United States District Court, N.D. New York
WILLIAM T. GRANT, Plaintiff,
BRIAN FISCHER, Commissioner, New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision; D. VENETTOZI, Acting Director, Special Housing, Inmate Disciplinary Program; R. BOISSY, Senior Correctional Counselor, Great Meadow Correctional Facility; and WINNEY, formerly known as Atkinson, Defendants.
WILLIAM T. GRANT Green Haven Correctional Facility P.O.
Plaintiff pro se.
OF THE NEW YORKORIANA L. CARRAVETTA, AAG STATE ATTORNEY
GENERAL Litigation Bureau The Capitol Albany, Attorneys for
MEMORANDUM-DECISION AND ORDER
D'Agostino, U.S. District Judge.
an inmate in the custody of the New York State Department of
Corrections and Community Supervision ("DOCCS"),
brought this civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §
1983, alleging that Defendants violated his constitutional
rights while he was incarcerated at Great Meadow Correctional
Facility ("Great Meadow C.F."). See Dkt.
No. 23. Specifically, Plaintiff challenges the due process he
was afforded in connection with a disciplinary hearing he
received as a result of being issued a misbehavior report.
6, 2016, Defendants moved for summary judgment. See
Dkt. No. 44. In their motion, Defendants contend that
Plaintiff was not deprived of a liberty interest as a result
of the October 17, 2011 disciplinary hearing and, even if he
was, his claim still fails because he was afforded all
process due to him. See Dkt. No. 44-2 at 7-20. On
March 10, 2017, Magistrate Judge Stewart issued a
Report-Recommendation and Order in which he recommended that
the Court grant Defendants' motion and dismiss this case.
See Dkt. No. 62. Specifically, Magistrate Judge
Stewart found that, although questions of fact exist as to
whether Plaintiff was deprived of a liberty interest, summary
judgment is nevertheless appropriate because Plaintiff was
afforded all process due to him. See Id. at 9-16.
before the Court are Defendants' motion for summary
judgment and Magistrate Judge Stewart's
Report-Recommendation and Order.
neither party objected to Magistrate Judge Stewart's
recitation of the relevant background facts, and because it
is consistent with the record, the Court adopts the factual
background set forth in Magistrate Judge Stewart's
Report-Recommendation and Order. See Dkt. No. 62 at
may grant a motion for summary judgment only if it determines
that there is no genuine issue of material fact to be tried
and that the facts as to which there is no such issue warrant
judgment for the movant as a matter of law. See Chambers
v. TRM Copy Ctrs. Corp., 43 F.3d 29, 36 (2d Cir. 1994)
(citations omitted). When analyzing a summary judgment
motion, the court "cannot try issues of fact; it can
only determine whether there are issues to be tried."
Id. at 36-37 (quotation and other citation omitted).
Moreover, it is well-settled that a party opposing a motion
for summary judgment may not simply rely on the assertions in
its pleadings. See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477
U.S. 317, 324 (1986) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c) (e)).
assessing the record to determine whether any such issues of
material fact exist, the court is required to resolve all
ambiguities and draw all reasonable inferences in favor of
the nonmoving party. See Chambers, 43 F.3d at 36
(citing Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S.
242, 255, 106 S.Ct. 2502, 2513-14, 91 L.Ed.2d 202 (1986))
(other citations omitted). Where the non-movant either does
not respond to the motion or fails to dispute the
movant's statement of material facts, the court may not
rely solely on the moving party's Rule 56.1 statement;
rather the court must be satisfied that the citations to
evidence in the record support the movant's assertions.
See Giannullo v. City of N.Y., 322 F.3d 139, 143 n.5
(2d Cir. 2003) (holding that not verifying in the record the
assertions in the motion for summary judgment "would
derogate the truth-finding functions of the judicial process
by substituting convenience for facts").
a pro se case, the court must view the submissions
by a more lenient standard than that accorded to 'formal
pleadings drafted by lawyers.'" Govan v.
Campbell, 289 F.Supp.2d 289, 295 (N.D.N.Y. 2007)
(quoting Haines v. Kerner, 404 U.S. 519, 520, 92
S.Ct. 594, 30 L.Ed.2d 652 (1972)) (other citations omitted).
The Second Circuit has opined that the court is obligated to
"make reasonable allowances to protect pro se
litigants" from inadvertently forfeiting legal rights
merely because they lack a legal education. Govan v.
Campbell, 289 F.Supp.2d 289, 295 (N.D.N.Y. 2007)
(quoting Traguth v. Zuck, 710 F.2d 90, 95 (2d Cir.
1983)). "However, this does not mean that a pro
se litigant is excused from following the procedural
requirements of summary judgment. See Id. at 295
(citing Showers v. Eastmond, 00 CIV. 3725, 2001 WL
527484, *1 (S.D.N.Y. May 16, 2001)). Specifically, "a
pro se party's 'bald assertion, '