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Little v. B. Mottern

United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania

April 26, 2018

MICHAEL R. LITTLE, et al., Plaintiffs
v.
B. MOTTERN, et al., Defendants

          MEMORANDUM

         Before the Court is Plaintiff Kareem Hassan Milhouse's (“Milhouse”), motion pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b)(1), (2), (3) and (6) (Doc. No. 231), and Motion pursuant to Rule 60(b)(6) (Doc. No. 234). Defendants filed a brief in opposition to Milhouse's Rule 60(b) motion. (Doc. No. 233.) For the reasons set forth below, the motions will be denied.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Plaintiffs Michael R. Little and Milhouse filed this civil rights action on May 19, 2014 pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1331, the Federal Tort Claims ACT (“FTCA”), and Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of Fed. Bureau of Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971). (Doc. No. 1.) The case proceeded under a third amended complaint (Doc. No. 35), and on March 7, 2017, by Memorandum and Order, the Court granted Defendants' motions to dismiss and/or for summary judgment and closed this case. (Doc. Nos. 220, 221.) The Court noted that Defendants' motions were granted in part due to Milhouse's failure to exhaust his administrative remedies. (Doc. No. 220.)

         On March 27, 2017, Milhouse filed a motion for reconsideration, claiming that the Court did not rule on a Rule 56(d) motion filed by him prior to the Court granting summary judgment. (Doc. No. 222.) On May 22, 2017, by Memorandum and Order, the Court denied Milhouse's motion and referred him to this Court's March 7, 2017 Order which denied his Rule 56(d) motion. (Doc. Nos. 227, 228.) On October 11, 2017, Milhouse has filed a second motion for reconsideration pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b)(1), (2), (3) and (6). (Doc. Nos. 231.) In this motion, Milhouse alleges that the Court has failed to address his Rule 56(d) motion and notes that while he attempted to exhaust his administrative remedies, he was “stonewalled by prison officials.” (Doc. Nos. 231, 232.) Milhouse attaches two Inmate Request Forms (“copouts”), dated May 13 and 14, 2014, which he claims support his position that he exhausted the remedies that were available to him. (Doc. No. 232 at 2-4.)

         On March 12, 2018, Milhouse filed an additional motion pursuant to Rule 60(b)(6), wherein he claims that it was error for the Court to grant him in forma pauperis status, and requests that the Court revoke his in forma pauperis status. (Doc. Nos. 234, 235.) The Court addresses each motion in turn.

         II. LEGAL STANDARD

         Milhouse's motions are brought pursuant to several subsections of Rule 60(b), specifically subsections (1), (2), (3), and (6). The subsections of Rule 60(b) state in relevant part:

         (b) Grounds for Relief from a Final Judgment, Order, or proceeding. On motion and just terms, the court may relieve a party . . . from a final judgment, order or proceeding for the following reasons:

(1) mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect;
(2) newly discovered evidence that, with reasonable diligence, could not have been discovered in time to move for a new trial under Rule 59(b);
(3) fraud, (whether previously called intrinsic or extrinsic), misrepresentation, or misconduct by an opposing party;
(6) any other reason that justifies relief.

         A motion under Rule 60(b) must be made within a reasonable time and with respect to Rule 60(b)(1), (2), and (3), no more than a year after the entry of the order in question. Moreover, “[a] Rule 60(b) motion to reconsider should not be granted where the moving party seeks solely to relitigate an issue already decided.” Weiming Chen v. Ying-Jeou Ma, 595 Fed.Appx. 79, 80 (2d Cir. 2015) (internal quotations omitted); see Blystone v. Horn, 664 F.3d 397, 415 (3d Cir. 2011). “The remedy provided by Rule 60(b) is extraordinary, and special circumstances must justify granting relief under it.” Moolenaar v. Gov't of V.I., 822 F.2d 1342, 1346 (3d Cir. 1987) (internal quotations omitted). Moreover, “[t]he grant or denial of a Rule 60(b)(6) motion is an equitable matter left, in the first instance, to the discretion of a district court.” Cox v. Horn, 757 F.3d 113, 124 (3d Cir. 2014).

         The Third Circuit, in addressing whether or not a Rule 60(b) motion ...


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