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Umoja v. Correction Corporation of America

United States District Court, W.D. Tennessee, Eastern Division

August 28, 2019

YAQIN ABDALLAH AMADU UMOJA a/k/a MICHAEL WILLIAMS, Plaintiff,
v.
CORRECTIONS CORPORATION OF AMERICA, ET AL., Defendants.

          ORDER TO MODIFY THE DOCKET, GRANTING DEFENDANTS' MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT, CERTIFYING AN APPEAL WOULD NOT BE TAKEN IN GOOD FAITH AND DENYING LEAVE TO APPEAL IN FORMA PAUPERIS

          JAMES D. TODD UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         Plaintiff Yaqin Abdallah Amadu Umoja a/k/a Michael Williams, filed this pro se civil action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (ECF No. 1.) At the time, Umoja was incarcerated at the Hardeman County Correctional Facility (HCCF) in Whiteville, Tennessee.[1] Umoja alleges he received inadequate medical treatment, in violation of his constitutional rights, during his incarceration at the HCCF. (Id. at PageID 2, 6-9.) The Court granted Umoja's motion to proceed in forma pauperis and assessed the civil filing fee pursuant to the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA), 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(a)-(b). (ECF No. 4.) Thereafter, the Court partially dismissed the complaint and directed that process be issued for the remaining Defendants, Dr. Bernhard Dietz, a physician at the HCCF; HCCF Health Administrator John Borden; and HCCF Nurse Jill Shearon.[2] (ECF No. 12.) Before the Court is Defendant's motion for summary judgment. (ECF No. 37.) Although he received two extensions of time in which to file a response to Defendants' motion, Umoja has failed to do so.

         Summary judgment is appropriate “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). “[T]he burden on the moving party may be discharged by ‘showing'- that is, pointing out to the district court-that there is an absence of evidence to support the nonmoving party's case.” Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 325 (1986). Rule 56(c)(1) provides that “[a] party asserting that a fact cannot be or is genuinely disputed” is required to support that assertion by:

(A) citing to particular parts of materials in the record, including depositions, documents, electronically stored information, affidavits or declarations, stipulations . . ., admissions, interrogatory answers or other materials;[3] 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.

         “If a party fails to properly support an assertion of fact or fails to properly address another party's assertion of fact as required by Rule 56(c)” the district court may:

(1) give an opportunity to properly support or address the fact;
(2) consider the fact undisputed for purposes of the motion;
(3) grant summary judgment if the motion and supporting materials- including the facts considered undisputed-show that the movant is entitled to it; or
(4) issue any other appropriate order.

Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e).

         In Celotex Corp., the Supreme Court explained that Rule 56:

mandates the entry of summary judgment, after adequate time for discovery and upon motion, 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 proof at trial. In such a situation, there can be “no genuine issue as to any material fact, ” since a complete failure of proof concerning an essential element of the nonmoving party's case necessarily renders all other facts immaterial. The moving party is “entitled to judgment as a matter of law” because the nonmoving party has failed to make a sufficient showing on an essential element of [his] case with respect to which [he] has the burden of proof.

477 U.S. at 322-23. However, where the party moving for summary judgment also has the burden of persuasion at trial, the initial burden on summary judgment is higher. Under those circumstances, the moving party must show “that the record contains evidence satisfying the burden of persuasion and that the evidence is so powerful that no reasonable jury would be free to disbelieve ...


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