ST. LOUIS — A federal magistrate judge has ordered an employment discrimination claimant to serve process on a named defendant by September 22 or she may dismiss the claim for failure to prosecute.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Noelle C. Collins of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri issued a ruling on July 18 in a case brought by plaintiff Kenneth O'Bryant in his case against World Management Inc., a facility manager.
O'Bryant filed a racial discrimination suit on June 16, 2016, and on the same day, filed a motion to waive court filing fees due to his financial situation; however, he only submitted a partially completed financial affidavit, according to the ruling.
He was twice ordered to either pay the fee associated with filing the complaint or to state in the affidavit whether he held cash or funds in savings or checking accounts, and if so, what those amounts totaled.
According to Collins' order, O'Bryant paid a $400 filing fee on Oct. 7, 2016, whereupon the court denied his motion to proceed as a poor person. The court also directed him to serve process on World Management by January 5.
On Nov. 11, 2016, O'Bryant then moved to have a lawyer appointed to his case, which was denied without prejudice. A month later he appealed and again sought leave to proceed as a poor person.
According to the ruling, O'Bryant again failed to submit the required financial affidavit.
"In fact, the record contains a notation that [the] plaintiff refused to submit the affidavit," the ruling said.
The court denied his motion after he failed to submit the completed affidavit. Further, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed his appeal for failure to prosecute.
"As [the] plaintiff’s appeal has now been dismissed and the circuit has issued its mandate, the court must proceed with this underlying open action—[the] plaintiff’s employment discrimination case," Collins said in the decision.
She indicated she would give O'Bryant another opportunity to serve World Management