United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Florence Division
RICHARD MARK GERGEL UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT JUDGE
the Court is Mr. Rodriquez's motion to reconsider. (Dkt.
No. 77.) For the reasons set forth below, the motion is
Rodriquez is a pro se incarcerated person at the
Federal Correctional Institution ("FCI") in Estill,
South Carolina. Mr. Rodriquez initiated an action alleging
that FCI employees violated his constitutional rights under
Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of the Federal Bureau
of Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971). The Court previously
declined to sua sponte dismiss Mr. Rodriquez's
claim as untimely (Dkt. No. 14) and, after briefing of the
issues on the merits, Defendants moved to dismiss the claim
on summary judgment (Dkt. No. 49). Mr. Rodriquez filed
neither a response in opposition to the motion nor objections
to the Magistrate Judge's Report and Recommendation
("R & R") (Dkt. No. 62) that Defendants'
motion be granted and his claim be dismissed for failure to
prosecute. The Court entered an order adopting the R & R,
which the Court then vacated in order to grant Mr.
Rodriquez's request for an extension of time to file any
objections by April 1, 2019 (Dkt. No. 70). Mr. Rodriquez made
no objections to the R & R by that deadline, and three
days later the Court adopted the R & R as the order of
the Court to dismiss the complaint under Rule 41 of the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and on the merits of
Defendants' motion for summary judgment. (Dkt. No. 73.)
Mr. Rodriquez now moves the Court to reconsider.
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure allows a party to
move to alter or amend a judgment within twenty-eight days.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e). The Court may grant a motion for
reconsideration only in limited circumstances: "(1) to
accommodate an intervening change in controlling law; (2) to
account for new evidence not available at trial; or (3) to
correct a clear error of law or prevent manifest
injustice." Pac. Ins. Co. v. Am. Nat'l Fire Ins.
Co., 148 F.3d 396, 403 (4th Cir. 1998). "Rule 59(e)
motions may not be used, however, to raise arguments which
could have been raised prior to the issuance of the judgment,
nor may they be used to argue a case under a novel legal
theory that the party had the ability to address in the first
instance." Id. A Rule 59 motion tests whether
the Court's initial Order was "factually supported
and legally justified." Hutchinson v. Staton,
994 F.2d 1076, 1081-82 (4th Cir. 1993). Therefore, the Court
may decline to reconsider a prior holding that "applied
the correct legal standards" and made "factual
findings [ ] supported by substantial evidence."
Harwley v. Comm 'r of Soc. Sec. Admin., 714
Fed.Appx. 311, 312 (Mem) (4th Cir. 2018). The movant's
"mere disagreement" with the Court's legal
application "does not support a Rule 59(e) motion."
Hutchinson, 994 F.2d at 1082. Accordingly, Rule
59(e) provides an "extraordinary remedy which should be
used sparingly." Pac. Ins. Co., 148 F.3d at
Court carefully reviewed the argument raised in Mr.
Rodriquez's timely motion and finds it is without merit
to warrant reconsideration under Rule 59. Specifically, Mr.
Rodriquez challenges the Court's finding that he failed
to object to the R & R because he in fact mailed
objections on March 29, 2019. Mr. Rodriquez supplies his
purported objections (Dkt. No. 77-1), which the Court has
reviewed and finds do not impugn the factual support and
legal justification of its prior holding.
Magistrate Judge recommended, and the Court found, that Mr.
Rodriquez's claim was subject to dismissal under Rule 41
and on the merits. Relevant to the dismissal under Rule 41,
Mr. Rodriquez contends that the Magistrate Judge mislead the
Court by characterizing him as recalcitrant when he has
requested, but Defendants have failed to provide him with,
documents under the Freedom of Information Act. (Dkt. No.
77-1 at 2.) Rule 41 provides for dismissal for failure to
prosecute or to comply with a Court order, and the R & R
recommended dismissal for failing to file a response in
opposition to Defendants' motion to dismiss after being
granted two extensions and in light of the Roseboro
Order. The Court finds that the legal justification for its
order adopting this recommendation is not diminished under
Rule 59 by Mr. Rodriquez's objection.
to dismissal on the merits of Defendants' motion for
summary judgment, Mr. Rodriquez contends in part that he did
exhaust his administrative remedies, albeit untimely, and
that a reasonable fact finder could conclude that prison
administrative remedies were not available to him, excusing
his failure to exhaust. (Dkt. No. 77-1 at 3.) The R & R
found that the events of alleged deliberate indifference and
medical care delay occurred in 2012, 2013 and 2014, but that
Mr. Rodriquez did not initiate the administrative remedy
process until 2017. Mr. Rodriquez's purported objections
to the R & R do not warrant reconsideration of dismissal
of his claim on the merits for newly discovered evidence or
to prevent a manifest injustice.
these reasons, Mr. Rodriquez has not demonstrated to the Rule
59 standard that the Court should reconsider dismissing his
claim under Rule 41 and on the merits of Defendants'
motion for summary judgment.
foregoing reasons, Mr. Rodriquez's motion to reconsider
(Dkt. No. 77) is DENIED.