United States District Court, D. Hawaii
CLINTON C. ST. CLASSIS BROWN, II, Plaintiff,
DCK WORLDWIDE LLC, ET AL., Defendants.
AMENDED ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF’S EX-PARTE
MOTION TO APPEAL RULING BY JUDGE KENNETH MANSFIELD RENDERED
ON APRIL 13, 2016
E. Kobayashi United States District Judge.
April 19, 2016, pro se Plaintiff Clinton C. St. Classis
Brown, II (“Plaintiff”) filed an Ex-Parte Motion
to Appeal Ruling by Judge Kenneth Mansfield Rendered on April
13, 2016 (“Appeal”). [Dkt. no. 118.] Defendants
dck Worldwide LLC, dck Guam LLC, and DCK Pacific Guam, LLC
(collectively “Defendants”) filed a memorandum in
opposition on May 12, 2016. [Dkt. no. 125.] The Court finds
this matter suitable for disposition without a hearing
pursuant to Rule LR7.2(e) of the Local Rules of Practice of
the United States District Court for the District of Hawai`i
(“Local Rules”). After careful consideration of
the Appeal, supporting and opposing memoranda, and the
relevant legal authority, Plaintiff’s Appeal is HEREBY
DENIED for the reasons set forth below.
was employed by Defendants from February 2013 to April 2013
as a Construction Quality Control Manager on a hospital
project in Dededo, Guam (“Project”). [First
Amended Complaint, filed 5/6/15 (dkt. no. 37), at
¶¶ 4, 23.] He states that, a few weeks into his
job, a representative of the hospital asked Plaintiff to show
him around the Project. During the tour, Plaintiff, at the
representative’s request, pointed out problems with the
Project. [Id. at ¶ 7.] Plaintiff alleges that,
after the tour, Defendants began to treat him differently.
This treatment included, inter alia: a reprimand for
calling in sick; verbal abuse for calling in sick; and being
forced to work longer hours than other employees.
[Id. at ¶¶ 9-12.] Plaintiff further
alleges that he was subjected to racial slurs and other
unfair treatment based on his race. [Id. at
¶¶ 15-21, 31-37.] On April 14, 2013, Plaintiff was
terminated from his employment with Defendants, and he states
that Defendants went out of their way to ensure that he did
not find another job in the construction industry in Guam or
Hawai`i. [Id. at ¶¶ 23, 25.]
First Amended Complaint states claims for: violation of Title
VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended (“Title
VII”), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e, et seq.
(“Count I”); [id. at ¶ 39;]
retaliation in violation of Title VII (“Count
II”); [id. at ¶¶ 40-42;] violation
of 42 U.S.C. § 1985 (“Count III”);
[id. at ¶¶ 43-44;] violation of Haw. Rev.
Stat. Chapter 378; [id. at ¶¶ 45-46;] and
intentional infliction of emotional distress (“Count
IV”) [id. at ¶¶ 47-50].
February 3, 2016, Defendants filed a Motion for an Order
Prohibiting Plaintiff Clinton St. Classis Brown II’s
Direct Contact and Harassment of Witnesses, Employees, and
Agents of Defendants (“Contact Motion”). [Dkt.
no. 95.] The Contact Motion sought a court order prohibiting
Plaintiff from contacting Defendants’ witnesses,
officers, and agents. The motion also sought fees and costs
incurred as a result of filing the motion and attending the
hearing. [Mem. in Supp. of Contact Motion at 6.]
February 12, 2016, Defendants filed a Motion for Protective
Order Concerning Plaintiffs Requests for Production/Discovery
of Financial Information of Defendants, Its Officers,
Employees and/or Agents (“Motion for Protective
Order”). [Dkt. no. 100.] The motion sought a protective
order, pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(c), regarding
Defendants’ financial information, including, inter
alia, tax returns, the value of certain federal
contracts, and employees’ personal tax returns. The
Motion for Protective Order also sought to quash
Plaintiff’s subpoenas seeking such information. [Motion
for Protective Order at 2-3.]
February 18, 2016, Defendants filed a Motion for Sanctions
for Plaintiff’s Failure to Provide Discovery
(“Motion for Sanctions”). [Dkt. no. 104.] The
Motion for Sanctions sought: the production of discovery
requested and required of Plaintiff pursuant to previous
court orders; sanctions for failure to provide the discovery
within thirty days; and attorneys’ fees and costs for
filing the motion and attending the hearing. [Mem. in Supp.
of Motion for Sanctions at 13.]
three motions were heard by the magistrate judge on April 13,
2016. At the hearing, the magistrate judge orally: granted
the Contact Motion, without attorneys’ fees and costs;
granted the Motion for Protective Order without
attorneys’ fees and costs; and granted in part and
denied in part the Motion for Sanctions, granting all but one
of the sanctions requested by Defendants. [Minutes, filed
4/13/16 (dkt. no. 116), at 1-2.] On April 26, 2016, the
magistrate judge filed written orders in accordance with his
oral rulings. See dkt. nos. 121-123.
district court has stated:
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A), a district judge
may designate a magistrate judge to hear and decide a
pretrial matter pending before the court. The decision of the
magistrate judge on non-dispositive matters is final.
Bhan v. NME Hosp., Inc., 929 F.2d 1404, 1414 (9th
Cir. 1991). However, a district judge may reconsider a
magistrate’s order on these non-dispositive pretrial
matters and set aside that order, or any portion thereof, if
it is “clearly erroneous or contrary to law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(a); 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A); LR 74.1;
see Rivera v. NIBCO, Inc., 364 F.3d 1057, 1063 (9th
Cir. 2004); see also Osband v. Woodford, 290 F.3d
1036, 1041 (9th Cir. 2002).
The threshold of the “clearly erroneous” test is
high. See Boskoff v. Yano, 217 F.Supp.2d 1077, 1084
(D. Haw. 2001). The magistrate judge’s factual findings
must be accepted unless the court is “left with the
definite and firm conviction that a mistake has been
committed.” United States v. Silverman, 861
F.2d 571, 576- (9th Cir. 1988). “The reviewing
court may not simply substitute its judgment for that of the
deciding court.” Grimes v. City & Cnty. of
S.F., 951 F.2d 236, 241 (9th Cir. 1991).
“A decision is ‘contrary to law’ if it
applies an incorrect legal standard or fails to consider an
element of the applicable standard.” Na Pali Haweo
Cmty. Ass’n v. Grande, 252 F.R.D. 672, 674 (D.
Haw. 2008); see Hunt v. Nat’l Broadcasting
Co., 872 F.2d 289, 292 ...