United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Charleston Division
OPINION AND ORDER
RICHARD MARK GERGEL UNITED STATES COURT JUDGE.
this Court is the Report and Recommendation ("R &
R") of the Magistrate Judge (Dkt. No. 78) recommending
that Defendant's motion for summary judgment (Dkt. No.
62) be granted. For the reasons set forth below, the Court
adopts the R & R as the Order of the Court and grants the
Defendant's motion for summary judgment.
Robbie Collins is currently incarcerated at the Broad River
Correctional Institution ("Broad River") in the
custody of the South Carolina Department of Corrections
("SCDC"). (Dkt. No. 68-3 at 1.) Plaintiffs
complaint brought four claims: denial of medical care, denial
of outdoor recreation, freedom of religion, and denial of
access to the grievance system. (Dkt. No. 11.) On November
13, 2018, the Court dismissed Plaintiffs claims for freedom
of religion and access to the grievance system. (Dkt. No.
37.) Therefore, the only claims that remain are for the
alleged denial of medical care and denial of outdoor
alleges that his ribs were broken on April 4, 2018, allegedly
after being attacked by a group of inmates. (Dkt. No. 11 at
5.) A doctor ordered an x-ray and other treatment, but
Plaintiff was transferred to McCormick Correctional
Institution ("MCI") on April 10, 2018 before
receiving any treatment. (Id.) On April 10, 2018,
Plaintiff visited health services at MCI, and the nurse
allegedly told him to fill out a "sick-call
request." (Id.) However, the following day, on
April 11, 2018, Plaintiff was placed in the Restrictive
Housing Unit ("RHU") after he approached Defendant
Warden Williams and informed the Warden that he had a weapon.
(Id.; Dkt. No. 62-2 at 6.) Plaintiff was restrained
and a 12-inch long sharpened steel weapon was found in
Plaintiffs waistband. (Dkt. No. 62-2 at 6 - 7.) Plaintiff
remained in the RHU for approximately fifty (50 days) until
his transfer to Broad River on May 31, 2018. (Dkt. No. 62-2
at ¶¶ 2, 5.) Petitioner alleges that while he was
in the RHU he was also denied medical assistance or an x-ray
for his previously broken ribs. (Dkt. Nos. 11 at 5; 68 at 2.)
additionally alleges that while he was in the RHU he was
unlawfully denied outdoor recreation, and because of the
denial he has received sores in his nose and other aches and
pains. (Dkt. Nos. 11 at 5; 68 at 3.) The Defendant Warden, in
an affidavit, asserted that on April 15, 2018, four days
after Plaintiff was placed in lockdown, there was a riot at
Lee Correctional Institution where seven inmates were killed.
(Dkt. No. 62-2 at ¶ 6.) The incident was allegedly
gang-related. (Id.) Therefore, SCDC instituted a
system-wide lockdown, which Defendant instituted at MCI.
(Id. at ¶¶ 7 - 8.) Because of the
lockdown, no inmates at MCI, including Plaintiff, received
outdoor recreation while Plaintiff was at MCI. (Id.
at ¶ 8.)
filed this motion for summary judgment, and the Parties have
since submitted a response, reply, and a sur-reply. (Dkt.
Nos. 62, 68, 74, 75.) The Magistrate Judge recommended
granting Defendants' motion. (Dkt. No. 78.) Plaintiff has
not submitted objections.
Motion for Summary Judgment
prevail on a motion for summary judgment, the movant must
demonstrate that there is no genuine issue of any material
fact and that the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter
of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). The party seeking summary
judgment has the burden of identifying the portions of the
"pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, any
admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any,
which show there is no genuine issue as to any material fact
and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter
of law." Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S.
317, 322 (1986). The Court will construe all inferences and
ambiguities against the movant and in favor of the non-moving
party. U.S. v. Diebold, Inc., 369 U.S. 654, 655
(1962). The existence of a mere scintilla of evidence in
support of the non-moving party's position is
insufficient to withstand a motion for summary judgment.
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 252
(1986). However, an issue of material fact is genuine if the
evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a
verdict in favor of the non-movant. Id. at 257.
the moving party has carried its burden under Rule 56(c), its
opponent must do more than simply show that there is some
metaphysical doubt as to the material facts."
Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp.,
475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986). "In the language of the Rule,
the nonmoving party must come forward with 'specific
facts showing that there is a genuine issue for
trial.'" Id. at 587. "Where the record
taken as a whole could not lead a rational trier of fact to
find for the non-moving party, there is no 'genuine issue
for trial.'" Id. quoting First Nat'l Bank of
Ariz. v. Cities Serv. Co., 391 U.S. 253, 289 (1968).
Report and Recommendation
Magistrate Judge makes only a recommendation to this Court
that has no presumptive weight. The responsibility to make a
final determination remains with the Court. See Mathews
v. Weber,423 U.S. 261, 270-71 (1976). The Court may
"accept, reject, or modify, in whole or in part, the
findings or recommendations made by the magistrate
judge." 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1). This Court must make
a de novo determination of those portions of the R
& R Petitioner specifically objects to. Fed.R.Civ.P.
72(b)(2). Where Petitioner fails to file any specific
objections, "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." Diamond v. Colonial Life
& Accident Ins. Co., 416 F.3d 310, 315 (4th Cir.
2005) (internal quotation omitted). "Moreover, in the
absence of specific objections to the R & R, the Court
need not give any explanation for adopting the
recommendation." Wilson v. S.C. ...