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Davis v. City of Springfield

January 22, 2010

RICKEY B. DAVIS, PLAINTIFF,
v.
CITY OF SPRINGFIELD, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Jeanne E. Scott, U.S. District Judge

OPINION

This matter comes before the Court on Plaintiff Rickey Davis' Motion for Award of Attorneys' Fees and Expenses (d/e 311) (Davis Motion) and Defendant City of Springfield's Bill of Costs (d/e 301) (City Bill of Costs). For the reasons set forth below, the Davis Motion is allowed in part and the City Bill of Costs is allowed in part.

Davis originally filed this action on August 3, 2004. Davis alleged that in October 2003, the City discriminated and retaliated against him in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) when Chief of Police Donald Kliment promoted William Rouse instead of Davis to the position of Deputy Chief of Police in charge of the Criminal Investigations Division (CID). Complaint (d/e 1), Count I ¶ 13. The case went to trial the first time on September 10, 2007. On September 14, 2007, a jury returned a verdict in favor of the City on Davis' claim of discrimination, but was unable to reach a verdict on Davis' retaliation claim. Verdict (d/e 148).

On April 10, 2007, Davis filed Case No. 07-3096. Davis alleged Title VII violations of disparate treatment, hostile work environment, and wrongful discharge resulting from the City's treatment of him from October 2003, until January 2007, when he retired from the City's Police Department. He also alleged claims against Kliment and Rouse personally based on 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Complaint (Case No. 07-3096 (d/e 1)). After the September 2007 trial, Davis voluntarily dismissed the claims against Kliment and Rouse, and the Court agreed to consolidate the Title VII claims in Case No. 07-3096 with the remaining retaliation claim in Case No. 04-3168. Case No. 07-3096 Text Order entered April 25, 2008.

On August 17, 2009, the Court entered partial summary judgment in favor of the City on: (1) that portion of Davis' retaliation claim in Case No. 07-3096 that was based on actions that occurred beyond the statute of limitations; and (2) all of Davis' disparate treatment, hostile work environment, and wrongful discharge claims in Case No. 07-3096. Opinion entered August 17, 2009 (d/e 265).

The consolidated trial on the remaining retaliation claims in Case No. 04-3168 and Case No. 07-3096 began on September 1, 2009. On September 10, 2009, a jury returned a verdict in favor of the City on the retaliation claim in Case No. 04-3168, and a verdict in favor of Davis on the retaliation claim in Case No. 07-3096. The jury awarded Davis $350,000.00 in compensatory damages, which the Court reduced to the statutory cap of $300,000.00. 42 U.S.C. § 1981a. On October 15, 2009, the Court held a bench trial on Davis' claim for equitable economic remedies. The Court awarded $40,000.00 in equitable economic remedies.

The City has now submitted the City Bill of Costs for $9,871.62, and Davis has submitted the Davis Motion for $610,440.00 in attorney fees and $23,992.23 in expenses. Each party has objected to the other party's request. The Court addresses each request separately.

I. City Bill of Costs

The City seeks $9,871.62 in costs. The City prevailed on all of Davis' claims in Case No. 04-3168. A prevailing party is entitled to recover certain costs unless the Court otherwise directs. Fed. R. Civ. P. 54(d). The recoverable costs are set out by statute:

A judge or clerk of any court of the United States may tax as costs the following:

1. Fees of the clerk and marshal;

2. Fees for printed or electronically recorded transcripts necessarily obtained for use in the case;

3. Fees and disbursements for printing and witnesses;

4. Fees for exemplification and the costs of making copies of any materials where the copies are necessarily ...


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