Sambrano v. Mabu, No. 10-3430 (7th Cir. 2011)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff filed a charge with the EEOC accusing her employer, the Department of the Navy, of discriminating on account of race, sex, national origin, age, and disability. The EEOC found the charge unsupported. In the district court, neither party conducted discovery. Plaintiff sought judgment on the pleadings. The district judge denied the motion. After more than a year of inaction, the district judge dismissed the case for want of prosecution. Plaintiff's lawyer then filed an ex parte motion for relief from judgment, but did not serve the motion on his adversary or explain why a secret motion was authorized. The district judge denied the motion. Seventh Circuit affirmed, rejecting an argument that Local Rule 41.1 (the basis for dismissal for want of prosecution) violates the due process clause as "almost unintelligible." The court characterized the appeal as frivolous, stating that It bypassed the only possible argument:that the district judge abused his discretion by dismissing the suit without first warning about the risks of procrastination. The court gave plaintiff's attorney 21 days to show cause why he should not be subject to monetary sanctions for filing a frivolous appeal and violating Circuit Rule 30, and why he should not be censured, suspended, or disbarred on account of his apparent inability to practice competently and diligently in the federal courts.