United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Dallas Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
L. HORAN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
case has been referred to the United States magistrate judge
for pretrial management under 28 U.S.C. § 636(b) and a
standing order of reference from United States District Judge
David C. Godbey. See Dkt. No. 102.
April 5, 2017, Plaintiff Samantha Carter served Defendants
H2R Restaurant Holdings, LLC, John Dyess, and Chris Short
(the “H2R Defendants”) and Rad Staffing d/b/a
Trinity Event Staffing (“Trinity”; collectively
with the H2R Defendants, “Defendants”) with her
First Set of Interrogatories, Requests for Production, and
Requests for Admission (“RFAs”).
Defendants and Trinity each filed a Motion for Protective
Order (“MPO”), asking the Court to protect them
from complying with several of Ms. Carter's requests.
See Dkt. No. 171 & 174.
response, Ms. Carter filed two motions to compel in which she
insists that Defendants respond to the requests at issue.
See Dkt. No. 176 & 177. Defendants filed their
respective responses to Ms. Carter's motions shortly
parties have not filed any other documents in connection with
Defendants' respective Motions for Protective Order or
Ms. Carter's motions to compel, and the deadlines to do
so have passed.
reasons and to the extent explained below, the Court GRANTS
IN PART and DENIES IN PART the H2R Defendants' Motion for
Protective Order and Trinity's Motion for Protective
Order and DENIES Plaintiff's Motions to Compel.
Amended Complaint, Ms. Carter brings claims for negligence
and Title VII employment discrimination primarily based on
the allegations summarized below:
1. On October 19, 2017, a Trinity representative sent
Plaintiff Samantha Carter a text message asking if she was
interested in accepting a temporary assignment as a chef at a
catering event that would occur on the next day. She
2. She showed up at the event in a fuchsia-colored chef
jacket. After she arrived, Chef Jeff Quals demoted her from
“chef” to “cook, ” purportedly due to
the color of her jacket. He then asked her to cook macaroni
and cheese over a portable stove.
3. The fire heating the stove would not stay lit. After it
went out for the third or fourth time, Defendant John Dyess
performed a make-shift fix. Defendant Chris Short, Mr.
Dyess's manager, acknowledged that this was not the
proper way to fix the stove but concluded that it needed to
be fixed this way. The stove later exploded, and Ms. Carter
caught on fire. 9-1-1 was not called until about two hours
response to Ms. Carter's First Set of Interrogatories,
Requests for Production, and Requests for Admission,
Defendants filed their motions for protective order. The H2R
Defendants appear to argue that they should not be required
to answer all of Ms. Carter's interrogatories because she
has exceeded the limit allowed by the Court's Amended
Scheduling Order and Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 33. The
Amended Schedule Order explains that“[t]he presumptive
limit of ... 25 interrogatories per party will apply in this
case.” See Dkt. No. 125 at 8 (citing
Fed.R.Civ.P. 33(a)(1)). And, as the H2R Defendants note,
“Plaintiff has propounded 64 Interrogatories to
[them].” Dkt. No. 171 at 1.
Defendants also purport that it is not clear to whom Ms.
Carter has directed her interrogatories because “the
full set of Plaintiff's First Set of Interrogatories
appear to be directed to each Defendant, but then addresses
request[s] to William Hyde, a nonparty.” Id.
Defendants contend that they should be protected from
complying with several of Ms. Carter's requests because
the requests are abusive, served only to harass them, or
Defendants specifically object to the following requests:
Interrogatory No. 17: Mr. Dyess[, what] branch of the Ku Klux
Klan in Texas are you a member of? What is your position?
Interrogatory No. 18: Mr. Dyess, did you torture animals as a
Interrogatory No. 25: Did Defendants in any capacity make a
campaign contribution to Judge Tonya Parker anytime [sic]
after October 20, 2012?
Interrogatory No. 31: Mr. Hyde[, ] are you or have you ever
been a financial contributor to Parkland Hospital?
Interrogatory No. 37: Did Defendants pay a lump of cash to
the EMT's to not complete an EMT report?
Interrogatory No. 47: Mr. Dyess, do you have a psychotic
Interrogatory No. 48: Mr. Hyde, Mr. Dyess, have either of you
ever called a black person, [the N-Word]?
Interrogatory No. 61: Mr. Hyde, has anyone ever called you by
the name Dr. Jekyll? And if so was it Kent Rathbun?
RFA No. 12: Admit or deny that Defendants are [S]atanists.
RFA No. 29: Admit or deny that Mr. Hyde sleeps perfectly well
RFA No. 32: Admit or deny that you have children that are
declared Colored, Black American or African American in your
RFA No. 44: Admit or deny that human life has no value.
See Id. at 2-5; Dkt. No. 166-1 at 14-17.
And Trinity specifically objects to the following requests:
Interrogatory No. 17: What branch of the Ku Klux Klan in
Texas are you a member of? What is your position?
Interrogatory No. 18: Do you train your employees to have
compassion for the human life?
Interrogatory No. 25: Did Defendants make a campaign
contribution to Judge Tonya Parker anytime [sic] ...