New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

BARNES v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2002-031-023, Claim No. 100753, Motion No. M-64789


Synopsis


Claimant's motion to compel discovery of Correction Officer's personnel records is denied.

Case Information

UID:
2002-031-023
Claimant(s):
JESSIE BARNES
Claimant short name:
BARNES
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
100753
Motion number(s):
M-64789
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
RENÉE FORGENSI MINARIK
Claimant's attorney:
JESSIE BARNES, PRO SE
Defendant's attorney:
HON. ELIOT SPITZER
Attorney General of the State of New York
BY: GREGORY P. MILLER, ESQ.Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
June 21, 2002
City:
Rochester
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

The following papers numbered 1-3 were read on motion by Claimant to compel discovery:
  1. Notice of Motion, filed February 27, 2002;
  2. Claimant's Supporting Affidavit, sworn to February 22, 2002, with attached exhibits;
  3. Affidavit of Gregory P. Miller, Esq., sworn to March 20, 2002.
This is Claimant's motion to compel production and in camera review of the personnel records of several Correction Officers. The underlying claim in this matter alleges that on October 24, 1998, these Officers participated in an assault upon Claimant while he was incarcerated at Collins Correctional Facility. In his motion papers, Claimant gives no indication as to the reason that he seeks production and in camera inspection of these personnel files.

Defendant opposes this motion on the grounds that production of the records requested is prohibited by Civil Rights Law § 50-a.

The threshold requirement of Civil Rights Law § 50-a(2) that "[n]o such order shall issue without a clear showing of facts sufficient to warrant the judge to request records for review" was designated to eliminate fishing expeditions for collateral matters to be used for impeachment purposes (see, Matter of Capital Newspapers Div. of Hearst Corp. v Burns, 67 NY2d 562, 568-69; Alcamo v City of New York, 253 AD2d 408). I conclude that Claimant has not demonstrated the existence of facts sufficient to warrant my review of the Correction Officers' personnel records, nor has he demonstrated that the records are relevant to any issue in the pending proceeding (see, People v Gissendanner, 48 NY2d 543, 551; Matter of Daily Gazette Co. v City of Schenectady, 93 NY2d 145, 154-155).

Accordingly, Claimant's motion is DENIED.

June 21, 2002
Rochester, New York

HON. RENÉE FORGENSI MINARIK
Judge of the Court of Claims