Babb v. Osbourne et al
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER Signed by Chief Judge Joseph H. McKinley, Jr. on 3/12/2018 granting 96 and 98 Defendant's Motions for Summary Judgment cc: Counsel, Plaintiff (Pro se) (JM)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY
CIVIL ACTION NO: 4:16-CV-00029-JHM
RANDALL LEE BABB, SR.
DAVID OSBORNE et al.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court on Defendant Matthew Johnston’s Motion for Summary
Judgment [DN 96] and Motion for Summary Judgment [DN 98] by Defendants Daviess County,
David Osborne, Marty Teasley, Jim Wyatt, Jack Jones, Chris Isbill, Steven Roberts, Joseph
Moore, Katelin Dewitt, and Ken Elschide. Fully briefed, these matters are ripe for decision. For
the following reasons, the Court holds that Defendants’ motions are GRANTED.
Plaintiff Randall Babb Sr. filed this lawsuit while he was incarcerated at the Daviess
County Detention Center (“DCDC”) on March 4, 2016. One week later, he filed another
complaint which was opened as a new action. Babb v. DCDC, 4:16-CV-00040-JHM. However,
upon further review of the second complaint, the Court determined that it should be consolidated
into this action [DN 26]. After an initial screening [DN 31], the Court allowed the following
claims to proceed: Plaintiff’s claim against Daviess County and his individual-capacity claims
against Defendants Marty Teasley, Deputy Dewitt, and Deputy Roberts for the excessive use of
force; Plaintiff’s claims against Daviess County for exposure to black mold and Hepatitis C; his
claim against Daviess County and his individual-capacity claims against Defendants Osborne,
Elschide, and Teasley for malnutrition; and his individual-capacity claim against Defendant
Johnston for deliberate indifference to a serious medical need. The Court allowed Plaintiff to file
an amended complaint to sue Defendants Lt./Major Elshy, Lt. Jack Jones, Sgt. Moore, and Sgt.
Wyatt in their individual capacities for use of excessive force.
Defendants now seek summary judgment on all claims asserted against them, claiming
that the Plaintiff failed to exhaust his administrative remedies. Plaintiff has not responded to the
II. APPLICABLE LAW
The Prison Litigation Reform Act (“PLRA”) states, “No action shall be brought with
respect to prison conditions under [42 U.S.C. § 1983], or any other Federal law, by a prisoner
confined in any jail, prison, or other correctional facility until such administrative remedies as
are available are exhausted.” 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(a). This statute “applies only to prisoners, and a
plaintiff’s status as a ‘prisoner’ is to be determined as of the time he brought the lawsuit.” Dixon
v. Page, 291 F.3d 485, 489 (7th Cir. 2002). The Supreme Court has explained, “the PLRA’s
exhaustion requirement applies to all inmate suits about prison life, whether they involve general
circumstances or particular episodes, and whether they allege excessive force or some other
wrong.” Porter v. Nussle, 534 U.S. 516, 532 (2002). In a case such as this one where “the
defendants in prisoner civil rights litigation move for summary judgment on administrative
exhaustion grounds, they must prove that no reasonable jury could find that the plaintiff
exhausted his administrative remedies.” Mattox v. Edelman, 851 F.3d 583, 590 (6th Cir. 2017).
Plaintiff’s claims are subject to the exhaustion requirement of the PLRA. Nowhere in the
record does Plaintiff allege that he made efforts to resolve his issues with DCDC through the
administrative processes available at the jail. In an attachment to Joint Defendants’ Motion for
Summary Judgment, a copy of the Inmate Handbook [DN 97-14] demonstrates the DCDC
system for inmates to file grievances in the event that they are unhappy with prison conditions.
According to Defendants, a search of DCDC records determined that Plaintiff did not utilize this
system to file any grievances with regard to any of the allegations made in this lawsuit. Plaintiff
has offered no response.
No reasonable jury could find that Plaintiff met the exhaustion requirements under the
PLRA prior to filing this lawsuit. Because he did not exhaust his administrative remedies, claims
against Defendants brought pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 must be dismissed.
For the reasons set forth above, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Defendants’ motions
for summary judgment are GRANTED.
March 12, 2018
cc: counsel of record
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