FRESNO – The case against a man accused of excessive force has been closed due to the plaintiff’s apparent instability and mental health issues.
The case involved Andre Wells, who filed a lawsuit against T. Cagle and R. Perez. In the lawsuit, Wells, a state prisoner, claims that Cagle violated his Eighth Amendment rights and that Perez failed to intervene in the incident.
The defendants required a deposition of Wells. As many as four times over the course of two years, Wells either failed to appear for the deposition or refused to cooperate, stating he was not prepared, according to the summary judgment records of the court.
During the course of the case, it became apparent that Wells had mental health issues, spending a portion of the times in a crisis bed at an acute psychiatric facility, as detailed in the court report. Wells used his mental health issues to get a stay in the case, with supporting documentation from his doctor.
Wells’ mental health issues were apparent to the court on several occasions as he requested new legal counsel numerous times, wanted sanctions imposed on the defendant’s counsel and wrote to the court in crayon. In total, Wells filed 154 motions with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California for the one case.
Wells told the court on one occasion, according to summary judgment documents, that his “mental health symptoms affected his ability to conduct discovery and adequately present his case.” He accused the defendants of continuing to assault him and said, “if this process proves to be futile then, yes, I will resort to violence to protect myself.”
District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill denied Wells' summary judgment request and directed the court clerk to close the case on April 4.