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Ham v. McCall

United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Greenville Division

March 10, 2016

Angelo Ham, Plaintiff,
Warden McCall, LCI; Assoc. Warden Nolan, LCI; Assoc. Warden Books, LCI; Major Dean, LCI; SMU Admin. Oberman, LCI; Commissary Hancock, LCI; Commissary Canty, LCI; Lt. Brown, LCI; Lt. Johnson, LCI; Lt. Richardson, LCI; Sgt. Butterbaugh, LCI; Sgt. McBride, LCI; Cpt. West, LCI; Ofc. Thompson, LCI; Ofc. Choice, LCI; Ofc. Dillman, LCI; Ofc. Wilson, LCI; Ofc. Barr, LCI; Sgt. Brown, LCI; H. Johnson, Sgt. LCI; Library Coordinator Desai, LCI; Cpt. Commander, LCI; and Ofc. Finklea, LCI, Defendants.


Plaintiff, appearing pro se, brought this action seeking relief pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (2012). This matter is before the court for review of the Magistrate Judge’s Report and Recommendation (“Report”) (ECF No. 76) recommending that Defendants’ Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 32) be granted. For the reasons set forth below, the court GRANTS Defendants’ Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 32).


The Report contains a thorough recitation of the relevant factual background of the matter. (See generally ECF No. 76.) The court concludes upon its own careful review of the record that the Report’s factual summation is accurate, and the court adopts this summary as its own.

This court previously issued an Order adopting the Report, (ECF No. 77), to which Plaintiff filed a Motion for Reconsideration (ECF No. 77). This court construed that Motion as one wherein Plaintiff’s chief grievance was that he had not received the Report, that which disallowed him from being able to timely file objections. (ECF No. 83 at 1.) This court granted Plaintiff’s Motion for Reconsideration. (Id.) More specifically, this court directed the Clerk of Court to mail a copy of the Report to Plaintiff and instructed Plaintiff as to the deadline for filing his objections. (Id. at 2.) The court considers here the Report and Plaintiff’s Objections (ECF No. 86) to that Report.


A. The Magistrate Judge’s Report and Recommendation The Report is made in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) (2012) and Local Civil Rule 73.02 for the District of South Carolina. The Magistrate Judge makes only a recommendation to this court. The court reviews de novo only those portions of a Magistrate Judge’s recommendation to which specific objections are filed. Orpiano v. Johnson, 687 F.2d 44, 47 (4th Cir. 1982); Diamond v. Colonial Life & Acc. Ins. Co., 416 F.3d 310, 315 (4th Cir. 2005); Camby v. Davis, 718 F.2d 198, 200 (4th Cir. 1983). It reviews those portions which are not objected to-including those portions to which only “general and conclusory” objections have been made-for clear error. Orpiano, 687 F.2d at 47. The court may accept, reject, or modify-in whole or in part-the recommendation of the Magistrate Judge or recommit the matter with instructions. See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1).

B. Motion for Summary Judgment

Summary judgment should be granted “if the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A fact is “material” if proof of its existence or non-existence would affect the disposition of the case under the applicable law. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248-49 (1986). A genuine question of material fact exists where, after reviewing the record as a whole, the court finds that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the non-moving party. Newport News Holdings Corp. v. Virtual City Vision, 650 F.3d 423, 434 (4th Cir. 2011).

In ruling on a motion for summary judgment, a court must view the evidence in the light most favorable to the non-moving party. Perini Corp. v. Perini Constr., Inc., 915 F.2d 121, 123- 24 (4th Cir. 1990). The non-moving party may not oppose a motion for summary judgment with mere allegations or denials of the movant’s pleading, but instead must “set forth specific facts” demonstrating a genuine issue for trial. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e); see Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 324 (1986); Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 252 (1986); Shealy v. Winston, 929 F.2d 1009, 1012 (4th Cir. 1991). All that is required is that “sufficient evidence supporting the claimed factual dispute be shown to require a jury or judge to resolve the parties’ differing versions of the truth at trial.” Anderson, 477 U.S. at 249. “Mere unsupported speculation . . . is not enough to defeat a summary judgment motion.” Ennis v. Nat’l Ass’n of Bus. & Educ. Radio, Inc., 53 F.3d 55, 62 (4th Cir. 1995).


A. The Court’s Review of Plaintiff’s Objections

In his Report, the Magistrate Judge determined:

1) that Plaintiff’s contention that he has received an inadequate amount of hygiene items should be dismissed for the reasons the Magistrate Judge already articulated in another matter in which Plaintiff argues the same claim, (ECF No. 76 at 4 (explaining that Plaintiff’s claim does not survive the applicable legal standard of Strickler v. Waters, 989 F.2d 1375, 1379 (4th Cir. 1993));
2) that Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 32) should be granted with regard to Plaintiff’s claim that he has received ...

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