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Appeals Court of Massachusetts.

Larry D. INGRAM v. Paul D. BETOURNEY & Others.1


Decided: April 27, 2021

By the Court (Green, C.J. & Vuono & Shin, JJ.2),


Larry D. Ingram, an inmate in the custody of the Massachusetts Department of Correction, filed suit in Superior Court challenging the results of a disciplinary hearing and several grievance appeals. After a Superior Court judge allowed a motion to dismiss filed by the defendants, Ingram noticed an appeal, which was entered in this court as docket no. 17-P-1284. Thereafter, two single justices of this court issued various rulings in docket no. 17-P-1284, vacating the notice of assembly of the record and entry of the appeal as premature because some of Ingram's claims remained pending in the Superior Court. Ingram appealed from each of these rulings. A third single justice then allowed in this case the defendants' motion to file a memorandum of law in lieu of a brief, and Ingram filed another notice of appeal. The appeals were consolidated and are now before us.

All of the appeals are frivolous. The first two single justices did not abuse their discretion in vacating the notice of assembly of the record and entry of the appeal as premature, where there were still claims pending in the Superior Court and final judgment had not entered. See Jones v. Boykan, 74 Mass. App. Ct. 213, 216 (2009). Contrary to Ingram's contention, the single justices did not “determine” the appeal; their rulings are expressly without prejudice to Ingram's reentering his appeal upon entry of a final judgment in the Superior Court. We also reject Ingram's baseless accusation that the Worcester Superior Court Clerk's Office falsified the docket sheet.

Ingram fails to explain how the third single justice abused her discretion by allowing the defendants to file a memorandum of law in lieu of a brief. Nor does he explain how he was prejudiced by this ruling.

Orders of the single justices affirmed.

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Docket No: 19-P-1039

Decided: April 27, 2021

Court: Appeals Court of Massachusetts.

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