WROMAS v. TUTEN et al
ORDER ACCEPTING IN PART REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION - The 105 report and recommendation is accepted in part as it relates to Plaintiff's motion and adopted as this Court's opinion as to Plaintiffs motion only. As for De fendant's motion, this Court rejects the report and recommendation. Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment, ECF No. 85 , is DENIED. Defendants' motion for summary judgment, ECF No 92 , is DENIED. This matter is remanded to the Magistrate Judge for further consideration. Signed by CHIEF JUDGE MARK E WALKER on 9/11/2020. (cle)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF FLORIDA
Case No. 4:18cv209-MW/MAF
R. A. TUTEN,
A. ANDERSON, and
ORDER ACCEPTING IN PART REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
This Court has considered, without hearing, the Magistrate Judge's Report and
Recommendation, ECF No. 105, and has also reviewed de novo Plaintiff’s
objections to the report and recommendation, ECF No. 108. Accordingly,
IT IS ORDERED:
The report and recommendation is accepted in part as it relates to Plaintiff’s
motion and adopted as this Court’s opinion as to Plaintiff’s motion only.
As for Defendant’s motion, this Court rejects the report and recommendation.
Plaintiff presented evidence that the use of force by Defendant Tuten was without
penological justification. He complained of pain but presented no evidence of an
identifiable injury or specific harm caused to a pre-existing condition. Even so, an
Eighth Amendment claim may be sustained when force is used that offends
“contemporary standards of decency,” regardless of whether “significant injury is
evident.” Wilkins v. Gaddy, 559 U.S. 34, 37, 130 S. Ct. 1175, 175 L. Ed. 2d 995
(2010)). Furthermore, “[n]ominal damages are appropriate if a plaintiff establishes
a violation of a fundamental constitutional right, even if he cannot prove actual
injury sufficient to entitle him to compensatory damages.” Hughes v. Lott, 350 F.3d
1157, 1162 (11th Cir. 2003). The Eleventh Circuit has recently clarified that when
a pro se litigant requests compensatory damages, that should be viewed as also
including nominal damages. Furman v. Warden, No. 19-14134 (11th Cir. Sept. 11,
2020). Here, a jury must determine if Plaintiff’s Eighth Amendment claim was
harmful enough to violate contemporary standards of decency and, in so doing,
determine whether Plaintiff is entitled to monetary damages, either compensatory or
Plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment, ECF No. 85, is DENIED.
Defendants’ motion for summary judgment, ECF No 92, is DENIED. This matter
is remanded to the Magistrate Judge for further consideration.
SO ORDERED on September 11, 2020.
s/Mark E. Walker
Chief United States District Judge
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