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Case TitleACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC. v. NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD
DistrictDistrict of Columbia
CityWashington, DC
Case Number1:2003cv00024
Date Filed2003-01-08
Date Closed2006-03-29
JudgeJudge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly
PlaintiffACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC.
DefendantNATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD
Documents
Docket
Complaint
Opinion/Order [27]
FOIA Project Annotation: Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly has ruled that the National Transportation Safety Board has provided Accuracy in Media with all the documents concerning the investigation of the crash of TWA 800 that they are entitled to receive. At this juncture, AIM's remaining claim was that the NTSB search was inadequate. Kollar-Kotelly first pointed out that AIM's allegations that other records must exist was not sufficient, noting that "the proper test is not whether responsive records exist but instead whether the search was reasonably designed to uncover relevant documents." She indicated that NTSB's affidavits showed that the agency had conducted a reasonable search and then rejected AIM's claim that references in documents and affidavits suggested that other documents existed. She observed that "even if these documents existed at one time, it does not mean that they exist now or that the agency has possession of them." She then pointed out that several documents AIM claimed were unaccounted for were actually included in the agency's Vaughn index. Kollar-Kotelly then rejected AIM's claim that the agency acted in bad faith in regard to the investigation of TWA 800. AIM cited Jones v. FBI, 41 F.3d 238 (6th Cir. 1994), in which the court indicated that because the legitimacy of the FBI's investigation of various radical groups had been questioned the court could at least consider the possibility that bad faith could have tainted the agency's response to Jones' FOIA request. In Jones, the court had remedied the problem by conducting an in camera review. Rejecting the Jones analogy, Kollar-Kotelly observed that Jones applied to exemption claims, not to the adequacy of the search, and noted that "while a requester cannot challenge the adequacy of a search based on the underlying actions that are the subject of the request, it may challenge the adequacy of a search by arguing that the search itself, rather than the underlying agency actions, was conducted in bad faith." She found that AIM had not provided any evidence that the search was conducted in bad faith and explained that "plaintiff's affidavits here simply reflect the disagreement of certain individuals with the conclusions made during and outcome of the NTSB's investigation. Despite the fact that these affidavits express disagreement with the ultimate result, they do not assert " nor do they provide any substantial evidence that would support a theory " that the NTSB had a motive to obfuscate the real evidence at issue and cover up the truth."
Issues: Adequacy - Search
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2003-01-081COMPLAINT against NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD (Filing fee $ 150.) , filed by ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC. .(aet, ) Additional attachment(s) added on 1/13/2003 (aet, ). (Entered: 01/13/2003)
2003-01-08SUMMONS (3) Issued as to NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD , U.S. Attorney and U.S. Attorney General (aet, ) (Entered: 01/13/2003)
2003-01-082LCvR 26.1 - CERTIFICATE OF DISCLOSURE of Corporate Affiliations and Financial Interests of Accuracy in Media, Inc.(aet, ) (Entered: 01/13/2003)
2003-01-143ORDER Establishing Procedures for Electronic Filing for Cases Assigned to Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on January 14, 2003. (SM, ) (Entered: 01/14/2003)
2003-01-144ORDER Establishing Procedures for Electronic Filing for Cases Assigned to Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on January 14, 2003. (SM, ) (Entered: 01/14/2003)
2003-01-235ATTORNEY APPEARANCE. (Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 01/23/2003)
2003-02-136ANSWER to Complaint by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD.(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 02/13/2003)
2003-07-027NOTICE of Appearance by John Harrison Clarke on behalf of ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC. (Clarke, John) (Entered: 07/02/2003)
2003-07-028First MOTION to Withdraw as Attorney by ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC.. (Jablonski, Joseph) (Entered: 07/02/2003)
2003-07-08MINUTE ENTRY: ORDERED that Plaintiff's attorney Joseph J. Jablonski's Motion to Withdraw as Attorney 8 is GRANTED. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on July 8, 2003.(lcckk2) (Entered: 07/08/2003)
2003-10-319MOTION for Order for Briefing Schedule by ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC., NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 10/31/2003)
2003-11-03MINUTE ENTRY: ORDERED that the parties' Joint Motion for Briefing Schedule 9 is GRANTED. Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment is due December 31, 2003, with Plaintiff's Opposition Memorandum and Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment due February 2, 2004, Defendant's Opposition to Plaintiff's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment and Reply due February 17, 2004, and Plaintiff?s Reply due March 3, 2004. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on November 3, 2003. (lcckk2) (Entered: 11/03/2003)
2003-12-1910Joint MOTION for Extension of Time to Brief Case by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 12/19/2003)
2004-01-02MINUTE ENTRY: ORDERED that 10 the parties' Joint Motion to Amend Briefing Schedule is GRANTED. Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment is due March 1, 2004, with Plaintiff's Opposition Memorandum and Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment due March 22, 2004, Defendant's Opposition to Plaintiff's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment and Reply due April 8, 2004, and Plaintiff?s Reply due April 22, 2004. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on January 2, 2004. (lcckk2) (Entered: 01/02/2004)
2004-02-2711Joint MOTION to Stay and Memorandum in Support Thereof by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 02/27/2004)
