Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Reeves v. Cathers

United States District Court, E.D. Kentucky, Southern Division

July 15, 2019

ANDREW ALLEN REEVES, Plaintiff,
v.
TRAVIS CATHERS, et al., Defendants.

          RECOMMENDED DISPOSITION

          HANLY A. INGRAM UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         In June 2017, the Clerk of Court docketed a complaint by pro se Plaintiff Andrew Allen Reeves in which he alleges violation of his constitutional rights by the jailer and various correctional officers at the Laurel County Correctional Center. See D.E. 1. Now, the defendants, Sgt. Travis Cathers, Lt. Shawn Davis, Det. Billy Madden, and Jailer Jamie Mosley[1] have filed their second motion for summary judgment. D.E. 46. The District Judge has referred this matter to the undersigned for a recommendation. See D.E. 16; D.E. 30. For the following reasons, the Court RECOMMENDS that the defendants' motion (D.E. 46) be GRANTED.

         I.

         A short discussion of the procedural posture of this case gives context to the defendants' motion. Reeves's original complaint was docketed on June 5, 2017. See D.E. 1. In his complaint, Reeves alleges that Sgt. Cathers struck him in the jaw while his hands were handcuffed behind his back, that Lt. Davis was deliberately indifferent to the situation and disregarded the grievances that Reeves filed, that Det. Madden failed to investigate the situation properly, and that Jailer Mosley “failed to take any action.” See Id. at 2. Based on these allegations, Reeves claims that the defendants violated his Eighth Amendment rights by subjecting him to cruel and unusual punishment and by failing to protect him. See Id. at 4.

         In September 2018, the defendants filed their first motion for summary judgment. See D.E. 34. That motion was based on Reeves's failure to answer certain questions in discovery posed to him by the defendants. See Id. However, the Court determined summary judgment was not proper at that time because the defendants did not meaningfully discuss the elements Reeves would be required to prove to succeed on his Eighth Amendment claims. See D.E. 42 at 3.

         The defendants filed their second motion for summary judgment on February 18, 2019. See D.E. 46. The next day, the undersigned ordered Reeves to file a response to the defendants' motion on or before March 18, 2019. See D.E. 48. Reeves did not file a response to the defendants' motion, and he has not made any filings with the Court since September 2018. The defendants' motion now stands submitted to the undersigned for a recommended disposition. See D.E. 30; see also D.E. 16.

         As will be explained below, the Court recommends that the defendants' motion for summary judgment be granted for two reasons. First, Reeves failed to respond to the motion, meaning it is unopposed. Second, even viewing the facts in the light most favorable to Reeves, his claims fail on the merits.

         II.

         A motion for summary judgment under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56 challenges the viability of the other party's claim by asserting that at least one essential element of that claim is not supported by legally sufficient evidence. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 324-25 (1986). Under Rule 56(a), “[t]he court shall grant summary judgment if the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute of material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”

         III.

         A. Reeves's Failure to Respond to the Defendants' Motion

         The defendants are first entitled to summary judgment because Reeves failed to respond to their motion. Importantly, Local Rule 7.1 permits this result. That rule provides in relevant part that: “Failure to timely respond to a motion may be grounds for granting the motion.” LR 7.1(c). In this case, the parties' dispositive motions deadline was February 18, 2019, see Docket Entry 42 at 3, and Reeves was apprised of the need to file a response to the defendants' motion by the Court's order at Docket Entry 48.

         Although pro se litigants are entitled to leniency from the Court and to liberal construction of their pleadings, they are still required to comply with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the Local Rules of this Court, and Court orders. Because Reeves did not respond to the defendants' motion for summary judgment, the Court views the motion as unopposed and will recommend that the motion be granted.

         B. Reeves's § 1983 Claims

         Although the defendants are entitled to summary judgment because of Reeves's failure to timely respond to their motion, the Court will briefly address each of Reeves's claims on the merits brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.

         “Section 1983 creates no substantive rights, but merely provides remedies for deprivations of rights established elsewhere.” Flint ex rel. Flint v. Ky. Dep't of Corr., 270 F.3d 340, 351 (6th Cir. 2001). Two elements are required to state a claim under § 1983. Gomez v. Toledo, 446 U.S. 635, 640 (1980). “[A] plaintiff must allege the violation of a right secured by the Constitution and laws of the United States, and must show that the alleged deprivation was committed by a person acting under color of state law.” West v. Atkins, ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.