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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA


CHARLOTTESVILLE DIVISION

BRENNAN M. GILMORE, CASE NO.: 3:18-cv-00017-GEC

Plaintiff

v.

ALEXANDER JONES, et al., JOINT OPPOSITION OF DEFENDANTS


HOFT AND STRANAHAN TO MOTION
Defendants TO SET BRIEFING SCHEDULE

NOW COME Defendants James Hoft and Lee Stranahan, by their counsel Aaron J. Walker,

Esq., in the above-styled case for the sole purpose of filing this Opposition to the Motion to Set

Briefing Schedule, without waiving any rights of jurisdiction, notice, process, joinder, or venue.

They state the following:

1. On April 24, 2018, the Plaintiff filed his First Amended Complaint (“FAC”) as his

amendment of right and also filed a Motion to Set Briefing Schedule (ECF No. 32), seeking to

extend this case into July.

2. Messrs. Hoft and Stranahan oppose any extension of time with respect to them

because this case has already gone on too long. This Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction in

general and personal jurisdiction over Mr. Hoft in particular. In other words, this case is in the

wrong court. This was a flaw with the original Complaint, and that flaw continues to be present in

the FAC. This case, therefore, is meritless and should have been voluntarily withdrawn by the

Plaintiff, not extended by a pointless amendment.

3. Indeed, the issue of jurisdiction has become more pronounced since Messrs. Hoft

and Stranahan filed their joint motion to dismiss (ECF No. 25). The FAC states that the Plaintiff

is domiciled in Virginia. FAC ¶ 13. The undisputed evidence before this Court establishes that Mr.

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Stranahan is also domiciled in Virginia. 1 The Plaintiff’s only asserted ground for jurisdiction is

diversity of citizenship, and there is not complete diversity.

4. Therefore, there is simply no way that this case, even in its amended form, can

survive a motion to dismiss. If this was not an amendment of right, these Defendants would ask

this Court to deny leave to amend for futility. Laber v. Harvey, 438 F. 3d 404, 426 (4th Cir. 2006).

However, while the Plaintiff has a right to amend the complaint, he does not have a right to prolong

the case any more than strictly necessary for due process when it so clearly merits dismissal.

Further, given that this case impacts Freedom of Expression, this Court should be especially

careful about unjustifiably dragging out this case.

5. Additionally, it is a waste of this Court’s time to force every Defendant to hire a

lawyer and file a motion to dismiss when one motion to dismiss—the one filed by Messrs. Hoft

and Stranahan—is likely to end the entire case. Undersigned counsel anticipates that he will be

able to file a renewed motion to dismiss by May 8, 2018 at the latest, and therefore, their motion

to dismiss will be fully briefed by May 29—a week after briefing would begin under the Plaintiff’s

proposed briefing schedule.

6. The Plaintiff’s ostensible purpose in proposing this schedule is to avoid staggered

motions to dismiss. However, there is little guarantee that all of the motions to dismiss will be filed

1
The Plaintiff alleges in the Complaint that Mr. Stranahan is domiciled in Texas based on the
allegation that he is registered to vote in Texas. Exhibit A, a new declaration by Mr. Stranahan
shows that, assuming he is still on the voter rolls in Texas, this would be traceable to the fact that
like many people who move from one state to another, he simply failed to inform his previous state
of domicile that he had left its political community. As the Declaration shows, he has never voted
in Texas since coming to Virginia, he has no home in Texas, he has no family in Texas, and he has
no intention of returning to Texas. He is and intends to be a Virginian. Given that “Domicile
requires physical presence, coupled with an intent to make the State a home,” Johnson v. Advance
America, 549 F.3d 932, 937 n. 2 (4th Cir. 2008), it is plain that Mr. Stranahan is domiciled in
Virginia and therefore, there is no subject matter jurisdiction in this case.
2

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by May 22, 2018 as proposed. At this time, there are two Defendants who have not signed waivers

of service of process: Derrick Wilburn, and R. Scott Creighton. Upon information and belief, Mr.

Creighton will waive service but there is nothing in the record showing whether the Plaintiff has

sent Mr. Wilburn a waiver of service of process form or whether the Plaintiff has the correct

addresses for Mr. Wilburn. Moreover, if Mr. Wilburn does not waive service of process for

whatever reason, how long it will take to serve process upon him? There is nothing on the record

that would allow this Court to estimate when service might occur. Furthermore, the Plaintiff has

added two defendants who might sign waivers, entitling them to wait another sixty days after they

receive the proposed waiver of service of process. Thus, this Court might grant the extension the

Plaintiff seeks, only to receive staggered motions to dismiss, anyway.

7. As for Plaintiff’s concerns about briefing on the same issues, the local rules allow

the Plaintiff to incorporate arguments from one filing to another to save time and space. If the

Plaintiff believes his response to one set of Defendants applies to another, he can incorporate his

prior brief by reference.

8. That all being said, Messrs. Hoft and Stranahan do not object to any other parties

agreeing to this schedule. If Mr. Jones, Free Speech Systems, LLC, Ms. McAdoo and the Plaintiff

wish to agree to that schedule, that is between those Defendants and the Plaintiff. However,

Messrs. Hoft and Stranahan oppose having a longer schedule imposed on them and several other

Defendants have not made an appearance allowing them to be heard on this issue. For Messrs.

Hoft and Stranahan, this case has gone on too long already, and they wish to be done with this

attack on their Freedom of Expression before Independence Day.

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WHEREFORE, the Plaintiff’s Motion to Set Briefing Schedule should be denied, at least with

respect to Mr. Hoft and Stranahan.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018 Respectfully submitted,

s/ Aaron J. Walker
Aaron J. Walker, Esq.
Attorney for Defendants Hoft and Stranahan
Va Bar# 48882
DC Bar #481668
P.O. Box 3075
Manassas, Virginia 20108
(703) 216-0455
(No fax)
AaronJW1972@gmail.com

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

I hereby certify that I electronically filed the foregoing with the Clerk of the Court for the
United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia on Tuesday, April 24, 2018.
Participants in the case who are registered for electronic filing will be served automatically.
I further certify that some of the participants in the case are not registered for electronic
filing or have not had counsel appear on their behalf. I have mailed the foregoing by First-Class
Mail, postage prepaid, or have dispatched it to a third party commercial carrier for delivery within
three calendar days to the following persons who have not registered for electronic filing:

Scott Creighton, a/k/a/ Raymond Scott Creighton, 9214 13th Street N, Apt. A, Tampa, FL 33612

Allen B. West, 9925 Wood Forest Drive, Dallas, TX 75243

Derrick Wilburn, 1820 Smoke Ridge Drive, Colorado Springs, CO 80919-3458

Words-N-Ideas, LLC, 848 SE 4th Court, Deerfield Beach, FL 33441

Michele Hickford, 848 SE 4th Court, Deerfield Beach, FL 33441

s/ Aaron J. Walker

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