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Jones v. Waldron

United States District Court, D. Connecticut

May 27, 2016

DASHANTE SCOTT JONES, Plaintiff,
v.
WALDRON, et al., Defendants.

          RULING ON PENDING MOTIONS

          Victor A. Bolden United States District Judge

         Plaintiff, Dashante Scott Jones, presently has thirteen motions pending before the Court. For the reasons that follow, the motions are DENIED.

         I. Motion for Joint Doctrine [ECF No. 65]

         Mr. Jones has filed a second motion asking the Court to impose liens on property and bank accounts of the defendants. In the ruling denying this request before [ECF No. 57], the Court explained the proper procedure to obtain a prejudgment remedy. As Mr. Jones has not complied with those procedures, his present motion is denied.

         II. Motions for Sanctions [ECF Nos. 69, 81]

         Mr. Jones asks the Court to sanction the defendants for moving to set aside default. Mr. Jones considers the defendants’ motion disrespectful and assumes that by granting his motion for default, the Court has determined that judgment in Mr. Jones’ favor is required. Mr. Jones misunderstands the two-step process required to obtain default judgment.

         Mr. Jones filed a motion for entry of default for failure to plead. The Court granted the motion based on a review of the docket which showed that the defendants had not timely filed their answer. Once default enters, the party in default cannot present any evidence or be heard on the merits of the claim. See Newhouse v. Probert, 608 F.Supp. 978, 985 (W.D. Mich. 1985). That party, however, is permitted to file a motion to set aside the default. In fact, the rules specifically permit it. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 55(c) (“The court may set aside an entry of default for good cause.”). Thus, the defendants’ motion is not disrespectful to the Court.

         Rather, it provides the Court with an opportunity to understand all of the relevant facts before entering default judgment, which is a harsh remedy and should be utilized only in extreme situations. See New York v. Green, 420 F.3d 99, 104 (2d Cir. 2005) (noting default judgment is the most severe sanction applied by the court). As the defendants were entitled to move to set aside default, sanctions for doing so are not warranted. The motions for sanctions are denied.

         III. Motions Relating to Defendants’ Motion to Set Aside Default [ECF Nos. 75, 79, 80]

         Mr. Jones has filed a motion seeking relief and a standing order in the form of entry of default judgment for failing to timely file the answer [ECF No. 75], a motion to enforce judgment with a writ of execution and request to deny the defendants’ motion to set aside default [ECF No. 79], and a motion for entry of evidentiary rulings again asking the Court to deny the defendants’ motion to set aside default [ECF No. 80]. These motions arise from Mr. Jones’ dissatisfaction with the defendants’ failure to file their answer and respond to his motion for default judgment, pending at the time the motions were filed, in a timely manner.

         On May 12, 2016, the Court granted the defendants’ motion to set aside the default. The Court determined that Mr. Jones had not established any of the factors required to deny a motion to set aside default and concluded that default judgment, a remedy for extreme situations only, was not warranted. See ECF No. 89. As these motions seek denial of the motion to set aside default, they are denied as moot.

         IV. Motions relating to Perjury Claims [ECF Nos. 73, 77]

         Mr. Jones has filed two motions seeking to amend the criminal perjury charges he seeks to assert against the defendants. As the Court explained in the Initial Review Order [ECF No. 23], Mr. Jones cannot seek criminal prosecution of the defendants. See S. v. D., 401 U.S. 614, 619 (1973) (“a private citizen lacks a judicially cognizable interest in the prosecution or nonprosecution of another”); Sattler v. Johnson, 857 F.2d 224, 227 (4th Cir. 1988) (neither member of the public at large nor victim of a crime has a constitutional right to have defendant prosecuted). As Mr. Jones has no right to have any defendant criminally prosecuted for perjury, his motions are denied.

         V. Motions for Appointment of ...


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