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Jackson v. Nevins

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

May 22, 2018

CURTIS O. JACKSON, Plaintiffs,
v.
KHRIS NEVINS, et al., Defendants.

          Hon. Robert J. Jonker J.

          REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          Ray Kent United States Magistrate Judge

         This is a pro se civil rights action brought by a prisoner in the custody of the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC). This matter is now before the Court on a motion for summary judgment filed by defendants Nevins, Hogle, Huss, Wood, Corbett, Lewis, Grandy, Karber, Christiansen, Thebo, and Cheney (ECF No. 79). The motion is unopposed.

         I. Background

         Plaintiff's complaint involved 21 causes of action of alleged unconstitutional conduct which spanned over one year at the Ionia Correctional Facility (ICF).[1] Defendants have moved for summary judgment on some of plaintiff's claims for lack of exhaustion.

         II. Defendants' motion for summary judgment

         A. Legal standard

         “The 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). Rule 56 further provides that a party asserting that a fact cannot be or is genuinely disputed must support the assertion by:

(A) citing to particular parts of materials in the record, including depositions, documents, electronically stored information, affidavits or declarations, stipulations (including those made for purposes of the motion only), admissions, interrogatory answers, or other materials; or
(B) showing that the materials cited do not establish the absence or presence of a genuine dispute, or that an adverse party cannot produce admissible evidence to support the fact.

Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c)(1).

         In Copeland v. Machulis, 57 F.3d 476 (6th Cir. 1995), the court set forth the parties' burden of proof in a motion for summary judgment:

The moving party bears the initial burden of establishing an absence of evidence to support the nonmoving party's case. Once the moving party has met its burden of production, the nonmoving party cannot rest on its pleadings, but must present significant probative evidence in support of the complaint to defeat the motion for summary judgment. The mere existence of a scintilla of evidence to support plaintiff's position will be insufficient; there must be evidence on which the jury could reasonably find for the plaintiff.

Copeland, 57 F.3d at 478-79 (citations omitted). “In deciding a motion for summary judgment, the court views the factual evidence and draws all reasonable inferences in favor of the nonmoving party.” McLean v. 988011 Ontario Ltd., 224 F.3d 797, 800 (6th Cir. 2000).

         “The fact that there has been no response to a summary judgment motion does not, of course, mean that the motion is to be granted automatically.” Champion v. Artuz, 76 F.3d 483, 486 (2d Cir. 1996). The trial court is required to “intelligently and carefully review the legitimacy of such unresponded-to motion” and cannot “blithely accept the conclusions argued in the motion.” Guarino v. Brookfield Township Trustees, 980 F.2d 399, 407 (6th Cir. 1992). However, when a motion for summary judgment is unopposed, “[n]othing in either the Rules or case law supports an argument that the trial court must conduct its own probing investigation of the record” to demonstrate the existence of genuine issues of material fact. Id. at 405.

         B. ...


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