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Foerdererr v. Mathias

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

May 30, 2018

LEVI FOERDERER, Plaintiff,
v.
T. MATHIAS, et al., Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

          STACI M. YANDLE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Plaintiff Levi Foerderer, an inmate in the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (“BOP”), filed this lawsuit pursuant to Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents, 403 U.S. 388 (1971) (“Bivens”), alleging that his constitutional rights were violated while he was incarcerated at FCI Greenville (“Greenville”). Specifically, Plaintiff alleges the defendants failed to protect him from other inmates in violation of the Eighth Amendment. Plaintiff further alleges that the defendants' actions resulted in him sustaining injuries and being exposed to an increased risk of violence from inmates who became aware that Plaintiff previously acted as a government witness. Plaintiff filed an Amended Complaint adding claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act (“FTCA”). He is currently proceeding on the following claims:

Count 1:Eighth Amendment claim against Mathias, Goodrich, and Robinson for failure to protect Plaintiff from violence at the hands of inmate Perkins;
Count 2:FTCA claim against the United States for negligence in failing to protect Plaintiff from violence at the hands of other inmates.
Count 3:FTCA claim against the United States for negligence in allowing sensitive information about Plaintiff to be delivered to another inmate in August 2016.

         This case is now before the Court on the Motion for Summary Judgment for Failure to Exhaust Administrative Remedies (Doc. 39) filed by Defendant United States. Plaintiff filed a Response (Doc. 41). For the following reasons, Defendant's motion is DENIED.

         Factual Background

         Foerderer filed this action on April 27, 2017, alleging that Case Manager Mathias, Counselor Goodrich, and Unit Manager Robinson allowed a known violent inmate, Michael Perkins, to be placed in his cell even after he told each of them about his prior history of being assaulted for being a government witness and about a court's finding that he needs extra protection due to his previous cooperation with the government. He alleges that Mathias, Goodrich, and Robinson were all aware of Perkins' history of violence because their positions require them to closely review the files of all inmates on their caseloads. Inmate Perkins was placed in the cell with Foerderer on or around June 3, 2016. Foerderer alleges that on August 20, 2016, he was attacked by Perkins and suffered a broken hand.

         On January 5, 2018, Plaintiff filed an Amended Complaint adding a claim against the United States pursuant to the Federal Tort Claims Act (“FTCA”). In Count II, Foerderer claims that Mathias, Goodrich, and Robinson were acting within the scope of their employment with the BOP and that their failure to protect him constitutes negligence in violation of Illinois common law. In Count III, he asserts that a mailroom employee acting within the scope of his employment, negligently allowed a printout of an email containing dangerous information about Foerderer's cooperation with law enforcement into Greenville FCI sometime between August 10, 2016 and August 19, 2016.

         The following relevant administrative tort claims were filed by Foerderer pursuant to BOP policy:

TRT-02720: Alleges Case Manager Mathias was negligent when Foerderer told her on May 18, 2016 that he was concerned for his safety and, despite language in his judgment and even though he had been at FCI Greenville for one year, she did not put him in for a transfer. Foerderer withdrew this complaint on February 10, 2017.
TRT-02724: Alleges Counselor Goodrich was negligent by assigning a cellmate with a history of violence. Foerderer received a final denial of this claim on May 12, 2017.
TRT-02725: Alleges that Unit Manager Robinson was negligent by allowing Case Manager Mathias to keep him at a medium security facility when he had low points. Foerderer withdrew this complaint on February 10, 2017.
TRT-03080: Alleges mailroom staffer at FCI Greenville was negligent in August 2016 in allowing sensitive information to be delivered to another inmate, leading to Plaintiff being assaulted. Foerderer received a final ...

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