United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
THOMAS R. SNELLING (#262770) Plaintiff,
PAUL KLEE, et al., Defendants.
ANTHONY P. PATTI MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART
DEFENDANTS' MOTIONS FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT [ECF NO. 15; ECF
Victoria A. Roberts United States District Judge.
Roger Snelling (“Snelling”) filed this action
against twenty-one defendants, all of whom are corrections
officers, wardens, and employees at the Gus Harrison
Correctional Facility (“ARF”). He alleges that
the Defendants violated the First, Fifth, Eighth and
Fourteenth Amendments, as well as 42 U.S.C. § 1983, in
their treatment of him.
filed this motion for summary judgment under Fed.R.Civ.P. 56.
They argue that: (1) Snelling failed to adhere to Michigan
Department of Corrections' (“MDOC”) grievance
procedures; and, (2) the Eleventh Amendment bars
Snelling's official capacity claims.
the reasons stated, the Court GRANTS IN PART and DENIES IN
PART Defendants' motions for summary judgment.
is incarcerated at the MDOC's Marquette Branch Prison. On
October 7, 2015, while at the ARF, Snelling filed a complaint
in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of
Michigan against twenty-one Defendants, each of whom was sued
in his or her official and personal capacities.
October 26, 2015, Judge Quist entered an order of partial
dismissal and transferred the case to this Court. He
dismissed two of the Defendants “for failure to state a
claim pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, 42 U.S.C. §
1997e(c).” Nineteen Defendants remain.
Defendants filed a motion for summary judgment. Paul Klee,
Donald Ricumstrict, Kenneth Salisbury, James Eaton, Richard
Newsome, Stephan Braman, Thomas Schulz, Steve Haines, Brian
Stuart, Adam Gust, Charles Clark, David Hill, Paul Stoyk,
Bruce Barden, Steven Kindinger, Gary King, Brian Evers, and
Angela Holman joined in one motion. David Martin filed a
separate motion, adopting the motion filed by the others.
Each motion contends that (a) Snelling failed to exhaust his
grievances and (b) the official capacity claims should be
motions are fully briefed.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56, “[t]he court shall
grant summary judgment 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 if it might affect the outcome of the case
under governing law. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby,
Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 249 (1986). The Court “views
the evidence, all facts, and any inferences that may be drawn
from the facts in the light most favorable to the nonmoving
party.” Pure Tech Sys., Inc. v. Mt. Hawley Ins.
Co., 95 F. App'x 132, 135 (6th Cir. 2004) (internal
moving party has the initial burden of proving that no
genuine issue of material fact exists . . . .”
Stansberry v. Air Wis. Airlines Corp., 651 F.3d 482,
486 (6th Cir. 2011) (internal quotations omitted); cf.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56 (e)(2) (providing that if a party
“fails to properly address another party's
assertion of fact, ” then the court may “consider
the fact undisputed for the purposes of the motion.”).
“Once the moving party satisfies its burden, ‘the
burden shifts to the nonmoving party to set forth specific
facts showing a triable issue.'” Wrench LLC v.
Taco Bell Corp., 256 F.3d 446, 453 (6th Cir. 2001)
(quoting Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio
Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587 (1986)). The nonmoving party
must “make an affirmative showing with proper evidence
in order to defeat the motion.” Alexander v.
CareSource, 576 F.3d 551, 558 (6th Cir. 2009); see
also Metro. Gov't of Nashville & Davidson Cnty.,
432 F. App'x 435, 441 (6th Cir. 2011) (“The
nonmovant must, however, do more than simply show that there
is some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts . . . .
[T]here must be evidence upon which a reasonable jury could
return a verdict in favor of the non-moving party to create a
genuine dispute.”) (internal quotation marks and
judgment is appropriate if the evidence favoring the
nonmoving party is merely colorable or is not significantly
probative. City Management Corp. v. United States Chem.
Co., 43 F.3d 244, 254 (6th Cir. 1994). In other words,
summary judgment is appropriate when “a motion for
summary judgment is properly made and supported and the
nonmoving party fails to respond with a showing sufficient to
establish an essential element of its case. . . .”
Stansberry, 651 F.3d at 486 (citing Celotex
Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 371, 322-23 (1986)).
Snelling bases his claims on the First, Fifth, Eighth and