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Gordon v. Sequeira

United States District Court, D. Hawaii

February 22, 2018

SCOTT GORDON, #A1080674, Plaintiff,
v.
FRANCIS SEQUEIRA, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION AND/OR TO ALTER OR AMEND JUDGMENT

          Derrick K. Watson, United States District Judge

         Pursuant to Rules 59 and 60 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Plaintiff Scott Gordon seeks reconsideration of the January 24, 2018 Order Dismissing Amended Complaint in Part (“January 24 Order”). See Mot., ECF No. 10; see also January 24 Order, ECF No. 9. Gordon seeks reconsideration of the dismissal with prejudice of his claims for declaratory and injunctive relief as alleged against Defendants in their official capacities. He also seeks reconsideration of the dismissal with prejudice of his claims under the Eighth Amendment, because he clarifies that he was not a pretrial detainee when the incidents at issue occurred, and therefore asserts that his failure-to-protect and inadequate medical care claims arise under the Eighth, rather than under the Fourteenth, Amendment.

         For the following reasons, Gordon's Motion for Reconsideration and/or to Alter or Amend Judgment is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART.

         I. LEGAL STANDARDS

         A district court can reconsider final judgments or appealable interlocutory orders pursuant to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 59(e) (governing motions to alter or amend judgments) and 60(b) (governing motions for relief from a final judgment). See Balla v. Idaho Bd. of Corr., 869 F.2d 461, 466-67 (9th Cir. 1989). A district court can also reconsider non-final partial judgments pursuant to Rule 54(b). Dietz v. Bouldin, 136 S.Ct. 1885, 1892 (2016). “[A]s long as a district court has jurisdiction over the case, then it possesses the inherent procedural power to reconsider, rescind, or modify an interlocutory order for cause seen by it to be sufficient.” City of Los Angeles, Harbor Div. v. Santa Monica Baykeeper, 254 F.3d 882, 886 (9th Cir. 2001); see also Fed. R. Civ. Proc. 54(b).

         “Reconsideration is appropriate if the district court (1) is presented with newly discovered evidence, (2) committed clear error or the initial decision was manifestly unjust, or (3) if there is an intervening change in controlling law.” Sch. Dist. No. 1J, Multnomah County, Or. v. ACandS, Inc., 5 F.3d 1255, 1263 (9th Cir. 1993) (citing All Hawaii Tours, Corp. v. Polynesian Cultural Ctr., 116 F.R.D. 645, 648 (D. Haw. 1987), rev'd on other grounds, 855 F.2d 860 (9th Cir. 1988)).

         Local Rule 60.1 states in relevant part:

Motions for reconsideration of interlocutory orders may be brought only upon the following grounds:
(a) Discovery of new material facts not previously available;
(b) Intervening change in law;
(c) Manifest error of law or fact.
Motions asserted under Subsection (c) of this rule must be filed not more than fourteen (14) days after the court's written order is filed.

LR60.1; see also Smith v. Clark Cty. Sch. Dist., 727 F.3d 950, 955 (9th Cir. 2013) (discussing the district court's discretion to reconsider a prior order under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure when there is newly discovered evidence, clear error, or an intervening change in controlling law).

         A successful motion for reconsideration must demonstrate a reason why the court should reconsider its prior decision and set forth facts or law of a strongly convincing nature that induces the court to reverse its prior decision. See White v. Sabatino, 424 F.Supp.2d 1271, 1274 (D. Haw. 2006); Davis v. Abercrombie, 2014 WL 2468348, at *2 (D. Haw. June 2, 2014). Whether to “grant reconsideration is committed to the sound discretion of the court.” White, 424 F.Supp.2d at 1274 (citing Navajo Nation v. Confederated Tribes & Bands of the Yakima Indian Nation, 331 F.3d 1041, 1046 (9th Cir. 2003)).

         II. DISCUSSION

         Gordon is incarcerated at the Saguaro Correctional Center (“SCC”), located in Eloy, Arizona. He complains of incidents that allegedly occurred in June 2016 while he was incarcerated at the Halawa Correctional Facility (“HCF”), located in Aiea, Hawaii. Gordon alleges that Defendants failed to protect him from assault from other inmates, provided him inadequate medical care, and retaliated against him in violation of federal and state law. The facts underlying these claims are set forth in detail in the January 24 Order, and the Court will reiterate them here only as necessary.

         A. Reconsideration of the Dismissal of Declaratory ...


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