EADS v. FEDERAL BUREAU OF PRISONS et al
OPINION. Signed by Judge Noel L. Hillman on 2/16/2021. (rss, n.m.)
Case 1:19-cv-18394-NLH-JS Document 55 Filed 02/16/21 Page 1 of 5 PageID: 632
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY
CHRISTOPHER JUSTIN EADS,
No. 19-cv-18394 (NLH) (JS)
FEDERAL BUREAU OF PRISONS, et
Christopher Justin Eads, 10391-028
Federal Correctional Institution
P.O. Box 420
Fairton, NJ 08320
Plaintiff Pro se
Craig Carpenito, United States Attorney
Jane Dattilo, Assistant United States Attorney
United States Attorney's Office
970 Broad Street
Newark, NJ 07102
Attorneys for Defendants
HILLMAN, District Judge
Plaintiff Christopher Justin Eads, a federal prisoner
presently incarcerated in FCI Fairton, New Jersey, is proceeding
with an amended complaint under the Administrative Procedure
Act, 5 U.S.C. § 701 et seq., Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents
of Fed. Bureau of Narcotics, 403 U.S. 388 (1971), and the
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Federal Tort Claims Act.
See ECF No. 11.
The Court screened
the amended complaint and permitted it to proceed on February
ECF No. 12.
Plaintiff filed a motion for a preliminary injunction with
his complaint asking the Court to order the Bureau of Prisons to
provide immediate medical treatment for his broken nose and
ECF No. 19.
ECF No. 3.
The Court denied this
Plaintiff filed a motion for
reconsideration of that order on the grounds that he had been
diagnosed with COVID-19 after the Court’s order and was having
ECF No. 26.
The Court reinstated the
preliminary injunction motion and directed Defendants to respond
to the motion for preliminary injunction.
ECF No. 38.
Defendants filed their response on November 17, 2020.
The Court denied Plaintiff’s motion for a preliminary
injunction on November 30, 2020.
ECF No. 44.
The next day, the
Court received Plaintiff’s motion for additional time to respond
to Defendants’ arguments.
ECF No. 45.
The Court received
Plaintiff’s opposition papers on December 11, 2020.
ECF No. 48.
The Court issued its decision on the motion for preliminary
injunction before it received Plaintiff’s request for more time.
Plaintiff has not formally sought reconsideration of the
decision, but the Court has reviewed Plaintiff’s submissions in
the interests of justice.
After reviewing the papers, the Court
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declines to reopen or reconsider its decision to deny the
preliminary injunction. 1
The motion for an extension of time
will be dismissed as moot.
To obtain preliminary injunctive relief, the moving party
must demonstrate: (1) a reasonable likelihood of success on the
merits; (2) irreparable injury if the requested relief is not
granted; (3) the granting of preliminary injunction will not
result in greater harm to the non-moving party; and (4) the
public interest weighs in favor of granting the injunction.
Reilly v. City of Harrisburg, 858 F.3d 173, 176 (3d Cir. 2017),
as amended (June 26, 2017).
“[A] movant for preliminary equitable relief must meet the
threshold for the first two ‘most critical’ factors: it must
demonstrate that it can win on the merits (which requires a
showing significantly better than negligible but not necessarily
more likely than not) and that it is more likely than not to
suffer irreparable harm in the absence of preliminary relief.”
Id. at 179.
“If these gateway factors are met, a court then
The Court notes for the record that Plaintiff filed a separate
motion for a temporary restraining order to prevent the Bureau
of Prisons from transferring him to a different facility. ECF
No. 50. He filed a request to supplement that motion with
additional documents that raise new allegations about his
medical treatment from December 2020 to February 2021. ECF No.
54. Those motions are under separate consideration by this
Court as this motion concerns Plaintiff’s medical care prior to
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considers the remaining two factors and determines in its sound
discretion if all four factors, taken together, balance in favor
of granting the requested preliminary relief.”
Plaintiff disputes Defendants’ characterization that he has
“recovered” from COVID-19.
ECF No. 48 at 16.
He states that he
continues to feel ill and might be at risk for serious illness
or injury due to his pre-existing conditions.
Id. at 17-18.
asserts he has developed high blood pressure and anemia because
Id. at 29.
He claims to have extreme difficulties
breathing from his mouth “due to COVID related aftereffects on
my breathing capacity.”
Id. at 36.
The last visit for which
the Court had records, November 10, 2020, indicated Plaintiff
had a normal temperature and an oxygen saturation rate of 97
ECF No. 40 at 2; see also ECF No. 48 at 64.
visit, Plaintiff “deni[ed] cough or wheezing.
pain or heart palpitations.”
He denies chest
ECF No. 48 at 63.
Essentially, Plaintiff’s papers set forth a dispute as to
how he felt in the past.
grant an injunction.
This is not enough for the Court to
The Court does not minimalize the effects
of COVID-19, but “a showing of irreparable harm is insufficient
if the harm will occur only in the indefinite future.
the moving party must make a clear showing of immediate
Campbell Soup Co. v. ConAgra, Inc., 977 F.2d
86, 91 (3d Cir. 1992) (internal quotations omitted).
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standard is heightened “where the relief ordered by the
preliminary injunction is mandatory and will alter the status
quo . . . . ”
Bennington Foods LLC v. St. Croix Renaissance,
Grp., LLP, 528 F.3d 176, 179 (3d Cir. 2008).
that Plaintiff may be harmed at some indefinite point in the
future is not enough for this Court to issue a mandatory
Plaintiff has not met his burden of showing he is
in immediate danger of irreparable injury as required by Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure 65.
Plaintiff’s motion for an extension of time will be
dismissed as moot.
After considering Plaintiff’s papers that
were submitted after this Court’s decision, the Court declines
to reconsider or reopen the motion for preliminary injunction.
An appropriate order follows.
Dated: _February 16, 2021
At Camden, New Jersey
__s/ Noel L. Hillman ____
NOEL L. HILLMAN, U.S.D.J.
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