Murphy v. CBP

Murphy v. CBP, No. 3:15-cv-00133-GMG-RWT (N.D.W.V., filed Dec. 4, 2015)

Acting pro se, a former armed security guard under federal contract at the CBP Training Center in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia filed a Freedom of Information Act complaint against CBP on December 4, 2015.  The complaint alleged that CBP unlawfully redacted or withheld over 80% of the responsive documents that Plaintiff sought in conjunction with an Equal Employment Opportunity complaint he filed alleging that CBP unlawfully terminated him due to his race and his wife’s race and religion.

After initially moving to dismiss the complaint due to insufficient service, which the district court denied, CBP moved for summary judgment.  Plaintiff opposed the motion, cross-filed for summary judgment, and filed a motion to compel as well as for in camera review of the documents.  After the completing of briefing, on August 5, 2016, the district court denied CBP’s motion for summary judgement, holding that CBP failed to meet its burden of demonstrating that documents responsive to the Plaintiff’s FOIA request were withheld pursuant to a recognized FOIA exemption under FOIA.  The court further established a schedule for the filing of a Vaughn index and for additional briefing from the parties. The court also denied without prejudice Plaintiff’s motion for in camera review of the responsive documents.

On August 8, 2015, CBP filed its answer to the complaint.

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