United States District Court, N.D. Mississippi, Oxford Division
B. BIGGERS, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
before the court are several motions in limine filed by the
parties in the above-entitled action. Upon due consideration
of the motions, responses, and applicable authority, the
court is ready to rule.
for Motion in Limine
purpose of a motion in limine is to allow the trial court to
rule in advance of trial on the admissibility and relevance
of certain forecasted evidence, ” but “[e]vidence
should not be excluded in limine unless it is clearly
inadmissible on all potential grounds.” Harkness v.
Bauhaus U.S.A., Inc., 2015 WL 631512, at *1 (N.D. Miss.
Feb. 13, 2015). But, where a motion in limine has been
denied, that “does not necessarily mean that all
evidence contemplated by the motion will be admitted at
trial.” Gonzalez v. City of Three Rivers, 2013
WL 1150003, at *1 (S.D. Tex. Feb. 8, 2013). Rather,
“[d]enial merely means that without the context of
trial, the court is unable to determine whether the evidence
in question should be excluded.” Id. To that
end, “an order denying a motion does not relieve a
party from making an objection at trial, ” because
“the [c]ourt's ruling on a motion in limine is not
a definitive ruling on the admissibility of evidence.”
Cassidian Communications, Inc. v. Microdata GIS,
Inc., 2013 WL 11322510, at *1 (E.D. Tex. Dec. 3, 2013).
Motions in Limine
Defendants have put forth six motions in limine for the court
to consider. Each will be considered in turn.
Defendants' first motion in limine is to exclude
plaintiff's evidence of lost income pursuant to Federal
Rules of Evidence 401-403, and 802. Additionally, the
defendants claim any evidence of lost income put forth by the
plaintiff is irrelevant because the lost income derives from
a job plaintiff was not able to secure two years after the
incident in question. Defendants also claim plaintiff did not
provide income tax records as requested in discovery. The
court finds that a ruling on this issue should be reserved
for trial and addressed if or when it arises. Thus, this
motion will be denied at this time and carried forward to
Defendants' second motion in limine is to exclude any
news media references offered as evidence by the plaintiff
pursuant to Federal Rules of Evidence 403 and 802. The court
finds this argument persuasive as news media qualifies as
hearsay, and the probative value of the evidence is
outweighed by the danger of unfair prejudice. This motion
will, therefore, be granted, and any evidence of news media
coverage referencing this matter is barred.
third motion in limine seeks to bar the plaintiff from
introducing evidence of rising blood pressure associated with
this incident based on Federal Rules of Evidence 403,
701-703, and 802. The court finds this argument persuasive;
therefore, this motion will be granted.
Defendant Hamp's fourth motion in limine seeks to bar the
plaintiff from alluding to Defendant Hamp's official
capacity as sheriff so as to prevent introducing an
impermissible “respondeat superior” argument. The
court finds that this matter should be reserved for trial.
Thus, this motion will be denied at this time and carried
forward to trial.
Defendants' fifth motion in limine seeks to exclude
testimony in accordance with this court's February 17,
2017 order and opinion ruling on the defendants' motion
for summary judgment. The defendants move the court to bar
the plaintiff from introducing evidence of claims which the
court dismissed in said order and opinion, specifically
evidence of a conspiracy to arrest the plaintiff, testimony
supporting the previously dismissed First Amendment claim,
and the plaintiff's state law claims. The court finds
that this evidence should be excluded; thus, the
defendants' motion will be granted.
defendants' final motion in limine seeks to exclude
entrapment arguments which the defendants anticipate will be
made by the plaintiff. Defendants argue that entrapment is
derived from statutory grounds, not constitutional grounds;
thus, entrapment cannot form the basis of a civil
constitutional claim. Stokes v. Gann, 498 F.3d 483,
484 (5th Cir. Miss. 2007). Defendants also argue that Federal
Rules of Evidence 402, 403, and 701 exclude the entrapment
argument. The court finds that this matter should be carried
forward to trial; thus, it will be denied at this time.