United States District Court, E.D. Tennessee
A. VARLAN, CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
a pro se prisoner's civil rights complaint filed pursuant
to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Before the Court are
Defendant's motion for summary judgment filed [Doc. 27]
and his motion to amend/revise trial date [Doc. 33].
Plaintiff has not filed a response to Defendant's motion
for summary judgment and the time for doing so has passed.
E.D. Tenn. LR 7.1(a)(2). As such, Plaintiff has waived any
opposition to this dispositive motion. Elmore v.
Evans, 449 F.Supp. 2, 3 (E.D. Tenn. 1976),
aff'd 577 F.2d 740 (6th Cir. 1978); E.D. Tenn.
LR 7.2. For the following reasons, the motion for summary
judgment [Doc. 27] will be GRANTED and this action will be
DISMISSED. Accordingly, Defendant's motion to
amend/revise trial date [Doc. 33] will be DENIED as moot.
complaint, Plaintiff alleges that on October 3, 2014, he was
having chest pains and pressed his call light [Doc. 2 p. 9].
Plaintiff states that when Defendant responded, Plaintiff
told Defendant that he was having chest pains and requested
that Defendant call medical, which Defendant stated he would
do [Id. at 9, 13]. Plaintiff further asserts that,
after thirty minutes passed, Plaintiff again pressed the call
light, at which time Defendant advised Plaintiff that he
needed to sign up for sick call if he was having an emergency
[Id.]. Plaintiff states that several hours later,
after shift change, an unidentified officer noticed that
Plaintiff was having medical symptoms of a heart attack and
obtained medical care for Plaintiff, at which time Plaintiff
was taken to a medical center and diagnosed with congestive
heart failure [Id.]. Plaintiff alleges that his
chest pains establish the objective element of a deliberate
indifference claim and that Defendant's failure to get
Plaintiff medical treatment for those chest pains establishes
the subjective element of such a claim [Id. at
affidavit filed in support of his motion for summary
judgment, Defendant testifies that during the relevant
incident on October 3, 2014, Plaintiff requested that
Defendant send him to the medication pass line (“med
pass”) to obtain an antacid because he was having
stomach pain and heartburn [Doc. 32 p. 1]. Defendant states
that he denied this request because antacids are not
available at evening med pass [Id.]. Plaintiff had
voluntarily declined to go to med pass earlier in the evening
[Id.]. After Defendant denied Plaintiff's
request, Plaintiff told Defendant “F*** it, I'll
get third shift to do it” [Id.]. Defendant
further testifies that Plaintiff did not request emergency
sick call and did not appear to be in serious medical
distress [Id. at 2]. Also, in the excerpt of
Plaintiff's deposition and Plaintiff's certified
medical records filed with Defendant's motion for summary
judgment, Defendant set forth evidence that, when Plaintiff
was evaluated by the medical center after the incident at
issue, Plaintiff's labs and EKG were normal and it was
determined that Plaintiff had not had a heart attack, but
rather was diagnosed with atypical chest pains [Doc. 30 p. 4;
Doc. 31 pp. 7, 11].
SUMMARY JUDGMENT STANDARD
56(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that
“[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). In ruling on a motion for
summary judgment, the court must draw all reasonable
inferences in favor of the nonmoving party. McLean v.
988011 Ontario Ltd., 224 F.3d 797, 800 (6th Cir. 2000).
“Summary judgment is proper if the evidence, taken in
the light most favorable to the nonmoving party, shows that
there are no genuine issues of material fact and that the
moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of
law.” Hartman v. Great Seneca Fin. Corp., 569
F.3d 606, 611 (6th Cir. 2009) (citation omitted). The moving
party has the burden of conclusively showing the lack of any
genuine issue of material fact. Smith v. Hudson, 600
F.2d 60, 63 (6th Cir. 1979).
judgment is an integral tool for securing the “just,
speedy[, ] and inexpensive determination of every
action.” Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S.
