Thursday, May 11, 2017

Court tells Carlos Moore to pay up

A federal judge told Carlos Moore to pay his $3,000 fine after the Grenada attorney asked him to reconsider the fine. U.S. District Judge David Sanders sanctioned Mr. Moore after he failed to respond to discovery requests in a wrongful death lawsuit. Mr. Moore sued the city of Tupelo last year on behalf of the family of  Antwun Shumpert after he was shot to death by a Tupelo police officer. Mr. Moore asked the court to reconsider imposing the sanctions on him.  He said he was affected by several death threats that were made against him in a separate lawsuit concerning the state flag.  The Court was unmoved by his pleas for mercy and had a few things to say to the lawyer.

Mr. Moore blamed his inability to provide discovery on death threats. Mr. Moore made several sensational claims in the complaint as well as in statements made the media (They are covered thoroughly in this post and well worth reading.).*   He charged that the city issued a memo that said it was "open season on black people". The police let a K-9 dog chew up Shumpert.  He said an ambulance intentionally delayed responding to a dying Antwun Shumpert.  He alleged that Shumpert was killed when he tried to surrender and said “It was a modern day lynching.  It was simply an execution.”  He even told the New York Times “They have declared open season on us, and they are killing with impunity.”

Tupelo challenged those claims in discovery and asked for the evidence that supported those claims- in other words, it was time to put up or shut up.  Mr. Moore and his client didn't respond to the discovery requests and then submitted some half-baked, vague answers that were deemed to be more than a little deficient in nature.  The court imposed sanctions on Mr. Moore for $3,000. The court also noted that Moore was using an anonymous phone call to support some of his claims and that Moore fabricated the memo.  He defended doing so on the grounds that he was using a "rhetorical device."

The case then became all about the state flag. The Grenada attorney complained to the court that he could not comply with discovery deadlines because of death threats he received due to his efforts in another lawsuit to get the Mississippi state flag removed.  He argued in a motion for reconsideration:

2) Also, Plaintiffs through counsel, ask the Court to take judicial notice that no other lawyer in Mississippi likely endured five death threats from various sources as well as had a spouse with a prolonged unexpected illness requiring said spouse to be out of work for a month in the last quarter of 2016. The Court is asked to find excusable neglect and no malice under the circumstances. Counsel for the Plaintiffs simply filed a lawsuit and appeal challenging the state flag which has the Confederate emblem, a symbol of white supremacy, embedded, and received unwarranted death make threats which had an adverse effect on counsel’s job performance.  (KF: Yes, he threw in the state flag. Yes, he is that dumb.) The unexpected illness of counsel’s wife in late 2016 also put said counsel behind in his work on behalf of several clients and has necessitated said counsel bringing in co-counsel in this case and others. Even Rule 37 (a)(5)(A)(iii) allows the Court to not sanction a party or counsel if “other circumstances make an award of expenses unjust.” Five death threats and an unexpected illness of the undersigned counsel’s wife are the other circumstances particular to the undersigned that make the award of expenses unjust in this instance. Rule 60(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure also allows for relief from an Order because of excusable neglect. Counsel should not be penalized for focusing on staying alive and caring for a sick spouse. That would be against public policy. Neither the Plaintiffs nor the Defendants suffered irreparable harm or undue prejudice because of  the short delay in answering  discovery.   The discovery deadline is  currently August 4, 2017.

The Court replied to the attorney:

The conduct for which Moore was sanctioned traces back to November 23rd, 2016. On that date, the defendants served their first set of interrogatories, requests for production of documents, and requests for admissions on plaintiffs Peggy Shumpert and Charles Foster.  The plaintiffs timely served Shumpert and Foster’s responses to the requests for admission.  However, they did not serve their responses for the interrogatories or requests for production at that time. On January 11th, 2017, well after the plaintiffs’ responses were due, defense counsel sent a letter demanding that the plaintiffs serve their responses to the delinquent interrogatories and requests for production within ten days of the letter’s receipt. The letter went unanswered, as did the plaintiffs’ extended deadline for serving their discovery responses.
The defendants filed their first motion to compel on January 25th, 2017.  On the heels of  that motion, the plaintiffs served their responses to the outstanding interrogatories and requests for production. Evidently, the plaintiffs’ responses were inadequate in many regards, and the parties conferred in an attempt to resolve the discovery issues without court intervention. A resolution proved impossible, and the defendants filed their second motion to compel on February 21st, 2017. Subsequently, the court noticed a hearing on the two motions to compel, which was held
on March 21st, 2017....

