Deaton v. Smith et al
ORDER ADOPTING IN PART AND DECLINING TO ADOPT IN PART 28 PARTIAL RECOMMENDED DISPOSITION; granting in part and denying in part 13 motion to dismiss; and referring this action to Magistrate Judge Beth Deere for disposition or recommended disposition, as appropriate, of all pretrial proceedings. Signed by Judge J. Leon Holmes on 02/03/2015. (rhm)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
PINE BLUFF DIVISION
NO. 5:14CV00230 JLH/BD
JIM SMITH, et al.
On September 24, 2014, United States Magistrate Judge Beth Deere issued a partial
recommended disposition in which she recommended that the motion to dismiss filed by the
defendants be granted in part and denied in part. Judge Deere recommended that the motion to
dismiss be granted with respect to Christopher Deaton’s claims for money damages against the
defendants in their official capacities because those claims are barred by sovereign immunity.
Document #28 at 3. She also recommended that the Court dismiss Deaton’s claims to the extent that
they seek to institute criminal actions. Id. at 3-4. Those portions of the recommended disposition
are adopted. Deaton’s claims for money damages against the defendants in their official capacities
are dismissed because those claims are barred by sovereign immunity. To the extent that Deaton
is attempting to institute criminal actions, those claims are dismissed.
In a portion of the recommended disposition, Judge Deere recommended that Deaton’s
claims relating to the ADC grooming policy, as well as the enforcement of that policy, should be
dismissed in part because the ADC grooming policy had not been held unconstitutional. Id. at 6.
That policy has now been held unconstitutional. Holt v. Hobbs, 135 S. Ct. 853 (2015). Therefore,
the Court declines to adopt that portion of the recommended disposition.
Judge Deere also recommended that Deaton be permitted to proceed on retaliation claims
that were not addressed by the defendants in their motion. Id. at 7. The defendants have objected
to that portion of Judge Deere’s recommended disposition, noting that they addressed Deaton’s
retaliation claims. In view of the fact that a portion of Deaton’s claims will be permitted to proceed
and therefore will be before Judge Deere again, the Court will leave those retaliation claims to be
addressed, if necessary, in subsequent motions and a subsequent recommended disposition by Judge
Deere. Likewise, Judge Deere recommended that Deaton’s deliberate indifference claims against
Smith and Harris should be allowed to proceed in light of the fact that portions of his other claims
will be allowed to proceed. Id. at 8. That portion of the recommended disposition is adopted.
For the reasons stated, the defendants’ motion to dismiss is granted in part and denied in part.
Document #13. Christopher Deaton’s claims for money damages against the defendants in their
official capacities are dismissed, as are the claims that seek to initiate criminal actions. In all other
respects, Deaton’s claims will be permitted to proceed. Thus, the Court adopts Judge Deere’s
recommended disposition in part and declines to adopt it in part. Document #28.
This action is again referred to Magistrate Judge Beth Deere for disposition or recommended
disposition, as appropriate, of all pretrial proceedings.
IT IS SO ORDERED this 3rd day of February, 2015.
J. LEON HOLMES
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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