Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Gaskins v. State

United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Anderson/Greenwood Division

June 10, 2016

Jerald Denton Gaskins Jr., #362923, Plaintiff,
v.
State of South Carolina; Perry Correctional, Institution; Warden Larry Cartledge; Associate Warden Claytor, Defendants.

          ORDER AND OPINION

          J. MICHELLE CHILDS, District Judge.

         Plaintiff Jerald Denton Gaskins, Jr. ("Plaintiff"), filed this pro se action n forma pauperisi pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. This matter is before the court for review of the Magistrate Judge's Report and Recommendation ("Report") (ECF No. 23), filed on January 8, 2016, recommending Plaintiff's action (ECF No. 1) be dismissed without prejudice and without issuance and service of process. For the reasons below, the court ADOPTS the findings of the Magistrate Judge's Report (ECF No. 23) and DISMISSES Plaintiff's Complaint (ECF No. 1) without prejudice.

         I. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         On November 2, 2015, Plaintiff filed a Complaint claiming that a sheet of metal on the premises of Perry Correctional Institution ("PCI") created a dangerous condition when wet, which caused Plaintiff's injuries after a slip and fall. (ECF No. 23 at 1-2.) Plaintiff sought damages for pain and suffering and asked the court to order PCI to fix the metal. ( Id. at 2.) After the Magistrate Judge filed the Report recommending this court dismiss the action without prejudice and without issuance and service of process (ECF No. 23), Plaintiff timely filed Objections on January 25, 2016. (ECF No. 25.)

         II. LEGAL STANDARD

         The Magistrate Judge's Report is made in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) and Local Civil Rule 73.02 for the District of South Carolina. The Magistrate Judge makes only a recommendation to this court, and the recommendation has no presumptive weight-the responsibility to make a final determination remains with this court. See Mathews v. Weber, 423 U.S. 261, 270-71 (1976). The court is charged with making a de novo determination of those portions of the Report and Recommendation to which specific objections are made, and the court may accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the Magistrate Judge's recommendation or recommit the matter with instructions. See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1).

         III. ANALYSIS

         A. Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies

         The Magistrate Judge recommends the Complaint be dismissed because Plaintiff has not exhausted the required administrative remedies prior to filing a lawsuit. (ECF No. 23 at 5 (citing 42 U.S.C. § 1997(e)(a)).)

         In his first Objection, Plaintiff asserts that a request to staff ("Request") was filed in lieu of a Step 1 grievance or Step 2 appeal because the proper paperwork was not supplied to him. (ECF No. 25.) As a result, Plaintiff claims every available action was exhausted. ( Id. )

         To exhaust the administrative remedies requires "using all steps that the agency holds out, and doing so properly." Woodford v. Ngo, 548 U.S. 81, 93-94 (2006) (quoting Pozo v. McCaughtry, 286 F.3d 1022, 1024 (7th Cir. 2002)). Additionally, the Supreme Court held that "the [Prison Litigation Rights Act] exhaustion requirement applies to all inmate suits about prison life, whether they involve general circumstances or particular episodes, and whether they allege excessive force or some other wrong." Porter v. Nussle, 534 U.S. 516, 516 (2002); Booth v. Churner, 532 U.S. 731, 731-32(2001).

         This court agrees with the Magistrate Judge's assessment that prison administrators were denied an opportunity to resolve the matter when Plaintiff filed the Complaint before receiving an answer to the Request. (ECF No. 23 at 7.) Therefore, Plaintiff's claims are subject to summary dismissal because he failed to exhaust the administrative remedies available at PCI. See e.g., Anderson v. XYZ Corr. Health Serv., 407 F.3d 674, 683 (4th Cir. 2005).

         B. Cruel and Unusual Punishment

         The Magistrate Judge also recommends the Complaint be dismissed because the Eleventh Amendment grants the State of South Carolina immunity from a state law tort claim in federal court unless a State expressly consents. (ECF No. 23 at 7 (citing S.C. Code Ann. § 15-78-20(e) (1976); Pennhurst State Sch. & Hosp. v. Halderman,465 U.S. 89 (1984)).) In this regard, the Magistrate Judge observes that the State of South Carolina has not consented to the suit. (ECF No. 23 ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.