2004-03-08MINUTE ENTRY: ORDERED that the parties' joint Motion to Stay 11 is GRANTED. This matter is stayed to June 4, 2004, at which time the Parties shall fileeither a revised joint briefing schedule or joint stipulation of dismissal.Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on 3/8/2004.(lcckk2) (Entered: 03/08/2004)
2004-06-0412Joint MOTION for Order for Briefing Schedule by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 06/04/2004)
2004-06-09MINUTE ENTRY: ORDERED that 12 the parties' joint motion for briefing schedule is GRANTED. Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment is due June 21, 2004, with Plaintiff's Opposition due July 15, 2004, and Defendants Reply due July 30, 2004. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on 6/9/2004. (lcckk2) (Entered: 06/09/2004)
2004-06-1513MOTION to Modify the Briefing Schedule by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 06/15/2004)
2004-06-23MINUTE ENTRY: ORDERED that 13 Defendant's Unopposed Motion To Modify Briefing Schedule is GRANTED. Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment is due July 6, 2004, Plaintiff's Opposition Memorandum is due July 27, 2004, and Defendant's Reply Memorandum is due August 6, 2004. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on 6/23/2004. (lcckk2) (Entered: 06/23/2004)
2004-07-0614MOTION for Summary Judgment by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 National Transportation Safety Board's Statement of Material Facts Not in Dispute# 2 Declaration of Melba B. Moye# 3 Ex. 2, Letter from Beverly M. Russell to John H. Clarke, May 13, 2004# 4 Ex. 3, Vaughn Index, Pt. 1# 5 Ex. 3, Vaughn Index, Pt. 2# 6 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 07/06/2004)
2004-07-2715Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply Summary Judgment Opposition by ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC.. (Clarke, John) (Entered: 07/27/2004)
2004-08-2016Unopposed MOTION for Extension of Time to File Opposition to Summary Judgment by ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC.. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Clarke, John) (Entered: 08/20/2004)
2004-08-2017Memorandum in opposition to motion re 14 Summary Judgment filed by ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC.. (Attachments: # 1 # 2 # 3 # 4 # 5 # 6 )(Clarke, John) (Entered: 08/20/2004)
2004-08-23MINUTE ENTRY: Paperless ORDER granting nunc pro tunc Plaintiff's 15 Consent Motion for Six Day Enlargement of Time to file its Opposition to Defendant's Summary Judgment motion. Plaintiff shall have until and including August 6, 2004 to file it Opposition. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on August 23, 2004. (SM) (Entered: 08/23/2004)
2004-08-23MINUTE ENTRY: Paperless ORDER granting Plaintiff's 16 Unopposed Motion for Leave to Late File Opposition to Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment. Plaintiff shall have until and including August 20, 2004, to file its Opposition and Defendant shall have until and including September 3, 2004, to file its Reply. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on August 23, 2004. (SM) (Entered: 08/23/2004)
2004-08-3018MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 08/30/2004)
2004-09-1719Second MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply (Unopposed) by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 09/17/2004)
2004-09-27ORDER granting nunc pro tunc 18 Motion for Extension of Time to File Response, and granting 19 Second MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response to Opposition to Motion for Summary Judgment; Response due no later than October 1, 2004. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on September 27, 2004. (SM) (Entered: 09/27/2004)
2004-10-0120REPLY to opposition to motion re 14 Summary Judgment filed by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 4. Declaration of Robert Swaim# 2 Exhibit 5. Declaration of David L. Mayer# 3 Exhibit 6. Declaration of Virginia Corbett# 4 Exhibit 7. Supplemental Declaration of Virginia Corbett# 5 Exhibit Letter from Melba D. Moye to Reed Irvine (Sept. 16, 2004))(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 10/01/2004)
2005-02-0621NOTICE of Change of Address by John Harrison Clarke (Clarke, John) (Entered: 02/06/2005)
2005-02-0622Unopposed MOTION for Leave to File Sur-Reply to Reply to Opposition to Summary Judgment by ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC.. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order # 2 SUR-REPLY TO DEFENDANT'S REPLY TO OPPOSITION TO MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT)(Clarke, John) (Entered: 02/06/2005)
2005-02-1023ORDER granting plaintiff Accuracy in Media's unopposed motion for leave to file sur-reply to defendant's reply to AIM's opposition to defendant's motion to dismiss (Docket #20). Plaintiff accuracy in Media's sur-reply to defendant's reply to opposition to motion to dismiss, be, and hereby is, accepted for inclusion in the record herein. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on 2/9/2005. (dot, ) (Entered: 02/11/2005)
2005-03-0424Unopposed MOTION for Leave to File a Response to Plaintiff's Sur-Reply and Memorandum in Support Thereof by NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD. (Attachments: # 1 Defendant's Response to Plaintiff's Sur-Reply to Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment# 2 Attachment 1 - Data Management Report# 3 Attachment 2 - Addendum to Data Management Report# 4 Text of Proposed Order)(Russell, Beverly) (Entered: 03/04/2005)
2005-03-09MINUTE ENTRY: Paperless ORDER granting nunc pro tunc 22 Motion for Leave to File Surreply. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on March 9, 2005. (SM) (Entered: 03/09/2005)
2005-03-09MINUTE ENTRY: Paperless ORDER granting 24 Unopposed Motion for Leave to File response to surreply. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on March 9, 2005.(SM) (Entered: 03/09/2005)
2005-03-0925SURREPLY to re 20 Reply to opposition to Motion for Summary Judgment, filed by ACCURACY IN MEDIA, INC.. (cp, ) (Entered: 03/10/2005)
2006-03-2926ORDER granting 14 Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on March 29, 2006. (lcckk2) (Entered: 03/29/2006)
2006-03-2927MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on March 29, 2006. (lcckk2) (Entered: 03/29/2006)
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