United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Charleston Division
Timothy M. Cain Anderson, United States District Judge
case arises from alleged incidents of prison violence
occurring at Lee Correctional Institution (“LCI”)
in Bishopville, South Carolina. Originally, this action was
filed in state court by several prisoners, including
Plaintiff Jeffery Brown (“Brown”), who allege
that they were victims of violence by other inmates while
housed at LCI. (ECF No. 1-1). Plaintiffs, who are represented
by counsel, asserted claims against Defendants South Carolina
Department of Corrections (“SCDC”), Warden
Cecilia Reynolds, and Warden Aaron Joyner pursuant to 42
U.S.C. § 1983 and state law. See Id.
The action was removed to federal court, (ECF No. 1), and the
court severed it into separate actions. (ECF No.
like each plaintiff in the related actions, alleges that he
was assaulted and severely injured by other inmates at LCI
and that his injuries were “a direct and proximate
result of Defendant SCDC's gross negligence in failing to
employ sufficient correctional officers, failure to enforce
its policies and procedures, and in failing to train or
retrain its correctional officer to comply with the existing
policies and procedures.” (ECF No. 21 at 8). Brown also
claims that his injuries resulted from the deliberate
indifference of Defendants Warden Reynolds and Joyner in that
they failed to ensure “that the correctional officers
at Lee Correctional institution comply with all SCDC policies
and procedures.” Id.
Brown's individual action, he alleged in the original
complaint that “[i]n or about March 2017, ” he
was attacked one morning after breakfast by two fellow
inmates, suffering a stab wound to his right ear and a
scalpel cut to his right arm. (ECF No. 1-1 at 10). Brown
alleges that there were no correctional officers in the area
where he was assaulted; however, an officer subsequently
noticed blood from the attack and sent Brown to the infirmary
where a nurse cleaned his wounds, gave him antibiotic cream
and ibuprofen, and released him. Id.
filed a global motion for summary judgment in each of the
severed actions. (ECF No. 102). As to Brown, Defendants seek
summary judgment on all of his claims against all Defendants.
(ECF No. 102-1 at 5-6). Defendants contend that there is no
evidence that Brown was ever injured as alleged or that he
was even housed at LCI when the alleged attack occurred.
Id. at 6. According to the affidavit of LCI
Associate Warden Kenneth Sharp, Brown was not an inmate at
LCI in March 2017. (ECF No. 102-2 at 2). Rather, he was
transferred from LCI to the Broad River facility on February
23, 2017. Id. Brown remained at Broad River until
March 2, 2017 when he was transferred to Lieber Correctional.
Id. Additionally, Defendants note that the record in
this case, which includes Brown's 276-page medical file
from SCDC, does not reflect that Brown was treated-at LCI or
any other facility-for a stab wound to his right ear or a cut
to his right arm. (ECF No. 102-1 at 6).
for plaintiffs in the related actions filed a global response
in opposition to summary judgment. (ECF No. 106). In
conjunction with this response, Brown submitted an affidavit
in opposition to the motion for summary judgment against him,
reasserting that his claims are based on an “assault
by gang members on or about March 1, 2017.” (ECF No.
106-7 at 2). Brown argues that his affidavit has created a
genuine issue of fact that precludes summary judgment. (ECF
No. 106 at 15). Neither the response nor Brown's
affidavit, however, addressed Defendants' specific
contention that Brown was not housed at LCI in March 2017.
accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1) and Local Civil
Rule 73.02, D.S.C., this matter was referred to a magistrate
judge for pretrial handling. After conducting a global
hearing on the summary judgment motion for all of the related
cases, (ECF No. 108), the magistrate judge issued a Report
and Recommendation (“Report”) recommending that
the court grant summary judgment as to Brown's claims and
terminate his case. (ECF No. 116 at 8). The Report notes that
Brown failed to address Defendants' evidence showing that
Brown was not at LCI in March 2017 and that there was nothing
in his medical file reflecting treatment for the injuries he
alleges in this action. Id. at 7-8. The magistrate
judge concluded that, “[e]ven construed in the light
most favorable to [Brown], the evidence does not create a
genuine issue of material fact as to Brown's
claims.” Id. at 8.
parties were advised of their right to file objections to the
Report and of the consequences for failing to do so.
Id. at 13. Brown, however, did not file objections
to the magistrate judge's recommended disposition of his
Report has no presumptive weight and the responsibility to
make a final determination in this matter remains with this
court. See Mathews v. Weber, 423 U.S. 261, 270-71
(1976). In the absence of objections, this court is not
required to provide an explanation for adopting the Report.
See Camby v. Davis, 718 F.2d 198, 199 (4th Cir.
1983). Rather, “in the absence of a 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.” Diamond v. Colonial Life &
Accident Ins. Co., 416 F.3d 310, 315 (4th Cir. 2005)
(quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 72 advisory committee's note).
Furthermore, failure to file specific written objections to
the Report results in a party's waiver of the right to
appeal the district court's judgment based upon that
recommendation. See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1);
Thomas v. Arn, 474 U.S. 140 (1985); United
States v. Schronce, 727 F.2d 91 (4th Cir. 1984).
thorough review of the Report, the submissions of the parties
and the record in this case, the court finds no clear error.
Accordingly, the court ADOPTS the Report of the magistrate
judge (ECF No. 116) as it pertains to Brown's claims and
incorporates it by reference. Accordingly, Defendants'
motion for summary judgment as to Brown's claims is
GRANTED (ECF No. 102).
 In the original action, there were
seven plaintiffs. (ECF No. 1-1). After dismissing Plaintiff
Jabari Moore's § 1983 claims and remanding his
remaining claims to state court, the court severed the action
into six ...