United States District Court, D. South Carolina
Michael Anthony Sarratt, a/k/a Michael A. Sarratt, a/k/a Goddess Shuggar Sarratt, Plaintiff,
South Carolina Department of Corrections, Bryan P. Stirling, Sandra R. Barrett, Defendants.
C. Coggins, Jr. United States District Judge
matter is before the Court on Plaintiff's Complaint
alleging violations of her civil rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. ECF No. 1. In accordance with 28 U.S.C. §
636(b) and Local Civil Rule 73.02(B)(2), (D.S.C.), this
matter was referred to United States Magistrate Judge
Jacquelyn D. Austin for pre-trial proceedings and a Report
and Recommendation (“Report”).
April 19, 2018, Defendants filed a Motion for Summary
Judgment. ECF No. 90. Plaintiff filed a Response in
Opposition, and Defendants filed a Reply. ECF No. 100, 103.
On August 31, 2018, the Magistrate Judge issued a Report
recommending that the motion for summary judgment be granted
in part and denied in part. ECF No. 104. The Magistrate Judge
advised the parties of the procedures and requirements for
filing objections to the Report and the serious consequences
if they failed to do so. Defendants filed objections to the
Report. ECF No. 117.
Magistrate Judge makes only a recommendation to this Court.
The recommendation has no presumptive weight, and the
responsibility to make a final determination remains with the
Court. See Mathews v. Weber, 423 U.S. 261 (1976).
The Court is charged with making a de novo determination of
any portion of the Report of the Magistrate Judge to which a
specific objection is made. The Court may accept, reject, or
modify, in whole or in part, the recommendation made by the
Magistrate Judge or recommit the matter to the Magistrate
Judge with instructions. See 28 U.S.C. §
636(b). The Court will review the Report only for clear error
in the absence of an objection. See Diamond v. Colonial
Life & Accident Ins. Co., 416 F.3d 310, 315 (4th
Cir. 2005) (stating that “in the absence of timely
filed objection, a district court need not conduct a de
novo review, but instead must only satisfy itself that
there is no clear error on the face of the record in order to
accept the recommendation.” (citation omitted)).
Magistrate Judge recommends granting Defendants' Motion
for Summary Judgment with respect to Plaintiff's claims
against the South Carolina Department of Corrections
(“SCDC”), her claims against Stirling and Barrett
in their individual capacities, and her claim that she is
being denied medical treatment in violation of the Eighth
Amendment. The Magistrate Judge further recommends finding as
moot Plaintiff's claims for injunctive relief against
Barrett in her official capacity. No party has filed
objections to these recommendations. After considering the
record in this case, the applicable law, and the Report of
the Magistrate Judge, the Court finds no clear error and
agrees with the recommendation of the Magistrate Judge.
Magistrate Judge recommends denying Defendants' Motion
for Summary Judgment with respect to the remaining claims for
injunctive relief against Stirling in his official capacity.
The Court notes the Magistrate Judge's well-reasoned
analysis with respect to these claims. In their objections,
Defendants provide additional information, including
affidavits demonstrating a significant change in the status
of Plaintiff within SCDC. It appears that Plaintiff has now
been properly classified and that the SCDC staff is engaging
with Plaintiff to make necessary accommodations. However, it
is unclear whether all of Plaintiff's remaining claims
for injunctive relief have been addressed. The Court is of
the opinion that additional briefing on this issue would be
beneficial in light of the ongoing changes to Plaintiff's
housing and treatment. Accordingly, Defendants' Motion
for Summary Judgment is denied with leave to refile with
respect to the remaining claims for injunctive relief against
Stirling in his official capacity.
based upon the foregoing, the claims against Barrett in her
official capacity are DISMISSED as moot. The
Motion for Summary Judgment  is GRANTED in
part and DENIED in part with leave to
refile. The Motion is granted as to Plaintiff's
claim against all Defendants that she is being denied medical
treatment in violation of the Eighth Amendment, granted as to
all claims against the South Carolina Department of
Corrections, granted as to all claims against Stirling and
Barrett in their individual capacities, and denied with leave
to refile as to all other claims for injunctive relief
against Stirling in his official capacity. Defendants'
Motion for Extension of Time  is
DISMISSED as moot. In the event that
Defendant Stirling intends to refile his Motion for Summary
Judgment with respect to the remaining claims, he is directed
to do so within 45 days.
OF RIGHT TO APPEAL
parties are hereby notified of the right to appeal this order
pursuant to Rules 3 and 4 of the ...