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Chadwick v. Mondoux

September 28, 2007


The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gary L. Sharpe, United States District Judge


In this civil rights complaint, plaintiff alleges that defendants violated his constitutional rights when they failed to protect him from assault by a known enemy. (Dkt. No. 1). Plaintiff also alleges that defendant Mondoux failed to provide plaintiff with a grievance form so that he could file a complaint. Plaintiff seeks "to be compensated." Plaintiff also appears to seek some sort of injunctive relief.

Presently before the court is defendants' motion for summary judgment pursuant to FED. R. CIV. P. 56. (Dkt. No. 28). Plaintiff has not responded to defendants' motion.*fn1 For the following reasons, this court agrees with defendants and will dismiss the complaint.


1. Summary Judgment

Summary judgment may be granted when the moving party carries its burden of showing the absence of a genuine issue of material fact. FED. R. CIV. P. 56; Thompson v. Gjivoje, 896 F.2d 716, 720 (2d Cir. 1990) (citations omitted). "Ambiguities or inferences to be drawn from the facts must be viewed in the light most favorable to the party opposing the summary judgment motion." Id. However, when the moving party has met its burden, the nonmoving party must do more than "simply show that there is some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts." Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 585-86 (1986); see also Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 247-48 (1986). At that point, the nonmoving party must move forward with specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial. Id.

2. Facts

The complaint in this action is not very specific regarding the facts surrounding the incidents in question. However, the defendants have submitted a great deal of information, clarifying the complaint. Plaintiff claims that on May 22, 2005, while an inmate in B-Pod*fn2 of the Washington County Jail, he was involved in an "altercation" with three other inmates, one of whom was Mark McKoy.*fn3 Plaintiff blames the altercation on defendant Mondoux because although Mondoux was allegedly "informed" that there was a "problem" in B-Pod, he failed to "resolve" the problem. Plaintiff states that after Corrections Officer Bump intervened to stop the fight, inmate McKoy was removed from the housing unit. Plaintiff states that a few weeks later, he was moved to the Special Housing Unit*fn4 (SHU) for an unrelated incident.

Plaintiff states that during the time that he was in SHU, inmate McKoy was returned to B-Pod. On June 13, 2005, plaintiff was also returned to B-Pod. Plaintiff states that defendants Under sheriff Matt Mabb and Lieutenant George Smith, decided to put plaintiff back in B-Pod without considering plaintiff's safety. Plaintiff claims that during the evening of June 13, 2005, defendant Martell was "playing games" on the computer instead of watching the inmates on the Pod, when inmate McKoy assaulted plaintiff, causing him to suffer an injury below his eye requiring stitches and severe pain in his neck.*fn5 Plaintiff claims that defendant Martell failed to pull the "duress pin" and did not come over to see if plaintiff needed help for five to seven minutes after the incident.

Finally, plaintiff alleges that he requested a "grievance" from defendant Martell, who referred plaintiff to defendant Mondoux. Defendant Mondoux allegedly told plaintiff that the situation was "not grievable."

In support of their motion for summary judgment, defendants have submitted the affidavits of Corrections Officer Bump, Corrections Officer Martell, and Lieutenant George Smith. Defendants have also submitted the transcript of plaintiff's July 18, 2006 deposition, his response to defendants' request for admissions, other documents relating to these incidents, and a DVD of the assault itself.

In his affidavit, Officer Bump states that on May 22, 2005, he witnessed an altercation involving four inmates. Bump Aff. ¶ 2. The fight initially involved inmates Donni Adams and Darren Sylvester. Id. During the fight between Adams and Sylvester, inmate McKoy joined the fight and began trying to kick inmate Adams while he was on the ground. Id. Officer Bump attempted to break up the fight, and as he was trying to do so, plaintiff Chadwick joined the altercation and hit inmate McKoy. Id. All inmates were separated and given either 24 or 48 hours of "keeplock." Id. Inmates Adams, Sylvester, and McKoy were sent to SHU for 48 hours, while plaintiff remained on B-Pod.*fn6 Id.

Officer Bump filed an incident report, which has been included as Defendants' Exhibit F. The incident report notes that inmate McKoy had been "locked in" by Officer Ray earlier in the day for refusing to "lock-in." Plaintiff was charged with fighting and received 24 hours of keeplock as a penalty. Defendants' Exs. G, H. Officer Bump states that he does not recall inmate McKoy or any other inmate threatening plaintiff after the fight with retaliation of any kind. Bump Aff. ¶ 3.

Officer Martell states in his affidavit that he was not working on May 22, 2005, so he did not see or hear the altercation. Martell Aff. ¶ 5. Defendant Martell states that on June 13, 2005, he was at his observation post, entering data into his computer when another inmate told him that "something" had happened between two inmates. Id. ¶ 6. When defendant Martell looked up from his desk, he saw inmate McKoy arguing with plaintiff who was seated at one of the day-room tables. Id. Officer Martell told McKoy to return to his cell, and defendant Martell locked McKoy's cell door from the observation post. Defendant Martell states ...

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