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Jarrett v. Michigan Department of Corrections

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

March 11, 2015

CLARENCE JARRETT, Plaintiff,
v.
MICHIGAN DEPARTMENT of CORRECTIONS, et al., Defendants.

ORDER OVERRULING OBJECTIONS (DOCUMENT NO. 85), ADOPTING REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION (DOCUMENT NO. 82), GRANTING STIEVE'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT (DOCUMENT NO. 36), AND DENYING JARRETT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT (DOCUMENT NO. 47)

STEPHEN J. MURPHY III, District Judge.

On January 27, 2014, Clarence Jarrett, an inmate in the custody of the Michigan Department of Corrections ("MDOC"), filed a pro se civil rights complaint under 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983 against MDOC, Corizon Healthcare (an MDOC contractor that provides medical care to inmates), and numerous prison personnel, including doctors, nurses, and administrative officials. Jarrett alleges Defendants acted with deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs, in violation of the Eighth Amendment.

The Court referred all pre-trial matters to Magistrate Judge R. Steven Whalen. Before the Court is a motion for summary judgment by Defendant Jeffrey Stieve, ECF No. 36, and a motion for summary judgment by Jarrett, ECF No. 47. The motions have been fully briefed. On February 3, 2015, the magistrate judge issued a Report and Recommendation ("Report"), recommending the Court grant Stieve's motion for summary judgment and deny Jarrett's motion for summary judgment. ECF No. 82. Jarrett filed a timely objection to the Report. ECF No. 85.

Civil Rule 72(b) governs review of a magistrate judge's report. De novo review of a magistrate judge's findings is only required if the parties "serve and file specific written objections to the proposed findings and recommendations." Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(2). Nevertheless, because the Court always retains jurisdiction over a motion after referring it to a magistrate judge, a district judge is entitled to review the magistrate judge's findings of fact and conclusions of law. See Thomas v. Arn, 474 U.S. 140, 154 (1985) (clarifying that while a district court judge need not review a report and recommendation " de novo if no objections are filed, it does not preclude further review by the district judge, sua sponte or at the request of a party, under a de novo or any other standard"). After examining the record and considering Jarrett's objection de novo, the Court concludes his arguments do not have merit. Accordingly, the Court will overrule Jarrett's objection, adopt the magistrate judge's Report, grant Stieve's motion for summary judgment, and deny Jarrett's motion for summary judgment.

BACKGROUND

The magistrate judge's Report succinctly details the events giving rise to Jarrett's action against Stieve. Report 2-4, ECF No. 82. In the interest of brevity, the Court will adopt that portion of the Report.

STANDARD OF REVIEW

Summary judgment is warranted "if the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A fact is "material" for purposes of summary judgment if proof of that fact would establish or refute an essential element of the cause of action or defense. Kendall v. Hoover Co., 751 F.2d 171, 174 (6th Cir. 1984). A dispute over material facts is "genuine" "if the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party." Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986).

In considering a motion for summary judgment, the Court must view the facts and draw all reasonable inferences in a light most favorable to the nonmoving party. 60 Ivy St. Corp. v. Alexander, 822 F.2d 1432, 1435 (6th Cir. 1987). The Court must take care, in evaluating the motion, not to make judgments on the quality of the evidence, because the purpose of summary judgment is to determine whether a triable claim exists. Doe v. Metro. Nashville Pub. Schs., 133 F.3d 384, 387 (6th Cir. 1998) ("[W]eigh[ing] the evidence... is never appropriate at the summary judgment stage.").

DISCUSSION

Jarrett makes a single claim in his objection to the Report: that the magistrate judge was incorrect in concluding that Jarrett failed to make out a claim for deliberate indifference.

A claim for deliberate indifference requires the plaintiff to satisfy both objective and subjective components. The objective component is satisfied by showing that the medical need at issue is sufficiently serious. Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 834 (1994). The subjective component requires the plaintiff to "allege facts which, if true, would show that the official being sued subjectively perceived facts from which to infer substantial risk to the prisoner, that he did in fact draw the inference, and that he then disregarded that risk." Comstock v. McCrary, 273 F.2d 693, 703 (6th Cir. 2001). The magistrate judge concluded Jarrett met the objective prong of the inquiry, but failed to satisfy the subjective prong. Report 7, ECF No. 82.

Jarrett takes issue with the Report's third footnote:

The Plaintiff contests Dr. Stieve's statement that he did not see him on December 8, 2011. However, even if that fact is in dispute, and even if it were resolved in the Plaintiff's favor, that does not change the conclusion that ...

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