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Martin v. Radford

June 29, 2010


The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge George M. Marovich


Plaintiff James Martin ("Martin") filed a two-count complaint against defendants Bennie Radford ("Radford") and Nikki Robinson ("Robinson"). Plaintiff brought suit under § 1983 and alleged that defendants violated Martin's constitutional rights by arresting him and by interfering with his right to access the courts. Defendants Radford and Robinson move for summary judgment. For the reasons set forth below, the Court grants the motion.

I. Background

Local Rule 56.1 outlines the requirements for the introduction of facts parties would like considered in connection with a motion for summary judgment. The Court enforces Local Rule 56.1 strictly. Facts that are argued but do not conform with the rule are not considered by the Court. For example, facts included in a party's brief but not in its statement of facts are not considered by the Court because to do so would rob the other party of the opportunity to show that such facts are disputed. Where one party supports a fact with admissible evidence and the other party fails to controvert the fact with citation to admissible evidence, the Court deems the fact admitted. See Ammons v. Aramark Uniform Services, Inc., 368 F.3d 809, 817-818 (7th Cir. 2004). This does not, however, absolve the party putting forth the fact of its duty to support the fact with admissible evidence. Here, plaintiff has failed to respond to defendants' motion for summary judgment.*fn1 The Court did not automatically deem every fact put forth admitted; rather, the Court carefully considered whether each asserted fact was supported by admissible evidence. Asserted "facts" not supported by deposition testimony, documents, affidavits or other evidence admissible for summary judgment purposes are not considered by the Court.

The following facts are disputed.

During the relevant time period, defendant Radford worked as a parole agent for the Illinois Department of Corrections. Defendant Robinson was a parole-agent supervisor for the sex offender unit of the Illinois Department of Corrections. Robinson supervised Radford.

In May 2006, plaintiff Martin was released from the Illinois Department of Corrections for a period of mandatory supervised release. The offense for which he had been incarcerated rendered him eligible for sex offender counseling, electronic monitoring and registration under the Illinois Sex Offender Registration Act. Among other things, Martin was required, as part of his mandatory supervised release, to sign onto Electronic Home Monitoring Rules, which required him to maintain an address with a working telephone. Martin was also assigned a parole agent, which was defendant Radford.

When Martin was first released, he found a place to live that complied with the housing requirements of his mandatory supervised released. Martin became a resident of Soaring Eagle Homes, an organization that provides housing for individuals trying to get back on their feet. Residents at Soaring Eagle did not sign leases. Instead, Soaring Eagle allowed residents to stay so long as they paid their rent and complied with the house rules. The Soaring Eagle house rules, among other things, required residents to maintain a clean and healthy living atmosphere and prohibited overnight guests.

Martin had problems at Soaring Eagle almost immediately. By May 26, 2006, Soaring Eagle's Executive Director, Elroy Reed ("Reed"), sent Martin a letter warning him that he had violated house rules and could be evicted. On June 8, 2006, Reed sent Martin a notice that he would be evicted in five days for failure to pay rent and for his continued violations of house rules. Defendant Radford (Martin's parole agent) met with Reed about Martin's failure to comply with house rules. Reed agreed to give Martin more time to correct his behavior. Martin paid his rent, but he continued to violate Soaring Eagle's house rules.

On July 1, 2006, Reed contacted defendant Radford about Martin's behavior. Reed told Radford that Martin was rude and unwilling to comply with the house rules. Reed also told Radford that Martin had had an overnight guest in violation of Soaring Eagle's rules. Reed informed Radford that Martin could no longer stay at Soaring Eagle.

Later that day, Radford went to find Martin. Radford picked Martin up while he was on his way to work. Radford informed Martin that Soaring Eagle would not allow him to stay any longer. Radford also told Martin that she needed him to give her another address where he could stay. Martin responded that Soaring Eagle "couldn't just put [him] out." Radford drove Martin to the parole office, where both Radford and defendant Robinson (Radford's supervisor) met with Martin. Robinson explained to Martin that he could no longer stay at Soaring Eagle. Both Radford and Robinson asked Martin to provide an alternate address, but Martin refused. When Robinson asked Martin if he could provide the address of a relative with whom Martin could stay, Martin said that he did not want to subject his family to any of his parole conditions.

During the meeting, Radford and/or Robinson requested a warrant for Martin's arrest. The warrant, which was issued for Martin's failure to comply with the housing requirement of his mandatory supervised release, was issued that afternoon. By 2:38 p.m., Martin had been taken into custody. He was transported to Stateville Correctional Center until he could find housing that complied with the terms of his mandatory supervised release.

It is undisputed that at the time of his July 1, 2006 arrest, Martin was not in the process of ...

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