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Williams v. Gage

United States District Court, Western District of Washington, Seattle

April 6, 2015

JAMES WILLIAMS, Plaintiff,
v.
BRUCE GAGE, et al., Defendants.

ORDER ON REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

Marsha J. Pechman United States District Judge

The above-entitled Court, having received and reviewed:

1. Report and Recommendation (Dkt. No. 56)

2. Plaintiff’s Objections to Report and Recommendation (Dkt. No. 58)

3. Defendants’ Response to Plaintiff’s Objections to Report and Recommendation (Dkt. No. 59)

all attached declarations and exhibits and relevant portions of the court record, rules as follows:

IT IS ORDERED that the Report and Recommendation is ADOPTED: the Court GRANTS Defendants’ summary judgment motion and DISMISSES Plaintiff’s claims with prejudice.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Plaintiff’s motion for an extension of time is DENIED.

Background

Plaintiff has been housed in the Special Offender Unit at the Monroe Correctional Complex (MCC-SOU) since June 2, 2011. (Dkt. No. 39-1, Exhibit 1, Declaration of Polson, ¶ 4, Attachment A.) He carries a diagnosis of Bipolar I Disorder, severe with psychotic features, a serious psychotic condition. (Dkt. No. 39-2, Exhibit 2, Declaration of Beck, ¶ 10.) Plaintiff’s § 1983 civil rights complaint covers a two-year course of involuntary administration of antipsychotic medication and alleges that the involuntary administration of the drugs is a violation of his rights under the Fourteenth Amendment. (Dkt. No. 9, Second Amended Complaint.)

The Report and Recommendation (Dkt. No. 56; “R&R”) prepared by Magistrate Judge Brian A. Tsuchida of this district lays out in admirably thorough detail both the statutory and regulatory framework within which antipsychotic medications are administered in the Washington prison system (R&R at 2-4) and the history of Involuntary Antipsychotic Hearings (“IAH”) which have resulted in a virtually uninterrupted program of involuntary antipsychotic medication of Plaintiff. (R&R at 4-12.) The Court sees no need to duplicate that narrative in this order.

The R&R concludes by recommending that the summary judgment motion filed by Defendants in this matter be granted and that Plaintiff’s claims be dismissed with prejudice. Plaintiff has filed objections to that Recommendation (and requested an extension of time to submit additional evidence) (Dkt. No. 58), and Defendants have responded to those objections and the request for an extension of time. (Dkt. No. 59.)

Discussion

The seminal case in the area of the involuntary antipsychotic medication of inmates is Washington v. Harper (494 U.S. 210 (1990), which held that inmates have a liberty interest in being free from involuntary administration of antipsychotic drugs as a matter of due process. Id. at 222. The state is, however, permitted to administer such medication to an inmate if the inmate is adjudged to represent a danger to himself or others and the administration of the drugs is in ...


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