317, 327 (1986). The moving party is entitled to judgment as
a matter of law “against a party who fails to make a
showing sufficient to establish the existence of an element
essential to that party's case, and on which that party
will bear the burden of truth at trial.” Id.
district court cannot grant summary judgment in favor of a
movant simply because the adverse party has not responded,
but rather the court is required to, at a minimum, examine
the motion to ensure that the movant has met its initial
burden. Stough v. Mayville Cmty. Sch., 138 F.3d 612,
614 (6th Cir. 1998). In doing so, the court “must not
overlook the possibility of evidentiary misstatements
presented by the moving party.” Guarino v.
Brookfield Twp. Trs., 980 F.2d 399, 407 (6th Cir. 1992).
The court must “intelligently and carefully review the
legitimacy of  an unresponded-to motion, even as it
refrains from actively pursuing advocacy or inventing the
riposte for a silent party.” Id. In
the absence of a response, however, the Court will not
“sua sponte comb the record from the partisan
perspective of an advocate for the non-moving party.”
Id. at 410. If the court determines that the
unrebutted evidence set forth by the moving party supports a
conclusion that there is no genuine issue of material fact,
the court will determine that the moving party has carried
its burden, and “judgment shall be rendered
forthwith.” Id. (alteration omitted).
presents evidence that he did not perceive a substantial risk
to Plaintiff during the incident at issue in Plaintiff's
complaint and that Plaintiff did not suffer any detriment
from the delay in medical treatment. Plaintiff has not
disputed this evidence or set forth evidence that he suffered
any detriment due to the delay in receiving medical care.
Accordingly, Defendant is entitled to judgment as a matter of
law on Plaintiff's claim for denial of medical care.
prison authority's deliberate indifference to an
inmate's serious medical needs violates the Eighth
Amendment. Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 104-05
(1976). Prison medical personnel or officials may be
deliberately indifferent to a prisoner's serious medical
needs “in their response to a prisoner's
needs” or by “interfer[ing] with treatment once
prescribed.” Id. To prevail on a claim
alleging Eighth Amendment violations in the prisoner medical
context, a plaintiff must show that acts or omissions of an
individual operating under the color of state law were
“sufficiently harmful to evidence deliberate
indifference to serious medical needs.” Id. at
106. Thus, under the Estelle standard, “[a]
constitutional claim for denial of medical care has [both]
objective and subjective components.” Blackmore v.
Kalamazoo Cnty., 390 F.3d 890, 895 (6th Cir. 2004).
objective component of a claim for denial of medical care
requires proof the inmate is suffering from a sufficiently
serious medical need such that “he [was] incarcerated
under conditions posing a substantial risk of serious
harm.” Brown v. Bargery, 207 F.3d 863, 867
(6th Cir. 2000) (quoting Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S.
825, 834 (1994)). To be sufficiently serious, the medical
need must be either (1) obvious to a layperson or (2)
supported by medical evidence, like a physician's
diagnosis. Farmer, 511 U.S. at 834 (citing
Wilson v. Seiter, 501 U.S. 294, 297-98 (1991));
Aswegan v. Henry, 49 F.3d 461, 464 (8th Cir. 1995).
Further, “[a]n inmate who complains that delay in
medical treatment rose to a constitutional violation must
place verifying medical evidence in the record to establish
the detrimental effect of the delay in medical treatment to
succeed.” Napier v. Madison Cty., 238 F.3d
739, 742 (6th Cir. 2001) (quoting Hill v. Dekalb
Reg'l Youth Det. Ctr., 40 F.3d 1176, 1188 (11th Cir.
subjective component of a claim for denial of medical care
requires proof that the prison official acted with deliberate
indifference. Carter v. City of Detroit, 408 F.3d
305, 312 (6th Cir. 2005), abrogated on other grounds by
Pearson v. Callahan, 555 U.S. 223 (2009). Deliberate
indifference requires a mental state amounting to criminal
recklessness, and mere negligence is therefore insufficient.
Santiago v. Ringle, 734 F.3d 585, 591 (6th Cir.
2013) (citing Farmer, 511 U.S. at 834, 839-40). To
meet this subjective standard, a plaintiff must establish
that the defendant: (1) “perceived the facts from which
to infer substantial risk to the prisoner, ” ...