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Case TitleVirginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC et al v. Department of Justice
DistrictEastern District of Virginia
CityNorfolk
Case Number2:2014cv00577
Date Filed2014-11-07
Date Closed2015-11-25
JudgeDistrict Judge Raymond A. Jackson
PlaintiffVirginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC
PlaintiffScott Daugherty
Case DescriptionScott Daugherty, a reporter for the Virginian-Pilot, submitted a FOIA request to the FBI for records concerning a May 2013 training accident off the coast of Virginia Beach. Two members of the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team were killed in the accident. The FBI withheld 29 pages entirely under Exemption 5 (privileges), Exemption 6 (invasion of privacy), Exemption 7(C) (invasion of privacy concerning law enforcement records) and Exemption 7(E) (investigative methods and techniques). The Virginian-Pilot appealed the denial to the Office of Information Policy, which upheld the agency's decision. The Virginian-Pilot then filed suit.
Complaint issues: Exemption 5 - Privileges, Exemption 6 - Invasion of privacy, Exemption 7(C) - Invasion of privacy concerning law enforcement records, Exemption 7(E) - Investigative methods or techniques, Litigation - Attorney's fees

DefendantDepartment of Justice
Documents
Docket
Complaint
Complaint attachment 1
Complaint attachment 2
Complaint attachment 3
Complaint attachment 4
Complaint attachment 5
Complaint attachment 6
Complaint attachment 7
Complaint attachment 8
Opinion/Order [61]
FOIA Project Annotation: A federal court in Virginia has ruled that while the FBI properly invoked Exemption 5 (deliberative process privilege) and Exemption 7(E) (investigative methods and techniques) to withhold many of the records responsive to a request by Virginia-Pilot reporter Scott Daugherty for records about an incident in which two FBI agents were killed in Virginia Beach during a training exercise involving a special technique called fast roping, because the agency did not process the bulk of the responsive records until after the newspaper filed suit the paper has substantially prevailed and is entitled to attorney's fees. A year after Daugherty made his request, the FBI responded that it had located a 29-page report that it was withholding in full under Exemption 5. To avoid prolonged litigation, the agency agreed to do another search with a cut-off on the date the newspaper filed its complaint. This search yielded 890 pages, including a redacted version of the 29-page report. In all, the agency disclosed 10 pages in full, 83 pages in part, and withheld 796 pages. The newspaper argued that the FBI's failure to respond in a reasonable amount of time was a violation of FOIA. The newspaper challenged the exemptions as well. The court noted that "defendant failed to respond or provide written notice of an extension within the 20-day period mandated by FOIA. Defendant did not respond to Plaintiffs' FOIA request until over a year later and never communicated the need for additional information or unusual circumstances involving the request." Most damning perhaps was the agency's admission that it knew that there were more records than the 29-page report when it first responded. The court observed that "defendant admits to knowledge of the existence of these documents and their failure to disclose or review for disclosure these additional documents until after this lawsuit was initiated. However, Defendant provides an inadequate explanation for the untimely disclosure of a substantial amount of additional responsive documents six months after this suit commenced despite being aware of their existence at the time of the initial search two years prior." The court then found the agency had properly invoked both Exemption 5 and Exemption 7(E) and had provided sufficient explanations of why the withheld records fell within those exemptions. Curiously, the FBI also claimed records were protected under Exemption 7(F) (harm to an individual), but those claims as explained by the court seemed to refer solely to 7(E) rather than 7(F). In the discussion of the applicability of Exemption 7(F), the court noted the newspaper claimed information about fast roping was already in the public domain and should not be considered a technique unknown to the public. The court's rejoinder was that "defendant asserts that contrary to commonly known procedures such as ballistics tests, fingerprinting, and well-known scientific tests, specific details about fast roping are not publicly available and are exempt from disclosure to protect the interests of the United States." That explanation refers to protecting the techniques, not the individuals using those techniques. The court indicated the newspaper was entitled to attorney's fees. The court noted that "the Court has found that Defendant failed to comply with the statutory response time and reasonable search requirements of FOIA. Defendant did not properly respond until after this suit was commenced´┐Ż"nearly two years after Plaintiffs' initial FOIA request. This suit caused Defendant to conduct an adequate search and disclose all responsive documents, which Defendant failed to do in response to Plaintiffs' initial FOIA request. Therefore, the Court finds that Plaintiffs are the prevailing party as a matter of law."
