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.

Abdullah v. Finney

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

September 13, 2016

Muttaqin Fatir Abdullah, Plaintiff,
v.
Ernest A. Finney, III, and James Turner, Defendants.

          ORDER

          Joseph F. Anderson, Jr. United States District Judge

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Plaintiff Muttaqin Fatir Abdullah (“Abdullah”), proceeding pro se and in forma pauperis, brings this action against Defendant Ernest A. Finney, III, (“Finney”), in his individual and official capacity, and Defendant James Turner (“Turner”) in his individual and official capacity, (collectively “Defendants”) pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

         II. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

         Abdullah is a pre-trial detainee at the Sumter-Lee Regional Detention Center. (ECF No. 1, p. 2). On April 21, 2016, Abdullah filed this action alleging Defendants violated his rights under the First, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution; manipulated, harassed, and unlawfully incarcerated him; and lack sufficient evidence to indict him.[1] (ECF No. 1). In addition, Abdullah moved for leave to proceed in forma pauperis under 28 U.S.C. § 1915, (ECF No. 2), which was granted on May 20, 2016, by Magistrate Judge Kevin McDonald, (ECF No. 7).

         The Magistrate Judge assigned to this action[2] prepared a thorough Report and Recommendation (“Report”) and opines that this Court summarily dismiss this action without prejudice. (ECF No. 9). The Report sets forth in detail the relevant facts and standards of law on this matter, and this Court incorporates those facts and standards without a recitation.[3] In addition, the Court takes judicial notice that, according to the Sumter County Third Judicial Circuit Public Index, Abdullah was indicted on May 21, 2016, on all four warrants mentioned in his complaint, (ECF No. 1), and provided via attachment, (ECF No. 1-1).[4] See Fed. R. Evid. 201.

         Abdullah was advised of his right to object to the Report, which was entered on the docket on May 20, 2016. (ECF No. 9). The Magistrate Judge gave Abdullah until June 6, 2016, to file objections. (Id.). On May 31, 2016, Abdullah filed his objections to the Report. (ECF No. 11). Thus, this matter is ripe for the Court's review.

         III.DISCUSSION

         The Court is charged with making a de novo determination of those portions of the Report to which specific objection is made, and the Court may accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the recommendation of the Magistrate Judge, or recommit the matter to the Magistrate Judge with instructions. See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1). In the absence of specific objections to the Report of the Magistrate Judge, this Court is not required to give an explanation for adopting the recommendation. See Camby v. Davis, 718 F.2d 198, 199 (4th Cir. 1983).

         Here, Abdullah attempts to make two objections to the Report. However, only one objection can be construed to constitute a specific objection to the Report, and it is without merit.[5]Abdullah asserts that the defense of qualified immunity does not always prevail in cases against state and government officials. (ECF No. 11 at 2). In support, Abdullah cites to Abdullah v. Seba, 2016 WL 3916007 (3d Cir. July 20, 2016) (regarding a Bivens action wherein the Court ruled that, even if a viable claim had been presented, the defendants were protected by qualified immunity).[6]

         While it is true that qualified immunity does not always apply to protect a particular individual, [7] the Magistrate Judge has recommended dismissal of this action without prejudice based upon other grounds. Therefore, an analysis regarding the applicability of qualified immunity in this case is not warranted.

         In this case, Finney is protected by absolute immunity in his individual capacity because the alleged wrongful conduct-Finney's failure to indict Abdullah-is specifically regarding an act “intimately associated with the judicial phase of the criminal process.” Imbler v. Pachtman, 424 U.S. 409, 430-31 n. 33 (1976).[8] Thus, Abdullah's objection as to qualified immunity is inapplicable, and Finney is immune from civil suit for damages under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 due to absolute immunity in his individual capacity.

         With regard to the allegations against Finney in his official capacity, Finney is considered to be a State officer and, therefore, he is unable to be sued in his official capacity for money damages under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 due to the Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution. See Williams v. Condon, 553 S.E.2d 496, 508 (S.C. Ct. App. 2001) (holding claims for money damages raised against the State attorney general and circuit solicitor in their official capacities were not permissible under Section 1983 because they were State officials); see also Will v. Michigan Dep't. of State Police, 491 U.S. 58, 71 (1989) (holding “neither a State nor its officials acting in their official capacities are ‘persons' under § 1983”).

         Therefore, it is proper that this action against Finney be summarily dismissed because Abdullah seeks monetary relief and Finney is immune from such relief in his individual ...


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.