Moore attributes his failure to provide complete and timely discovery responses to two unforeseen circumstances. He claims to have received several death threats during the pertinent time period, which stem from another case involving the state flag of Mississippi.  Moore also explains that his wife suffered from a severe and prolonged illness around the same time.

Although sympathetic of Moore’s plight, the court cannot classify his failure to timely and  adequately respond to the defendants’ written discovery requests as excusable neglect. “While Rule 60(b) allows relief for ‘mistake, inadvertence…or excusable neglect,’ these terms are not wholly open-ended. ‘Gross carelessness is not enough.’” ... Even though he received a letter from defense counsel inquiring about the tardy discovery responses, Moore never contacted them to explain his situation or to ask for an extension of time. Based on defense counsels’ representations at the hearing, a simple phone call would have sufficed. Therefore, the court finds that Moore’s failure to timely and adequately respond to the defendants’ written discovery requests was the product of gross carelessness, not excusable neglect.

The city of Tupelo also said in its response to the motion for reconsideration that Mr. Moore had used these same excuses to avoid meeting deadlines in other cases.  Earlier post.

Kingfish note: I will re-post what I wrote in an earlier post: Can one imagine Thurgood Marshall or even Chokwe Lumumba, Sr. using this excuse to avoid discovery? Chokwe would get that discovery submitted on time and then brag about how he did it despite the death threats.  Whining about them and then hiding behind them is something he wouldn't do.  Perhaps Mr. Moore is not psychologically suited to practice law since he is arguing he can not handle his cases when someone says something mean or threatening about him.  No Atticus Finch is he.

Documents posted below
Order on Motion to Reconsider: Page 1
Response to motion to reconsider: Page 7
Exhibit 1: Page 11
Exhibit 2: Page 15
Exhibit 3: Page 19
Motion to reconsider: Page 20
Order for sanctions: Page 24
Response to motion to compel: Page 30
Motion to compel #2: Page 34
Motion to compel: Page 48
Media exhibits: Page 48
Second amended complaint: Page 74


Anonymous said...

How can this guy keep his license to practice law ?

Anonymous said...

Carlos is the Donald Trump of the Mississippi plaintiff's bar. All talk and zero substance.

Anonymous said...

Magistrate Judge, not district.

Anonymous said...

Unless this guy learns from his mistakes he will fade away. Maybe he should become an ACLU attorney in Madison county.

Anonymous said...

The attempt to compare Moore's inaction with 'what Chokwe Lumumba might have done in a similar circumstance' is incompetent, irrelevant and immaterial. Even Mason's Berger would know that.

Anonymous said...

"Carlos is the Donald Trump of the Mississippi plaintiff's bar. All talk and zero substance."

Yeah - Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch will have no effect on this country for the next 40 - 50 years (nor will the next 2 or 3 Trump gets to appoint to a lifetime gig).

Anonymous said...

@12:55 The hate that some have for our President is eating their soul.

Anonymous said...

Haha he's appointed one USSC justice and you sheep act like he cured cancer.

Anonymous said...

He's named a slew of lower court judges and taken numerous other executive actions. Try to keep up. Of course, if you depend on the mainstream media to keep you informed, your ignorance is understandable.

Anonymous said...

Lower court judges? You can't be serious. And I'm good on my balanced diet of news consumption. By the way, no one gets #triggered like you conservative snowflakes.

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Trollfest '09

Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).

Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.

In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS.

Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

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