Issues: Exemption 7(E) - Unknown to public, Exemption 5 - Privileges - Deliberative process privilege - Deliberative, Litigation - Attorney's fees - Prevailing party
Opinion/Order [76]
FOIA Project Annotation: A federal court in Virginia has awarded the Virginia-Pilot $100,000 in attorney's fees for its suit against the FBI to disclose records concerning its investigation of the deaths of several agents in an accident. The agency initially disclosed 29 pages, but after the Virginia-Pilot filed suit the agency located 889 responsive pages, of which the agency disclosed 10 pages in full and 83 pages in part. The Virginia-Pilot initially requested $86,260 in fees, but added an additional $39,504 for the additional attorney's fees litigation. The court found the Virginia-Pilot was not entitled to fees for time spent on administrative proceedings before it filed suit. The court noted that "while it may be necessary for Plaintiffs' attorneys to review actions taken during the administrative proceedings for litigation purposes, tasks completed during administrative proceedings are not compensable under FOIA." The court indicated that the litigation on the issue of attorney's fees was not particularly complicated and that the Virginia-Pilot's claimed hours were excessive. The court pointed out that "the issue of a proper award of attorney's fees is not complex, especially in contrast to the previous contentions in this case." The court agreed that the Virginia-Pilot was forced to litigate further to establish that it had substantially prevailed for purposes of eligibility. The court also found that the Virginia-Pilot could claim time spent consulting with the New York Times and the Media Law Resource Center. The court rejected the FBI's contention that the Virginia-Pilot had not succeeded on many of its claims. The court, instead, noted that "the degree of success in this matter is not purely indicated by the total number of documents disclosed. This suit was successful in procuring Defendant's compliance with FOIA pursuant to the statute's requirements and provision approving litigation for this purpose."
Issues: Litigation - Attorney's fees - Prevailing party, Litigation - Attorney's fees - Entitlement - Calculation of award
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2014-11-071COMPLAINT against Federal Bureau of Investigation ( Filing fee $ 400.00, receipt number 24683025203), filed by Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC, Scott Daugherty. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit A, # 2 Exhibit B, # 3 Exhibit C, # 4 Exhibit D, # 5 Exhibit E, # 6 Letter, # 7 Civil Cover Sheet, # 8 Receipt)(bgra) (Entered: 11/10/2014)
2014-11-072Financial Interest Disclosure Statement (Local Rule 7.1) by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (bgra) (Entered: 11/10/2014)
2014-11-073MOTION to compel preparation of a Vaughn Index and for An In Camera Review of Documents by Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC, Scott Daugherty. (bgra) (Entered: 11/10/2014)
2014-11-074Memorandum in Support re 3 MOTION to compel preparation of a Vaughn Index and for an In Camera review of documents filed by Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC, Scott Daugherty. (bgra) (Entered: 11/10/2014)
2014-11-105Three Summonses Issued with copy each as to Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Attorney Norfolk, and U.S. Attorney General and provided to counsel for service. (Attachments: # 1 Magistrate Judge Notice and Judge's Instructions)(bgra) (Entered: 11/10/2014)
2014-11-246Memorandum in Opposition re 3 MOTION to Compel filed by Federal Bureau of Investigation. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Letter, # 2 Exhibit Envelope to USA, # 3 Exhibit Envelope to Civil Process Clerk)(Exley, Mark) (Entered: 11/24/2014)
2014-11-247ORDER: It is ORDERED that the case is referred to the Clerk of Court for reassignment to another judge in this Court, and is ORDERED to notify all Parties and Counsel of Record of the name of the replacement judge so that appropriate actions may be taken. (See order for specifics) Copies distributed as directed. Signed by District Judge Robert G. Doumar and filed on 11/24/2014. (bgra) (Entered: 11/24/2014)
