Wright v. Hughes

U.S. DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
Civil Practice

New York Law Journal

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Judge Naomi Buchwald

Wright was an inmate at Rikers Island's George R. Vierno Center between March 1 until Aug. 4, 2010, when he was transferred to the Anna M. Kross Center. Wright's pro se Feb. 12, 2012, complaint under 42 USC §1983 charged correction officer Hughes and captain Logan with excessive force. He repeatedly failed to respond to discovery requests, despite the court's July 5 warning that noncompliance could result in his suit's dismissal for failure to prosecute. Noting its significant efforts to ensure that Wright received all notices and mailings, the court granted defendants' motion to dismiss his complaint under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 37(d) and 41(b). Discussing the factors for dismissal under both rules—and noting that he deliberately ignored defendants' discovery requests despite confirming their receipt—the court found Wright's consistent, willful refusals to participate in litigation warranted dismissal with prejudice. Not only did Wright's failure to respond prevent defendants from developing their defenses, his "willful disobedience" of court admonitions to participate suggested that no sanction other than dismissal could effectively induce his compliance with future court orders and the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.

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