United States District Court, N.D. Alabama, Western Division
Arthur Lee Bonner, Plaintiff, Pro se, Atmore, AL.
For Kenny Waver, Lieutenant, Orlando Walker, Officer, Defendants: Jack W Wallace, Jr., LEAD ATTORNEY, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, Montgomery, AL.
MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
STACI G. CORNELIUS, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
The plaintiff, Arthur Lee Bonner, has filed a pro se amended complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging rights, privileges, or immunities afforded him under the Constitution or laws of the United States were abridged during his incarceration at Bibb Correctional Facility. (Doc. 16). The plaintiff names as defendants Lieutenant Kenny Waver and Correctional Officer Orlanda Walker. The plaintiff seeks injunctive relief.
In accordance with the usual practices of this court and 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1), the complaint was referred to a magistrate judge for a preliminary report and recommendation. See McCarthy v. Bronson, 500 U.S. 136, 111 S.Ct. 1737, 114 L.Ed.2d 194 (1991).
I. Procedural History
On January 14, 2014, the previously assigned magistrate judge entered an order for special report directing the clerk to forward a copy of the amended complaint to the defendants and the defendants to file a special report addressing the factual allegations contained in the amended complaint. (Doc. 17). The magistrate judge advised the defendants their special report should be accompanied by sworn statements and, if appropriate, would be considered as a motion for summary judgment filed pursuant to Rule 56 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. (Id.). By the same order, the magistrate judge notified the plaintiff that after he received a copy of the defendants' special report, he could file affidavits to rebut the report. (Id.).
On April 16, 2014, the defendants filed a special report accompanied by affidavits and institutional documents. (Doc. 24). The undersigned notified the plaintiff the defendants' special report would be construed as a motion for summary judgment and that he would have twenty (20) days to respond by filing affidavits and/or other materials. (Doc. 25). The undersigned further advised the plaintiff of the consequences of any default or failure to comply with Rule 56 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Griffith v. Wainwright, 772 F.2d 822, 825 (11th Cir. 1985). The plaintiff has failed to respond to the defendants' motion for summary judgment.
II. Summary Judgment Standard
Summary judgment may be granted only if the moving party establishes there are no genuine issues of material fact and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56; Clark v. Coats & Clark, Inc., 929 F.2d 604, 608 (11th Cir. 1989). A court must view the evidence in a light most favorable to the non-moving party and must draw all reasonable inferences against the moving party. See Chapman v. AI Transp., 229 F.3d 1012, 1023 (11th Cir. 2000). Unless the plaintiff, who carries the ultimate burden of proving his action, is able to show some evidence with respect to each element of his claim, all other issues of fact become immaterial, and the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322-23, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 91 L.Ed.2d 265 (1986); Bennett v. Parker, 898 F.2d 1530, 1532-33 (11th Cir. 1990).
As the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals has explained:
Facts in dispute cease to be " material" facts when the plaintiff fails to establish a prime facie case. " In such a situation, there can be 'no genuine issue as to any material fact, ' since a complete failure of proof concerning an essential element of the non-moving party's case necessarily renders all other facts immaterial." Thus, under such circumstances, the public official is entitled to judgment as a matter of law, because the plaintiff has failed to carry the burden of proof. This rule facilitates the dismissal of factually unsupported claims prior to trial.
Bennett v. Parker, 898 F.2d at 1532 (quoting Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 91 L.Ed.2d 265 (1986)). " [S]pecific facts" pled in a pro se plaintiff's sworn complaint must be considered in opposition to summary judgment. See ...