United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division
ARCELORMITTAL INDIANA HARBOR LLC, and ARCELORMITTAL USA LLC, Plaintiffs,
AMEX NOOTER, LLC, Defendant
OPINION AND ORDER
R. CHERRY UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
matters are before the Court on 13 Motions in Limine filed by
Plaintiffs ArcelorMittal Indiana Harbor LLC and ArcelorMittal
USA LLC (hereinafter collectively
“ArcelorMittal”) on January 3, 2018, filed at
¶ 177, 179, 180, 181, 185, 187, 190, 196, 197, 198, 206,
207, and 208 and 14 Motions in Limine filed by Defendant Amex
Nooter, LLC on January 3, 2018, filed at ¶ 188, 189,
191, 192, 193, 194, 195, 199, 200, 201, 202, 203, 204, and
Court also considered the separate responses to each Motion
in Limine. No. Replies were permitted.
determination of these issues the Court
ADJUDGES, and DECREES:
Rule of Evidence 104 provides, in part: “Preliminary
questions concerning admissibility of evidence shall be
determined by the Court.” Motions in Limine to exclude
evidence prior to trial are subject to a rigorous standard of
review by the trial court. Courts may bar evidence in limine
“only when evidence is clearly inadmissible on all
potential grounds.” Dartey v. Ford Motor Co.,
104 F.Supp.2d 1017, 1020 (N.D. Ind. 2000) (quoting
Hawthorne Partners v. AT&T Tech., 831 F.Supp.
1398, 1400 (N.D. Ill. 1993)). If evidence does not meet this
standard, “the evidentiary rulings should be deferred
until trial so that questions of foundation, relevance, and
potential prejudice may be resolved in proper context.”
Id. (quoting Hawthorne, 831 F.Supp. at
1400). Often, the “better practice is to deal with
questions of admissibility of evidence as they arise,
presenting the issues in a specific context, rather than
excluding broad categories of evidence prior to trial.”
United States v. Phillips, No. 1:12-CR-872, 2014
U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79916* 5-6 (N.D. Ill. June 12, 2014).
court's rulings in limine are preliminary in nature and
subject to change. In this Order the Court is not making
final determination on the admissibility of evidence. The
Court reserves the right to change these rulings during the
trial should the Court find that the evidence or arguments at
trial justify such change.
MOTIONS IN LIMINE
Plaintiffs' Motion in Limine 1 - DE 177 Reference to the
AMUSA-100 terms and conditions. GRANTED. But
the Court will allow Amex Nooter, if it wishes, to make an
offer to prove at trial, outside the presence of the Jury.
The Court reserves the right to reverse this in limine ruling
following the offer to prove.
Plaintiffs' Motion in Limine 2 - DE 179 Reference to
spoliation of evidence. DENIED At trial Amex
Nooter will be permitted to present evidence and argument
that ArcelorMittal committed spoliation of evidence.
See the January 23, 2018 Opinion and Order DE 247.
Plaintiffs' Motion in Limine 3 - DE 180 Reference to
ArcelorMittal's alleged failure to correct hazards with
the natural gas system at Blast Furnace No. 3
Plaintiffs' Motion in Limine 4 - DE 181 Reference to
ArcelorMittal's alleged failure to properly perform lock
out / tag out or ensure that it was performed.
Plaintiffs' Motion in Limine 5 - DE 185 Reference to
ArcelorMittal's alleged inaccuracies in its energy
control procedure creating a hazard. DENIED.
Plaintiffs' Motion in Limine 6 - 187 Reference to the
salamander heater as a hazard ArcelorMittal was allegedly
responsible for eliminating. DENIED.
Plaintiffs' Motion in Limine 7 - DE 190 Reference that
ArcelorMittal allegedly created a hazard by keeping valves