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Gallagher v. Pajevic

United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division

July 24, 2018

ROBERT GALLAGHER, Plaintiff,
v.
NADA PAJEVIC, Defendant.

          PLAINTIFF ROBERT GALLAGHER, PRO SE

          DEFENDANT NADA PAJEVIC, PRO SE

          OPINION AND ORDER AND FINDINGS, REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION OF UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE PURSUANT TO 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) & (C)

          PAUL R. CHERRY MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         This matter is before the Court on a Motion for a Default Judgment by the Court [DE 25], filed by Plaintiff Robert Gallagher on June 25, 2018.

         On June 27, 2018, District Court Judge Joseph S. Van Bokkelen entered an Order [DE 26] referring this matter to the undersigned Magistrate Judge for a report and recommendation on the Motion for a Default Judgment by the Court [DE 25] pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B). This Report constitutes the undersigned Magistrate Judge's combined proposed findings and recommendations pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C). The Court recommends that Judge Van Bokkelen deny the Motion for a Default Judgment by the Court [DE 25]and sua sponte vacate the June 24, 2016 Clerk's Entry of Default [DE 9].

         In addition, the undersigned Magistrate Judge, on his own authority, vacates the August 24, 2016 Opinion and Order striking Pajevic's July 12, 2016 “Answer, ” reinstates Defendant Pajevic's July 12, 2016 “Answer, ” vacates the July 31, 2018 motion hearing, and orders Gallagher to file a supplemental jurisdictional statement as set forth below.

         PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         On August 31, 2015, Plaintiff Robert Gallagher filed a pro se Complaint against Defendant Nada Pajevic. Both Gallagher and Pajevic are proceeding without counsel in this matter.

         In the Complaint, Gallagher alleges claims of defamation, libel, and intentional infliction of emotional distress against Pajevic. Specifically, Gallagher alleges that Pajevic made physical threats and threats of committing legal abuses so severe that Gallagher called the police; that Pajevic wrote a “patently false statement, in an email, where she firmly stated that [Gallagher] had stole[sic] her company printer”; that Pajevic wrote “another knowingly and absolutely false email statement where she firmly stated, (again, not an opinion), that she had a video of [Gallagher] damaging the door of her vehicle”; that Pajevic filed an order of protection against Gallagher; that Pajevic filed a false claim in small claims court falsely alleging that Gallagher had possession of her property; that Pajevic committed perjury in family court when she claimed that she feared Gallagher and implied that Gallagher was stalking her; and that Pajevic caused Gallagher to be brought into family court in Indiana.

         Having been served with the summons and Complaint on October 10, 2015, Pajevic's answer was due on November 2, 2015.

         On June 21, 2016, the Clerk of Court issued a notice that pursuant to Northern District of Indiana Local Rule 41-1, the case may be dismissed for lack of prosecution because Gallagher had taken no action in the case for over six months.

         On June 23, 2016, Gallagher filed a Motion for Clerk's Entry of Default against Pajevic, signing a sworn affidavit seeking damages in the amount of one million dollars. (ECF 8).

         On June 24, 2016, the Clerk of Court issued a Clerk's Entry of Default against Pajevic. (ECF 9).

         On July 12, 2016, Pajevic filed a document with the court, docketed as an “Answer, ” offering an answer to Gallagher's Complaint and asking that the matter be dismissed. (ECF 12). Pajevic attached 21 pages of exhibits. In the “Answer, ” Pajevic states that Gallagher's allegations have no basis in fact; that Gallagher has filed multiple frivolous cases/complaints in Illinois against her, all of which have been dismissed; that she has a 2-year order of protection against Gallagher; that Gallagher does not reside in Indiana but has been continuously living in Illinois for over ...


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