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Stevens v. Mobile County Board of School Commissioners

United States District Court, S.D. Alabama, Southern Division

December 19, 2019

ROBYN STEVENS, Plaintiff,
v.
MOBILE COUNTY BOARD OF SCHOOL COMMISSIONERS Defendants.

          ORDER

          KRISTI K. DuBOSE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         This matter came before the Court for Final Pretrial Conference on December 18, 2019, in the chambers of the undersigned District Judge. Present at the conference were Mary E. Pilcher, counsel for Plaintiff; and K. Paul Carbo, Jr., counsel for Defendant.

         As a result of the conference, the Court hereby establishes the following deadlines and rules that shall govern all trial preparations and proceedings in this action. None of the deadlines or dates herein shall be modified except by explicit written order of the Court.

         1. Jury Selection. Jury selection will be conducted on January 7, 2020 at 8:45 a.m., in Courtroom 4B of the United States District Court, 155 Saint Joseph Street, Mobile, Alabama, 36602. A jury of eight (8) jurors will be selected; there will be no alternates.

         2. Trial. This action is set for jury trial from January 27-29, 2020 (3 days). Trial shall commence daily at 8:30 a.m. in Courtroom 4B of the United States District Court. Attorneys should prepare to be present daily at 8:00 a.m. to address any issues before trial begins.

         3. Voir Dire & Objections. Counsel for the parties submitted their voir dire and objections (Docs. 50-52). As discussed at the conference, the parties' voir dire will be referred to U.S. Magistrate Judge Sonja F. Bivins.

         4. Witness & Exhibit Lists. Counsel for the parties submitted their witness lists the joint Proposed Pretrial Documents, to which there were no objections (Docs. 44-45). Counsel for the parties submitted their exhibit lists, any objections thereto, with the joint Proposed Pretrial Document. (Docs. 46-49).

         5. Pre-marking of Exhibits; Trial Exhibit Lists. Each party shall provide the Clerk of the Court with a properly formatted exhibit list no later than January 23, 2020.

         6. Bench Book. On or before January 23, 2020, counsel for each party shall provide the Court with a bench book (a three-ring binder is sufficient) containing a copy of each exhibit that counsel anticipates offering at trial. The parties shall allow all opposing parties to review the bench book before delivery to the Court. Counsel are reminded that the bench book is for the Court's convenience in reviewing the exhibits and does not admit the exhibit as evidence.

         7. Deposition Testimony. With regard to deposition testimony designations for use at trial, only Plaintiff has submissions. (Doc. 43 at 16). On or before January 16, 2020, Plaintiff shall prepare a deposition notebook in accordance with the instructions given at the conference and submit them to the Court (a three-ring binder notebook by hand delivery), highlighting the relevant deposition testimony. Defendant's objections shall be filed on or before January 23, 2020.

         8. Motions in Limine. The parties are limited to a total of five (5) motions in limine per side (Plaintiffs and Defendants) with no sub-parts permitted, and not to exceed five (5) pages per motion, which shall address separate and distinct issues. Motions are due by January 6, 2020. Responses shall be filed by January 13, 2020 and shall likewise not exceed five (5) pages in length.

         9. Joint Jury Instructions & Verdict Forms. Joint Jury Instructions & Verdict Forms. Counsel for the parties shall file Joint Final Jury Instructions and Joint Verdict Forms (including any requested special interrogatories) on or before January 6, 2020.

         The proposed final jury charges shall cover substantive issues in the case (i.e., the law governing all claims, defenses, and damages). The parties need not include general introductory or concluding charges. However, any anticipated special charges must be included in the submission. With respect to any charges on which the parties are unable to agree, the parties may submit those charges separately. Each requested charge, whether jointly or separately proposed, should be placed on a separate page. Authority shall be cited for each charge. To the extent the parties cannot agree on a jury charge, they shall separately number and designate said charge and also submit it as a separate filing as a “Disputed Charge” by January 6, 2020.

         If the parties wish to submit special interrogatories to the jury, jointly prepared proposed verdict forms must be filed contemporaneously with the joint proposed final jury instructions. If the parties cannot agree on the need for or form of the special verdict forms, the parties may file separate proposed jury interrogatories designated accordingly ...


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