Murphy v. USCBP, No. 15-133, 2016 WL 4179993 (N.D.W. Va. Aug. 5, 2016) (Groh, C.J.)

Date: 
Friday, August 5, 2016

Murphy v. USCBP, No. 15-133, 2016 WL 4179993 (N.D.W. Va. Aug. 5, 2016) (Groh, C.J.)

Re: Request for records concerning plaintiff's Equal Employment Opportunity complaint

Disposition: Denying defendant's motion for summary judgment; granting in part plaintiff's motion to compel production and for Vaughn index

  • Litigation Considerations, Vaughn Index/Declaration: The court holds that "[d]efendant has failed to meet its burden under FOIA and the authority discussed above." "The Defendant has provided almost no information to justify its decision to redact or withhold over 80% of the documents that were deemed responsive to the Plaintiff's FOIA request." "Instead, the Defendant stands on conclusory and generalized statements concerning the responsive documents and the purportedly applicable § 552(b) exemptions." "Plaintiff has yet to be provided with any explanation for why the responsive documents were redacted or withheld." The court relates that defendant's "declaration states that the Defendant sent the Plaintiff a letter, and that the Defendant now considers the matter closed." The court finds that "[t]he [response] letter that the Defendant claims provided such an explanation is far from sufficient, stating only that a specialist reviewed the responsive documents and [certain portions] subject to one of four exemptions." For these reasons, "the Court cannot find that the Defendant is entitled to summary judgment in its favor." "For the same reasons, the Court finds that the Defendant must submit a Vaughn index
Topic: 
District Court
Litigation Considerations
Vaughn Index
Updated January 18, 2017