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.

Drafts v. Sgt. Christopher Poindexter

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

June 19, 2018

Deshaun Drafts, Plaintiff,
v.
Sgt. Christopher Poindexter, Defendant.

          OPINION & ORDER

          HENRY M. HERLONG, JR. SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter is before the court with the Report and Recommendation of United States Magistrate Judge Kaymani D. West, made in accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) and Local Civil Rule 73.02 of the District of South Carolina.[1] Deshaun Drafts (“Drafts”), proceeding pro se, alleges a violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Drafts alleges that Sgt. Christopher Poindexter (“Poindexter”) failed to protect him before he was severely injured. (Compl. 2, ECF No. 1.) In her Report and Recommendation, Magistrate Judge West recommends granting Poindexter's motion for summary judgment, and dismissing this case with prejudice. (R&R 11, ECF No. 48.)

         I. Factual and Procedural Background

         Drafts is currently incarcerated at South Carolina Department of Corrections' (“SCDC”) Lieber Correctional Institution (“Lieber”). (Compl. 2, ECF No. 1.) Drafts claims he is litigating an “Eight Amendment violation, fail to protect my life when attacked stab twice in the back” issue. (Id., ECF No. 1.) Specifically, Drafts asserts that he was stabbed twice by fellow inmates in the kitchen at Lieber on April 20, 2017. (Id. at 3, ECF No. 1.) Drafts alleges that Poindexter was present during the stabbing, but that he “jumped over the wall without spraying gas or trying to break up the fighting.” (Id., ECF No. 1.) Further, Drafts alleges that Poindexter left him unprotected to “almost be killed by [the] group of inmates.” (Id., ECF No. 1.) Drafts seeks $20, 000.00 in compensatory damages and $40, 000.00 in punitive damages from Poindexter. (Compl. 4, ECF No. 1.) In addition, Drafts requests that the SCDC terminate Poindexter's employment. (Id., ECF No. 1.)

         On February 20, 2018, Poindexter filed a motion for summary judgment. (Mot. Summ. J., ECF No. 41.) Drafts filed a response in opposition on March 16, 2018. (Resp. Opp'n Mot. Summ. J., ECF No. 46.) Poindexter filed a reply on March 22, 2018. (Reply, ECF No. 47.) On May 15, 2018, Magistrate Judge West issued a Report and Recommendation in which she recommends granting Poindexter's motion for summary judgment. (R&R, generally, ECF No. 48.) On June 14, 2018, Drafts filed his objections to the magistrate judge's Report and Recommendation. (Objs., ECF No. 55.) In addition, Drafts filed a motion for copies of Poindexter's affidavit and response to interrogatories on June 14, 2018. (Mot. Copies, ECF No. 54.)

         II. Report and Recommendation

         First, Magistrate Judge West recommends dismissing any official capacity claim raised in Drafts' complaint because Poindexter is immune from suit under the Eleventh Amendment. (R&R 4, ECF No. 48.) Second, Magistrate Judge West recommends granting Poindexter's motion for summary judgment on Drafts' failure-to-protect cause of action. (Id. at 9, ECF No. 48.) Specifically, the magistrate judge finds that Poindexter acted reasonably under the circumstances and there is no genuine issue of material fact on the issue of the reasonableness of Poindexter's actions. (Id., ECF No. 48.) Further, the magistrate judge recommends granting Poindexter qualified immunity if the court finds that a constitutional violation occurred. (Id. at 11, ECF No. 48.)

         II. Discussion of the Law

         A. Summary Judgment Standard

         Summary judgment is appropriate only “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). In deciding whether a genuine issue of material fact exists, the evidence of the non-moving party is to be believed and all justifiable inferences must be drawn in his favor. See Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986). However, “[o]nly disputes over facts that might affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law will properly preclude the entry of summary judgment. Factual disputes that are irrelevant or unnecessary will not be counted.” Id. at 248.

         A litigant “cannot create a genuine issue of material fact through mere speculation or the building of one inference upon another.” Beale v. Hardy, 769 F.2d 213, 214 (4th Cir. 1985). “[W]here the record taken as a whole could not lead a rational trier of fact to find for the non-moving party, disposition by summary judgment is appropriate.” Monahan v. Cty. of Chesterfield, Va., 95 F.3d 1263, 1265 (4th Cir. 1996) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted). “[T]he mere existence of some alleged factual dispute between the parties will not defeat an otherwise properly supported motion for summary judgment; the requirement is that there be no genuine issue of material fact.” Ballenger v. N.C. Agric. Extension Serv., 815 F.2d 1001, 1005 (4th Cir. 1987) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted).

         B. Objections to the Report and Recommendation

         Drafts filed objections to the Report and Recommendation. Objections to the Report and Recommendation must be specific. Failure to file specific objections constitutes a waiver of a party's right to further judicial review, including appellate review, if the recommendation is accepted by the district judge. See United States v. Schronce, 727 F.2d 91, 94 & n.4 (4th Cir. 1984). In the absence of specific objections to the Report and Recommendation of the magistrate judge, this court is not required to give any explanation for adopting the recommendation. See Camby v. Davis, 718 F.2d 198, 199 (4th Cir. 1983).

         Upon review, the court finds that many of Drafts' objections are non-specific, unrelated to the dispositive portions of the magistrate judge's Report and Recommendation, or merely restate his claims. However, the court was able to glean one specific objection. Drafts objects that the magistrate judge erred in finding that he had offered no evidence that Poindexter unreasonably failed to protect him from the other prisoners. (Obj. 4, ECF No. 55.) Specifically, Drafts argues that Poindexter's affidavit and ...


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.