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White v. Lasalle Corrections Inc.

United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Monroe Division

March 20, 2017

LARA J. WHITE, INDIVIDUALLY AND ON BEHALF OF MINOR V R W JR. AND ON BEHALF OF VERNON RAMONE WHITE SR. ESTATE
v.
LASALLE CORRECTIONS INC. ET AL.

          ROBERT G. JAMES JUDGE

          MEMORANDUM ORDER

          KAREN L. HAYES UNITED STATES JUDGE

         Before the undersigned Magistrate Judge is a motion to consolidate, [doc. #20], filed by Defendants LaSalle Corrections, LLC, Richwood Correctional Center, Lieutenant Ray Hanson, Lieutenant Gerald Hardwell, Captain Roderick Douglas, and Danielle Walker. The motion is unopposed. For reasons assigned below, the motion is GRANTED in part and DENIED in part.

         Background

         Defendants' motion seeks to consolidate this case with Moore v. LaSalle Corrections Inc., 16-cv-1007 (W.D. La. 2016). Both cases arise out of incidents that occurred at Richwood Correctional Center (“Richwood”) on October 12 and 13, 2015.

         On October 10, 2015, Vernon Ramone White, Sr. was arrested on charges of speeding, driving without a license, driving without proof of insurance, and contempt of court. White was then transported to Richwood. On October 12, 2015, Erie Moore, Sr. was arrested for disturbing the peace and placed in an isolation lockdown cell at Richwood. At first, Moore was alone in the lockdown cell. Around 9:00 p.m. that night, White engaged in a fight with a third inmate named Erin Daniels. As a result, White was placed in the isolation lockdown cell with Moore. On the morning of October 13, 2015, Moore and White had a physical altercation and needed medical attention. Both inmates were then returned to the same lockdown cell. On the night of October 13, 2015, White and Moore engaged in a second fight, resulting in substantial injuries to White. When the defendant officers discovered White's injuries, Moore was forcibly removed from the cell. White was transported to Conway Medical Center in Monroe, Louisiana, and pronounced dead that night. Meanwhile, while being removed from the lockdown cell, Moore suffered severe injuries and eventually died approximately one month later on November 14, 2015, at University Health Center in Shreveport, Louisiana.

         On October 6, 2016, Lara J. White, individually and on behalf of her son and on behalf of her husband's estate (the “White Plaintiffs”), filed the instant wrongful death and survival action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §§ 1983 and 1988 against defendants LaSalle Corrections Inc. (“LaSalle”), Richwood Correctional Center, Warden Ray Hanson, Lieutenant Gerald Hardwell, Corporal Officer Danielle Walker, Captain Roderick Douglas, and the City of Monroe. [doc. #1] (the “White Case”).

         On July 8, 2016, Plaintiffs Erie Moore, Jr., Tiffany Robinson, and Tamara Robinson (the “Moore Plaintiffs”) also filed a wrongful death and survival action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §§ 1983 and 1988 against LaSalle, Warden Ray Hanson, Lieutenant Christopher Loring, Lt. Hardwell, Sergeant Roy Brown, Sergeant Reginald Williams, Sergeant Kenneth Hart, C.O. Walker, Sergeant Duan Rosenthal, Cpt. Douglas, Corporal Officer Jeremy Runner, Corporal Reginald Curly, and the City of Monroe. [doc. #1] (the “Moore Case”). Through the instant motion, movants seek to consolidate the White Case with the Moore Case.

         Analysis

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 42(a) provides, (a) Consolidation. If actions before the court involve a common question of law or fact, the court may:

(1) join for hearing or trial any or all matters at issue in the actions;
(2) consolidate the actions; or
(3) issue any other orders to avoid unnecessary cost or delay.

Fed. R. Civ. P. 42(a). “Rule 42(a) should be used to expedite trial and eliminate unnecessary repetition and confusion.” Miller v. U.S. Postal Serv., ...


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