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Beard v. Federal Bureau of Prisons

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

June 4, 2018

LIONEL R. BEARD, Plaintiff,
v.
FEDERAL BUREAU OF PRISONS, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, ASSISTANT MANAGER HUMPHRIES and FRED FALMIER, Defendants.

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          DONALD G. WILKERSON, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         This matter has been referred to United States Magistrate Judge Donald G. Wilkerson by United States District J. Phil Gilbert pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B), Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 72(b), and SDIL-LR 72.1(a) for a Report and Recommendation on the Motion for Summary Judgment filed by Defendant United States (Doc. 22). For the reasons set forth below, it is RECOMMENDED the motion for Summary Judgment be GRANTED and the Court adopt the following findings of fact and conclusions of law.

         Findings of Fact

         Plaintiff Lionel Beard is an inmate who is currently incarcerated at the Federal Correctional Institution in Greenville, Illinois. Beard alleges that on August 11, 2015 he was verbally and physically assaulted by UNICOR factory supervisor Fred Falmier while at the United States Penitentiary in Marion, Illinois (Doc. 12-1). An assistant manager, Defendant Humphries, was present during the incident but did not intervene or otherwise attempt to stop the assault (Doc. 12-1, pp. 3-4). When Beard filed a complaint, he was transferred to USP-Marion's Special Housing Unit (SHU), where he remained for at least five months while the matter was investigated (Doc. 12-1, p. 4). Before he was ever interviewed, Plaintiff was transferred to FCI-Greenville (Doc. 12-1, p. 4). Beard filed the pending action alleging negligence and/or deliberate indifference of these federal officials under the Federal Tort Claims Act (“FTCA”), 28 U.S.C. §§ 1346, 2671-80 (Doc. 12-1, p. 7).

         The Court conducted a threshold review of Beard's Amended Complaint, and he was allowed to proceed on the following claims:

Count 1 - Falmier exhibited deliberate indifference toward Plaintiff, in violation of the Eighth Amendment and under Bivens, when he/she verbally and physically assaulted Plaintiff on August 11, 2015.
Count 2 - Humphries exhibited deliberate indifference toward Plaintiff, in violation of the Eighth Amendment and under Bivens, when he/she failed to intervene and stop the assault or assist Plaintiff in filing a complaint on August 11, 2015.
Count 3 - The United States is liable under the FTCA for Falmier's assault of Plaintiff and Humphries' failure to intervene and stop the assault on August 11, 2015.

(Doc. 15)

         Legal Standard

         Summary judgment is proper only if the moving party can demonstrate there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986); Ruffin-Thompkins v. Experian Information Solutions, Inc., 422 F.3d 603, 607 (7th Cir. 2005). Any doubt as to the existence of a genuine issue of fact must be resolved against the moving party. Adickes v. S.H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 160 (1970); Lawrence v. Kenosha Cnty., 391 F.3d 837, 841 (7th Cir. 2004).

         A moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law where the non-moving party “has failed to make a sufficient showing on an essential element of her case with respect to which she has the burden of proof.” Celotex Corp. v. Carett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). A party asserting that a fact is genuinely disputed must support that assertion by citing to particular materials in the record or by showing that the materials in the record do not establish the absence of a genuine dispute. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56. If the non-moving party does not show evidence exists that would reasonably allow a fact-finder to decide in their favor on a material issue, the court must enter summary judgment against them. Waldridge v. Am. Hoechst Corp., 24 F.3d 918, 920 (7th Cir. 1994).

         The Seventh Circuit has stated summary judgment is “the put up or shut up moment in a lawsuit, when a party must show what evidence it has that would convince a trier of fact to accept its version of the events.” Steen v. Myers, 486 F.3d 1017, 1022 (7th Cir. 2007) (quoting Hammel v. Eau Galle Cheese Factory, 407 F.3d 852, 859 (7th Cir. 2005)).

         Conclusions ...


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