], for each disruptive behavior event, please identify

a) the date of the board meeting
b) the specific behavior in detail
c) the extent and duration of the alleged disruption
d) whether or not Hirt was asked to leave the meeting.

         Defendants' initial answer stated:

See previously produced documents Bates Nos. 782-86 (Turner's Declaration) and 788-792 (Gene Hirt Documentation) which contain dates and descriptions of Mr. Hirt's behavior. Mr. Hirt was not asked to leave any board meetings due to the behavior referenced in Bates Nos. 782-786 and 788-792.

         Defendants later supplemented their answer to include: “Defendants have no recollection of additional dates of Mr. Hirt's disruptive behavior at board meetings. Defendants have no recollection of the duration of Mr. Hirt's disruptions during board meetings.” Plaintiffs contend Defendants failed to adequately identify the duration of any of the alleged disruptions. They argue Defendants are claiming the events took place, so they must have some recollection of the duration.

         Under Fed.R.Civ.P. 33(b)(3), Defendants are tasked with answering each interrogatory “separately and fully, ” and they may elect to answer by specifically designating, in detail, those records which answer the interrogatory.[40] The specifically-referenced Bates-numbered documents apparently contain dates and descriptions of Hirt's alleged behavior. Defendants state they have produced all responsive documents, and acknowledge their duty to supplement under Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(e). Although the Court has not been provided copies of the Bates-numbered documents, it takes Defendants at their word as officers of the Court that the documents do, in fact, contain that information. If Plaintiffs do not agree with their Defendants' contention that they do not recall the duration of these events, they can take that factual dispute up at a later stage of the litigation. But Plaintiffs cannot compel Defendants to change their answer “simply because they don't agree.”[41] Given the information before it, the Court finds Defendants answer sufficient, and Plaintiffs' motion is DENIED regarding Interrogatory No. 12.

         3. Interrogatory No. 13

         In their Third Interrogatory No. 13, Plaintiffs ask Defendants to identify the federal law which applies to a specific statement in an agenda utilized at a specific school board meeting (ECF No. 58-3, Ex. A). Defendants responded, “Generally, the Board adopts policies recommended by the Kansas Association of School Boards (“KASB”). To the best of defendants' knowledge, this language was recommended by KASB and likely refers to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.” (Id.) Defendants contend they have no additional information to add.

         Plaintiffs' Reply memorandum (ECF No. 67, at 11) indicates that Plaintiffs sent a later request for admission to follow up on this topic, and notes its resolution “will have minimal prejudice” and Plaintiffs are “not adverse to a finding by the Court that this particular dispute, about Interrogatory #13, is prudentially moot.” In light of Plaintiffs' Reply, the issue is MOOT; however, even if the issue were not moot, the Court finds Defendants have sufficiently answered.

         4. Interrogatory No. 15

         Plaintiffs' Third Interrogatory No. 15 seeks:

         For each allegation received about someone being “afraid” of Mr. Hirt or staff being “afraid” of Mr. Hirt or “afraid for their safety”, please identify

a) the date,
b) the person(s) who was/were afraid and
c) the specifics of any explanation for the reasons why he/she/they was afraid.

         Defendants' initial answer referred to previously-produced documents “regarding Mr. Hirt's behavior. Defendants are unaware of other specifics.” That answer was incomplete. However, Defendants later supplemented their answer to read:

Defendants previously produced Bates Nos. 782-786 and 788-792, regarding Mr. Hirt's behavior. These documents contain the known dates of Mr. Hirt's behavior that caused staff to be afraid of Mr. Hirt. Defendants recall that Brenda Fredericks, Trisha Kaub, Audra Altic, and Teresa Hawkins reported they were afraid of Mr. Hirt. Defendants recall that generally staff was afraid of Mr. Hirt due to his behavior. Defendants recall that staff generally described Mr. Hirt as behaving in an angry and belligerent manner. If defendants locate additional information, this interrogatory will be supplemented.

         Despite the supplementation, Plaintiffs contend the answer remains incomplete. Plaintiffs ask the Court to require Defendants to identify the date each of the identified persons were afraid. Defendants contend they do not recollect the specifics for the events, but provided general concerns.

         Although Defendants' initial answer was incomplete, the supplemental answer identified specific documents and names of individuals. The Court finds Defendants' answer sufficient and Plaintiffs' motion is DENIED regarding Interrogatory No. 15.

         5. Interr ...


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