2014-11-24Case Reassigned to District Judge Raymond A. Jackson. District Judge Robert G. Doumar no longer assigned to the case. (bgra,) (Entered: 11/24/2014)
2014-12-018Rebuttal Brief re 3 MOTION to Compel Preparation of a Vaughn Index and for an In Camera Review of Documents filed by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 12/01/2014)
2014-12-049Certificate Reporting Service by Federal Bureau of Investigation. Federal Bureau of Investigation served on 12/1/2014.(bgra) (Entered: 12/09/2014)
2014-12-3110ANSWER to 1 Complaint, by Federal Bureau of Investigation.(Exley, Mark) (Entered: 12/31/2014)
2014-12-31Refer for 16(b) (tbro) (Entered: 12/31/2014)
2015-01-0711MOTION to Amend/Correct 1 Complaint, and Memorandum in Support by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 01/07/2015)
2015-01-0812ORDER: The Court ORDERS that the Complaint filed in this action be amended so that the Defendant will be the Department of Justice and not the Federal Bureau of Investigation. All pleadings previously filed shall be deemed amended as of this date. re 11 Motion to Amend/Correct re 1 Complaint. Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson on 1/7/2015. (bgra) (Entered: 01/08/2015)
2015-01-0813RULE 26(f) PRETRIAL ORDER: Rule 16(b) Scheduling Conference set for 1/28/2015 at 09:00 AM in Norfolk. Signed by Magistrate Judge Tommy E. Miller on 1/7/15 & filed on 1/8/15. (ptom, ) (Entered: 01/09/2015)
2015-01-2714MOTION for Extension of Time to Complete Discovery and Supporting Memorandum by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 01/27/2015)
2015-01-28Scheduling Conference - Rule 16b held on 1/28/2015. (ptom, ) (Entered: 02/02/2015)
2015-01-3015Rule 16(b) Scheduling Order - Pursuant to the Rule 16(b) Conference it is ordered that the Final Pretrial Conference set for 7/10/2015 at 11:00 AM in Norfolk. Jury Trial set for 7/28/2015 at 10:00 AM in Norfolk. Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson on 1/28/15 filed on 1/30/15. (ptom, ) (Entered: 02/02/2015)
2015-01-3016ORDER - Modification to Schedule. All judicial actions on pending motions will be deferred in this matter until March 31, 2015. All motions and discovery filed will remain pending with defendant having no obligation to respond until after March 31, 2015, for the reasons stated herein. Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson & filed on 1/30/15. (ptom, ) (Entered: 02/02/2015)
2015-03-3117MOTION for Extension of Time to Identify Documents by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 03/31/2015)
2015-03-31MOTIONS REFERRED to Magistrate Judge: Tommy E. Miller. 17 MOTION for Extension of Time to Identify Documents (bgra) (Entered: 04/02/2015)
2015-04-0718ORDER granting 17 Motion for Extension of Time to File. Signed by Magistrate Judge Tommy E. Miller on 4/7/2015. (bgra) (Entered: 04/07/2015)
2015-04-1419NOTICE by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC re 3 MOTION to Compel (Local Rule 7E Notice) (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 04/14/2015)
2015-04-1520MOTION to Stay Discovery by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 04/15/2015)
2015-04-1521Memorandum in Support re 20 MOTION to Stay Discovery and Response to Local Rule 7(E) Notice (Doc. No. 19) filed by Department of Justice. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1. Release letter, # 2 Exhibit 3. Discovery)(Exley, Mark) (Entered: 04/15/2015)
2015-04-1522NOTICE by Department of Justice re 21 Memorandum in Support, Submission of Govt. Ex. 2 (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Govt. Ex. 2 - Part 1, # 2 Exhibit Govt. Ex. 2 - Part 2, # 3 Exhibit Govt. Ex. 2 - Part 3)(Exley, Mark) (Entered: 04/15/2015)
2015-04-2323Memorandum in Opposition re 20 MOTION to Stay Discovery filed by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 04/23/2015)
2015-04-2924REPLY to Response to Motion re 20 MOTION to Stay Discovery filed by Department of Justice. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 4. Second Set of Discovery, # 2 Exhibit 5. VP Article)(Exley, Mark) (Entered: 04/29/2015)
2015-04-30MOTIONS REFERRED to Magistrate Judge: Tommy E. Miller. 20 MOTION to Stay Discovery (bgra) (Entered: 04/30/2015)
2015-05-05Set/Reset Deadlines as to 20 MOTION to Stay Discovery . Motion Hearing set for 5/7/2015 at 10:00 AM in Norfolk Mag Courtroom 2 before Magistrate Judge Tommy E. Miller. (afor) (Entered: 05/05/2015)
