New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

HOLMES v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2004-034-607, Claim Nos. 109107, 109280, Motion No. M-69271


Synopsis


Claimant, a pro se inmate, requested a trial preference. That request was denied without prejudice to an application supported by medical evidence of a terminal or debilitating condition or other ground for an expedited trial.

Case Information

UID:
2004-034-607
Claimant(s):
DARROW J. HOLMES
Claimant short name:
HOLMES
Footnote (claimant name) :

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

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
109107, 109280
Motion number(s):
M-69271
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
MICHAEL E. HUDSON
Claimant's attorney:
DARROW J. HOLMES, PRO SE
Defendant's attorney:
HON. ELIOT SPITZER
New York State Attorney
BY: THOMAS G. RAMSAY, ESQ.Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
November 22, 2004
City:
Buffalo
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

Claimant has moved for a trial preference for each of the above claims pursuant to CPLR 3403. The following papers have been submitted for review:

1. Claim (No. 109107), verified March 22, 2004, filed March 29, 2004;

2. Verified Answer, verified April 6, 2004, filed April 8, 2004;

3. Claim (No. 109280), verified April 23, 2004, filed April 30, 2004;

4. Verified Answer, verified May 20, 2004, filed May 24, 2004;

5. Notice of Motion, dated October 15, 2004, filed October 22, 2004;

6. Affidavit of Darrow J. Holmes, sworn to October 1, 2004;

7. Affirmation in Opposition of Thomas G. Ramsay, dated October 25, 2004, filed October 27, 2004.

On consideration the Court will deny the application, without prejudice.

Claimant has sought to recover damages (Claim No. 109107) resulting from alleged dental negligence, harassment and retaliatory conduct between July 10, 2003 and February 26, 2004, while an inmate at Attica Correctional Facility. Claimant has also sought to recover (Claim No. 109280) for his alleged wrongful confinement, harassment, and denial of medical and dental treatment between February 23 and 26, 2004. He now seeks a trial preference for his claims, based upon alleged exceptional circumstances in his medical condition, extending to a reported "terminal state of health." Defendant opposes the motion, based upon both procedural and substantive considerations.

Addressing the heart of the matter, the Court is disinclined to schedule a trial of Mr. Holmes' suits ahead of older claims filed by other inmates in the absence of a compelling justification. While a terminal medical condition would certainly constitute a basis for such relief, the conclusory allegations set forth by Claimant herein do not support favoring of his trials over those of other claimants. The Court further notes that its prisoner calendar is fairly current, and that three to four prison trial terms will be scheduled for Attica Correctional Facility during the year 2005.

Based upon the foregoing, it is

ORDERED, that the motion for a trial preference is denied, without prejudice to a subsequent application supported by evidence of a terminal or other debilitating medical condition, or other ground for an expedited trial.


November 22, 2004
Buffalo, New York

HON. MICHAEL E. HUDSON
Judge of the Court of Claims