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Holland v. McLaughlin

United States District Court, M.D. Georgia, Macon Division

March 5, 2019

Warden GREGORY MCLAUGHLIN, et al., Defendants.



         Pending before the Court is Defendants Fye, McLaughlin, and Robinson's motion for summary judgment (ECF No. 45) and Plaintiff's motions seeking appointed counsel (ECF No. 47), leave to amend his complaint (ECF No. 52), and an order to compel Defendants to provide information (ECF Nos. 58, 60). For the reasons explained below, Plaintiff's motions are denied and it is recommended that Defendants' motion for summary judgment be granted.


         Plaintiff's claims concern his medical treatment while imprisoned. He alleges multiple instances of inadequate medical care by Defendants, including the following:

1) Defendant Robinson being unresponsive to Plaintiff's need for dental care since January 2016, which led to Plaintiff experiencing a great deal of pain, “bad acid reflux, ” and difficulty eating.
2) Dr. Fye refusing to treat Plaintiff with Harvoni, a new Hepatitis-C drug that has a 96% cure rate and no side-effects.
3) Warden Gregory McLaughlin denying multiple grievances which Plaintiff filed concerning his medical treatment, refusing to help Plaintiff despite being aware of his need for dental and medical treatment, and allowing Plaintiff to be held in a dangerous cell and permitting “violation of emergency transport” rules.

         Suppl. Compl. 3, 7, 11, ECF No. 8. Plaintiff named the following Defendants in his original complaint: 1) Dr. Fye; 2) Dr. Robinson; 3) Gregory McLaughlin; 4) the Georgia Department of Corrections (“GDC”); 5) unknown medical and dental providers for Macon State Prison; 6) Phoebe Sumter; and 7) Dr. Barbara Dalrymple. Following preliminary screening, only Plaintiff's deliberate indifference claims against Defendants Robinson, Fye, and McLaughlin remain. Order adopting R. & R. 3, ECF No. 23. On April 26, 2018, Plaintiff was granted permission to amend his complaint with information clarifying the identity of previously unnamed Defendants. Order, 1-2, ECF No. 34. However, Plaintiff then sent a letter to the Court explaining that the information concerning newly identified Defendants was intended for a different suit he was a party to. Letter 1, ECF No. 41. On May 7, 2018, the Court construed Plaintiff's letter as a notice of voluntary dismissal against the newly identified Defendants and dismissed them. Text-Only Order, ECF No. 42. Defendants moved for summary judgment on June 1, 2018, arguing that there is no genuine issue of material fact and that they are entitled to qualified immunity from all of Plaintiff's claims. Br. in Supp. of Mot. for Summ. J. 1-2, ECF No. 45-1.


         I. Summary Judgment

         A. Standard

         Summary judgment may be granted only “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 determining whether a genuine dispute of material fact exists to defeat a motion for summary judgment, the evidence is viewed in the light most favorable to the party opposing summary judgment, drawing all justifiable inferences in the opposing party's favor. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986). A fact is material if it is relevant or necessary to the outcome of the suit. Id. at 248. A factual dispute is genuine if the evidence would allow a reasonable jury to return a verdict for the nonmoving party. Id.

         “The party moving for summary judgment bears the initial responsibility of informing the district court of the basis for its motion [] and identifying those portions of the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, which it believes demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of material fact.” Jones v. UPS Ground Freight, 683 F.3d 1283, 1292 (11th Cir. 2012) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted) (alterations in original). “The burden then shifts to the non-moving party to rebut that showing by producing affidavits or other relevant and admissible evidence beyond the pleadings.” Id. (internal quotation marks and citations omitted). “The non-moving party does not satisfy its burden if the rebuttal evidence is merely colorable, or is not significantly probative of a disputed fact.” Id. (internal quotation marks and citations omitted).

         Under Local Rule 56, a non-movant must respond “to each of the movant's numbered material facts[, and] [a]ll material facts contained in the moving party's statement which are not specifically controverted by specific citation to the record shall be deemed to have been admitted, unless otherwise inappropriate.” M.D. Ga. L. R. ...

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