2015-05-0725ORDER: re 20 Motion to Stay. It is hereby ORDERED that both parties shall jointly file a status report by May 15, 2015, addressed to the Honorable Judge Raymond Jackson, advising of whether they can meet the currently set trial date of July 28, 2015, and any other matters which may affect the current schedule. Defendant is ORDERED to file its Motion for Summary Judgment, which must include a Vaughn Index, by June 5, 2015. Plaintiff will then respond in accordance with Local Civil Rule 7(F)(1). Discovery is stayed until June 6, 2015. If the Motion for Summary Judgment and Vaughn Index are filed on or before June 5, 2015, then the stay of discovery will continue until further order of the Court. Parties are reminded of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(c) and the potential for sanctions.Signed by Magistrate Judge Tommy E. Miller on 5/7/2015. (bgra, ) (Entered: 05/07/2015)
2015-05-0726Minute Entry for proceedings held before Magistrate Judge Tommy E. Miller:Motion Hearing held on 5/7/2015 re 20 MOTION to Stay Discovery filed by Department of Justice. Matter came on for hearing on pending motion to stay discovery (#20). Present were Conrad Shumadine on behalf of the plaintiff and Mark Exley on behalf of the defendant. Parties argue the motion. The Court inquires as to when Mr. Exley intends to file the motion for summary judgment in this matter. Court makes rulings on the record. Counsel are directed to meet and file a joint status report to Judge Jacksons attention, by 5/15/15, advising of their needs as a result of the rulings made in this hearing. The motion for summary judgment is directed to be filed by 6/5/15 and responses to be filed according to the rules. The Court will enter an order in this matter. Court adjourned. (Court Reporter Janet Collins, OCR.)(cdod, ) (Entered: 05/08/2015)
2015-05-1527STATUS REPORT TO U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE RAYMOND A. JACKSON by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 05/15/2015)
2015-06-0528MOTION for Summary Judgment by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 06/05/2015)
2015-06-0529Memorandum in Support re 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 06/05/2015)
2015-06-0530Declaration re 29 Memorandum in Support (by DAVID M. HARDY by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 06/05/2015)
2015-06-0531NOTICE by Department of Justice re 29 Memorandum in Support Submission of Exhibits 7 and 8 (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Letter to Plaintiffs Counsel, # 2 Exhibit 8. Vaughn Index Part A, # 3 Exhibit 8. Vaughn Index Part B)(Exley, Mark) (Entered: 06/05/2015)
2015-06-0532MOTION to Vacate Scheduling Order by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 06/05/2015)
2015-06-0533Memorandum in Support re 32 MOTION to Vacate Scheduling Order filed by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 06/05/2015)
2015-06-1634Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/16/2015)
2015-06-16MOTIONS REFERRED to Magistrate Judge: Tommy E. Miller. 34 Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment (bgra) (Entered: 06/16/2015)
2015-06-1935ORDER granting 34 Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment . Responses due by 6/26/2015. Signed by Magistrate Judge Tommy E. Miller and filed on 6/19/15. (tbro) (Entered: 06/19/2015)
2015-06-1936Memorandum in Opposition re 32 MOTION to Vacate Scheduling Order filed by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/19/2015)
2015-06-2237TRANSCRIPT of Motion proceedings held on 5/7/15, before Judge Tommy E. Miller, Court Reporter/Transcriber Janet Collins, Telephone number 757-222-7072. NOTICE RE REDACTION OF TRANSCRIPTS: The parties have thirty(30) calendar days to file with the Court a Notice of Intent to Request Redaction of this transcript. If no such Notice is filed, the transcript will be made remotely electronically available to the public without redaction after 90 calendar days. The policy is located on our website at www.vaed.uscourts.gov Transcript may be viewed at the court public terminal or purchased through the court reporter/transcriber before the deadline for Release of Transcript Restriction. After that date it may be obtained through PACER Redaction Request due 7/22/2015. Redacted Transcript Deadline set for 8/24/2015. Release of Transcript Restriction set for 9/21/2015.(collins, janet) (Entered: 06/22/2015)
