United States District Court, W.D. Oklahoma
CHARLES B. GOODWIN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Richard Dopp, an Oklahoma prisoner appearing pro se and
proceeding in forma pauperis, has filed
this action seeking relief under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for
violations of his federal constitutional rights. See
generally Am. Compl. (Doc. Nos. 9 to 9-9).
Plaintiff's Amended Complaint names ten individual
Defendants: Buddy Honaker, Theresa Sellers, Joel McCurdy,
Stephen Paine, Shirley May, Laura Neefe, Bob Thompson,
Jeffrey Troutt, a Ms. Baird, and a Dr. Neau. See Id.
at 1, 4-6. Defendants Honaker, May, McCurdy, Thompson, and
Troutt are medical professionals employed by the Oklahoma
Department of Corrections (“ODOC”), which
operates North Fork Correctional Center (“NFCC”)
in Sayre, Oklahoma. See Id. at 4-6. Defendants
Baird, Neau, Neefe, Paine, and Sellers are medical
professionals currently or formerly employed by Corrections
Corporation of America (“CCA”), which operates
Cimarron Correctional Facility (“CCF”) in
Cushing, Oklahoma, under a contract with ODOC. See
id. at 5-6; Sellers Return (Doc. No. 26) at 1. The
matter is currently before the Court on Plaintiff's
motion seeking limited discovery and an extension of time to
serve Defendants Sellers and Troutt. Pl.'s Mot. (Doc. No.
45) at 1-3; Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(m).
April 27, 2017, the undersigned issued an Order directing
Plaintiff to cause a copy of his Amended Complaint, along
with an executed summons issued by the Court Clerk, to be
served on each named Defendant in accordance with Rule 4 of
the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Order Requiring Serv.
& Special R. (Doc. No. 10) at 1-4. The order also
authorized the United States Marshals Service
(“USMS”) to attempt service on each Defendant for
whom Plaintiff properly completed a request for the issuance
of summons. Id. at 2. With this assistance,
Plaintiff had 90 days from the date of the Order- i.e., until
July 26, 2017-to serve each Defendant and to ensure that a
waiver or proof of service for each Defendant was filed with
the Court. See Id. The Court has received waivers or
executed returns of service for nine of the ten named
Defendants, and counsel have entered their appearances on
behalf of those individuals. See generally Entries
of Appearance by Lexie O'Brien (Doc. Nos. 27, 41, 43) (on
behalf of Defendants Honaker, McCurdy, May, Thompson, and
Troutt); Entry of Appearance by Darrell Moore (Doc. No. 32)
(on behalf of Defendants Baird, Neau, Neefe, and Paine).
the summons for Theresa Sellers was returned unexecuted with
a note certifying that the Deputy U.S. Marshal was
“unable to locate” Ms. Sellers because she was
“no longer at [the] facility” and, despite
Plaintiff's prediction that “CCF ha[d] info as to
her place of residence, ” there was “no
forwarding address” for Ms. Sellers. Sellers Return at
1. Plaintiff now seeks a court order directing the “CCA
& ODOC Defs.” to “provid[e] contact
information” that will allow Plaintiff, through the
USMS, to serve process on Defendants Sellers and Troutt.
Pl.'s Mot. at 2. There is some indication that Plaintiff
tried to obtain this information on his own, but that
officials with “CCF/CCA and ODOC refuse[d] to
provide” the information to Plaintiff directly.
Id. at 2. Plaintiff also seeks an additional 90 days
to file waivers or proofs of service for Defendants Sellers
and Troutt. Id. Plaintiff's motion (Doc. No. 45)
is hereby GRANTED in part and DENIED in part as outlined
requests as they pertain to Defendant Troutt are DENIED. Such
requests are moot because Defendant Troutt has been served.
See Entry of Appearance by Lexie O'Brien (Doc.
No. 43) at 1 (filed July 14, 2017); Troutt Return (Doc. No.
38) at 1 (filed June 30, 2017).
requests as they pertain to Defendant Sellers are GRANTED IN
PART. Although service is ultimately Plaintiff's
responsibility, the Court understands that it is often
“unreasonable to expect incarcerated and unrepresented
prison-litigants to provide the current addresses” of
prison employees for the purpose of service. See
Richardson v. Johnson, 598 F.3d 734, 739-40 (11th Cir.
2010); see also Morrow v. Jones, No. CIV-09-633-M
(W.D. Okla. Nov. 2, 2009). The Court also understands that
providing home addresses of current or former prison
employees to an incarcerated person raises security concerns.
Balancing these considerations, as well as the fact that
judicial efficiency requires this case to move forward,
Plaintiff's request for “limited discovery”
is granted to the following extent:
1. Plaintiff's request that he be given access to any
available information regarding Defendant Sellers' last
known home address is denied.
2. If any Defendant possesses personal knowledge or records
reflecting the last known home addresses of Theresa Sellers,
that Defendant is ordered to file the address, under seal,
with the Court by August 17, 2017.
3. No Defendant or attorney is required to take any action to
determine Ms. Sellers' last known home addresses from any
outside source; rather, if no such information is possessed
by a Defendant, he or she should file a notice by the above
deadline advising Plaintiff and the Court of that fact.
Defendants may file joint notices.
4. Upon receipt of an address for Ms. Sellers filed in
accordance with the above instructions, the Court Clerk is
directed to provide the address to the USMS in a manner that
ensures its confidentiality, along with a copy of the Amended
Complaint (Doc. Nos. 9 to 9-9), the Court's April 27,
2017 Order (Doc. No. 10), this Order, and a summons for
service upon Theresa Sellers.
5. The USMS will ensure that any address provided for Theresa
Sellers remains confidential and does not appear on any
document sent by the USMS to Plaintiff or filed with the
Court, including any Process Receipt and Return Form
6. For good cause shown, Plaintiff's request for an
additional 90 days to file a waiver or proof of service as to
Defendant Sellers is GRANTED in part. See Fed. R.
Civ. P. 4(d)(4), (l), (m); Espinoza v. United
States,52 F.3d 838, 841 (10th Cir. 1995). Plaintiffs
Rule 4(m) deadline is hereby STAYED. Upon receipt of the
information discussed above, the Court may ...