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Bright v. Tunica County School District

United States District Court, N.D. Mississippi, Oxford Division

August 29, 2017

MATTIE BRIGHT, as Guardian and next of kin for her daughter, Jane Doe PLAINTIFF
v.
TUNICA COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT, DEFENDANTS

          ORDER

          DEBRA M. BROWN, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         Before the Court in this civil rights action is Mattie Bright's motion to seal seven exhibits to her response to Bernard Stephen Chandler's motion for summary judgment. Doc. #74.

         I Procedural History

         On August 24, 2016, Mattie Bright filed an amended complaint on behalf of her daughter, Jane Doe, in the Circuit Court of Tunica County, Mississippi. Doc. #2. The amended complaint, which asserts claims under Title IX and 42 U.S.C. § 1983, names as defendants (1) Tunica County School District; (2) Bernard Stephen Chandler, the Superintendent of the District, in his official and individual capacities; (3) Milton Hardrict, the principal at Coahoma Agricultural High School, in his official and individual capacities; (4) Stanley Ellis, the Assistant Superintendent of the District and the District's Title IX Coordinator, in his official and individual capacities; and (5) Brittany Brown, a teacher in the District, in her official and individual capacities. The amended complaint alleges the various defendants are liable for a sexual assault and subsequent harassment Jane Doe suffered while a student in the District.

         On April 10, 2017, Bernard Stephen Chandler filed a motion for summary judgment. Doc. #57. After her motion for a Rule 56(d) discovery period was denied, Bright responded in opposition to the motion. Doc. #71.

         On August 28, 2017, Bright filed a motion to seal Exhibits 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, and 10 to her response to Chandler's motion for summary judgment, representing the motion is unopposed. Doc. #74. The same day, Chandler, Ellis, Hardrict, and the District responded to the motion. Doc. #75.

         II Motion to Seal Standard

         Rule 79 of the Uniform Local Civil Rules provides that no document may be filed under seal without a court order. L.U. Civ. R. 79(b). In this regard, Local Rule 79(d) instructs that “[n]o document may be sealed merely by stipulation of the parties.” Though “[a] confidentiality order or protective order entered by the court to govern discovery will not qualify as an order to seal documents for purposes of this rule, ” “[a] statute mandating or permitting the non-disclosure of a class of documents provides sufficient authority to support an order sealing documents.” L.U. Civ. R. 79(b), (d).

         Rule 79 also directs:

Any motion to seal must be accompanied by a non-confidential supporting memorandum, a notice that identifies the motion as a sealing motion, and a proposed order. A party may also submit a confidential memorandum for in camera review. The non-confidential memorandum and the proposed order must include:
(A) A non-confidential description of what is to be sealed;
(B) A specific request that the document or case:
(1) Be sealed from any access by the public and the litigants' counsel;
(2) Be sealed from public access only, with CM/ECF access permitted to the ...

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