2015-06-2538REPLY to Response to Motion re 32 MOTION to Vacate Scheduling Order filed by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 06/25/2015)
2015-06-2639MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/26/2015)
2015-06-2640Memorandum in Support re 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit filed by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2, # 3 Exhibit 3, # 4 Exhibit 4)(Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/26/2015)
2015-06-2641Memorandum in Opposition re 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2, # 3 Exhibit 3, # 4 Exhibit 4)(Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/26/2015)
2015-06-2642Declaration re 41 Memorandum in Opposition, 40 Memorandum in Support, (Scott Daugherty Declaration) by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2)(Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/26/2015)
2015-06-2643Declaration re 41 Memorandum in Opposition, 40 Memorandum in Support, (Patricia A. Yoder Declaration) by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2, # 3 Exhibit 3)(Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/26/2015)
2015-06-2644MOTION to Lift Stay on Discovery, to Expedite Responses to the Discovery that has been Filed, and to Allow the Deposition of the Individual Who Made the Decisions Involved in this Lawsuit by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/26/2015)
2015-06-2645Memorandum in Support re 44 MOTION to Lift Stay on Discovery, to Expedite Responses to the Discovery that has been Filed, and to Allow the Deposition of the Individual Who Made the Decisions Involved in this Lawsuit filed by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 06/26/2015)
2015-07-0246REPLY to Response to Motion re 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 07/02/2015)
2015-07-0247Request for Hearing by Department of Justice re 32 MOTION to Vacate Scheduling Order (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 07/02/2015)
2015-07-0648MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit by Department of Justice. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Exley, Mark) (Entered: 07/06/2015)
2015-07-07MOTIONS REFERRED to Magistrate Judge: Tommy E. Miller. 48 MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit (bgra) (Entered: 07/07/2015)
2015-07-0749ORDER denying 32 Motion to Vacate. Defendant's motion is DENIED.However, in the interest of judicial economy, the Final Pretrial Conference scheduled for July 10, 2015 and the trial date of July 28, 2015 are hereby CONTINUED pending the Court's determination of Defendant's Summary Judgment motion which was filed on June 5, 2015. (ECF No. 28.) In the event a trial is necessary in this action, the Court will reschedule such a trial withthe Parties. Copies distributed to all counsel of record.Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson on 7/6/2015. (bgra, ) (Entered: 07/07/2015)
2015-07-0750ORDER granting 48 Motion for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply re 48 MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit . It is ORDERED that Defendant shall have through andincluding Friday, July 17, 2015, to file response to Plaintiffs' Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 39). Plaintiffs' consent to this extension shall in no way prejudice Plaintiffs' positions in this case and will not be utilized by Defendant in support of any issue presented to the Court, including without limitation, the issue whether the Scheduling Order should be vacated.Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson on 7/7/15. (bgra) (Entered: 07/07/2015)
2015-07-1051Memorandum in Opposition re 44 MOTION to Lift Stay on Discovery, to Expedite Responses to the Discovery that has been Filed, and to Allow the Deposition of the Individual Who Made the Decisions Involved in this Lawsuit filed by Department of Justice. (Exley, Mark) (Entered: 07/10/2015)
