United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
G. WILKERSON, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
pending before the Court are the Motion for Recruitment of
Counsel filed by Plaintiff, Scott Smado, on February 27, 2018
(Doc. 35), the Motion to Compel filed by Plaintiff on March
19, 2018 (Do. 44), the Motion for Leave to File Amended
Response filed by Plaintiff on April 6, 2018 (Doc. 51), and
the Motion to Compel filed by Plaintiff on April 9, 2018
(Doc. 52). The Motion for Recruitment of Counsel is
DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE (Doc. 35), the
Motions to Compel are DENIED WITHOUT
PREJUDICE (Docs. 44 and 52), and the Motion to Leave
to File Amended Response is GRANTED (Doc.
51). Motion for Recruitment of Counsel (Doc. 35)
has no constitutional nor statutory right to a
Court-appointed attorney in this matter. See Pruitt v.
Mote, 503 F.3d 647, 649 (7th Cir. 2007). However, 28
U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1) provides that the Court “may
request an attorney to represent any person unable to afford
counsel.” Prior to making such a request, the Court
must first determine whether Plaintiff has made reasonable
efforts to secure counsel without Court intervention (or
whether has he been effectively prevented from doing so).
Jackson v. County of McLean, 953 F.2d 1070, 1073
(7th Cir. 1992). If he has, then the Court next considers
whether, “given the difficulty of the case, [does] the
plaintiff appear to be competent to try it himself . . .
.” Farmer v. Haas, 990 F.2d 319, 321-322 (7th
Cir. 1993); Pruitt, 503 F.3d at 655 (“the
question is whether the difficulty of the case - factually
and legally - exceeds the particular plaintiff's capacity
as a layperson to coherently present it to the judge or jury
himself.”). In order to make such a determination, the
Court may consider, among other things, the complexity of the
issues presented and the Plaintiff's education, skill,
and experience as revealed by the record. Pruitt,
503 F.3d at 655-656. Ultimately, the Court must “take
account of all [relevant] evidence in the record” and
determine whether Plaintiff has the capacity to litigate this
matter without the assistance of counsel. Navejar v.
Iyiola, 718 F.3d 692, 696 (7th Cir. 2013).
has made a reasonable attempt to acquire counsel prior to
seeking Court assistance. However, counsel will not be
recruited in this matter at this time. It is clear that
Plaintiff is capable of reading and writing in English and
that he is able to articulate his claims in pleadings.
Plaintiff's documents are supported by citation to legal
authority and relevant argument. While the claims in this
matter relate to Plaintiff's medical care, it appears
that he is capable of seeking discovery, that he is aware of
the events in this case, and that he is otherwise capable of
pursing discovery. Moreover, the Court has had an opportunity
to observe Plaintiff and finds that he appears competent to
litigate this matter. Therefore, it appears that Plaintiff is
capable of litigating his matter without the assistance of
counsel at this time. Plaintiff's request for counsel is
DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE Motions to
Compel (Docs. 44 and 52)
first motion to compel, Plaintiff states that
“Defendants” failed to provide complete initial
disclosures by the March 6, 2018 deadline contained in the
Scheduling Order (Doc. 29).He states that he only received
grievances and counselor logs on that date. It is unclear
from the motion which Defendant Plaintiff is referring to -
Brookhart, James, or Rice. Only Brookhart has responded to
the Motion (Doc. 49). In that response, Brookhart offers no
excuse as to why he did not timely serve initial disclosures.
He only indicates, in a notice, that there were served more
than 3 weeks late (Doc. 48). The Court finds such a response
troubling. The remaining Defendants, James and Rice, did not
respond to the motion. In his second motion to compel,
Plaintiff states that Defendant Brookhart did not provide all
of the initial disclosures required.
hearing held on April 26, 2018, Defendants represented that
they have now provided all initial disclosures that are due.
While the Court does not condone tardy discovery, Plaintiff
suffered no prejudice as a result of the late responses.
Therefore, these motions are DENIED WITHOUT
PREJUDICE. Defendants shall ensure that discovery
responses are served in a timely manner in the future.
to Leave to File Amended Response (Doc. 51)
seeks to amend his response to Defendant James' motion
for summary judgment on the issue of exhaustion (Doc. 36).
The Motion is GRANTED and the Clerk of Court
is DIRECTED to file his amended response
forthwith. The Court will consider the document.
 The Scheduling Order does not refer to
these items as “initial disclosures.” However, it
contains a list of documents and information that Defendants
must produce by March 6, 2018, prior ...