2015-07-1652Reply to Motion re 44 MOTION to Lift Stay on Discovery, to Expedite Responses to the Discovery that has been Filed, and to Allow the Deposition of the Individual Who Made the Decisions Involved in this Lawsuit (Reply in Support of Motion to Lift Stay on Discovery, etc.) filed by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 07/16/2015)
2015-07-1753Memorandum in Opposition re 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit filed by Department of Justice. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 9. Second Declaration of Hardy, # 2 Exhibit 10. Email January 20, 2015)(Exley, Mark) (Entered: 07/17/2015)
2015-07-2254Consent MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 53 Memorandum in Opposition, by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 07/22/2015)
2015-07-2255ORDER granting 54 Motion for Extension of Time to File Reply to Defendant's Memorandum in Opposition to Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment. Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson on July 22, 2015. (Entered: 07/22/2015)
2015-07-2756Rebuttal Brief re 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit filed by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC. (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 07/27/2015)
2015-07-2857Request for Hearing by Scott Daugherty, Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC re 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment , 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit , 44 MOTION to Lift Stay on Discovery, to Expedite Responses to the Discovery that has been Filed, and to Allow the Deposition of the Individual Who Made the Decisions Involved in this Lawsuit (Shumadine, Conrad) (Entered: 07/28/2015)
2015-09-2358ORDER finding as moot 3 Motion to Compel preparation of Vaughn index and court review. The Court has matter of review under consideration. Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson on September 15, 2015. (Entered: 09/23/2015)
2015-09-2359ORDER finding as moot 14 Motion for Extension of Time to Complete Discovery.Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson on September 15, 2015. (Entered: 09/23/2015)
2015-10-29Set Hearing as to pending motions. Motion Hearing set for 11/5/2015 at 10:00 AM in Norfolk Courtroom 4 before District Judge Raymond A. Jackson. (ptom, ) (Entered: 10/29/2015)
2015-11-0560Motion Hearing before District Judge Raymond A. Jackson held on 11/5/2015 re 28 MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by Department of Justice, 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit filed by Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, LLC, Scott Daugherty. Attorney Brett Spain appeared on behalf of the Plaintiffs. Mark Exley, AUSA appeared on behalf of the Defendant. Comments of the Court. Argument of counsel heard. Court takes matter under advisement. Court adjourned.(Court Reporter Janet Collins, OCR.)(ptom, ) (Entered: 11/05/2015)
2015-11-2561MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER: granting in part and denying in part 28 Motion for Summary Judgment; granting in part and denying in part 39 MOTION for Summary Judgment That Defendant has Violated the Freedom of Information Act and that Plaintiffs are the Prevailing Parties in this Suit ; denying 44 Motion to Lift Stay on Discovery, to Expedite Responses to the Discovery that has been Filed, and to Allow the Deposition of the Individual Who Made the Decisions Involved in this Lawsuit. Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment is DENIED IN PART and GRANTED IN PART. The Court finds Defendant violated FOIA's statutory time to respond and failed to initially conduct a reasonable search in response to Plaintiffs' FOIA request. Plaintiffs' Motion for Summary Judgment is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART. The Court finds that Plaintiffs are the prevailing party, but Defendant properly withheld exempt material and an in camera inspection is declined. Plaintiffs' Motion to Lift Stay on Discovery is DENIED. Plaintiffs shall file documentation to support their request for attorney's fees within FOURTEEN (14) DAYS) of this Order. Signed by District Judge Raymond A. Jackson on 11/25/2015. (bgra) (Entered: 11/25/2015)
2015-11-2562CLERK'S JUDGMENT. Signed by Clerk on 11/25/2015. (bgra) (Entered: 11/25/2015)
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by FOIA Project Staff