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Bell v. Fischer

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle

May 11, 2018

WARREN E. BELL, Plaintiff,
v.
JEANETTE FISCHER, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT SCORE'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT

          RICARDO S. MARTINEZ, CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         This matter comes before the Court on Defendant SCORE Jail's (“SCORE”) Motion for Summary Judgment. Dkt. #22. Defendant seeks dismissal of Plaintiff's claims against it, asserting that his claim lacks any legal or factual basis. Id. Plaintiff essentially responds that Defendant is lying. Dkts. #25 and #26. For the reasons set forth below, the Court disagrees with Plaintiff, and GRANTS Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment.

         II. BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff initially filed this action on December 5, 2017, in King County Superior Court. Dkt. #1-1. In his Complaint, Plaintiff alleges that he was falsely arrested on May 29, 2017, and booked into the Snohomish County Jail, but then immediately taken to Swedish Hospital to address his medical concerns. Dkt. #1-1 at ¶ ¶ 1.1, 4.1 and 4.2. He further alleges that he was returned to the Snohomish County jail, but was transferred on May 31, 2017, to SCORE. Dkt. #1-1 at ¶ ¶ 1.2 and 4.3. He alleges that SCORE medical staff then involuntarily placed him in administrative segregation with no explanation. Id. at ¶ ¶ 1.3 and 4.4. He further alleges that he spent three days in administrative segregation, he requested an explanation twice by kite as to why he was in administrative segregation, all he received in return was a notice of inmate move to restricted housing, and he never received a due process hearing. Id. at ¶ 4.4. He was then released from SCORE on June 2, 2017. Id. at ¶ ¶ 1.5 and 4.6.

         The record in this case reveals the following. Plaintiff was booked into SCORE Jail on May 31, 2017, at approximately 1:00 p.m. Dkt. #23 at ¶ 3. He was released less than 48 hours later, on June 2, 2017, at 12:15 p.m. Id. On May 31st, Plaintiff was initially housed in the general population in cell S3 Mezzanine 13, at approximately 2:46 p.m. Id. About one hour later, at 3:50 p.m., he was moved to the Medical Unit, “M 10.” Id. According to Defendant, if Plaintiff had been placed in administrative segregation, his cell would have been N1 or S7. Id.

         SCORE's Custody Manual allows the jail to move inmates to “Restricted Housing, ” which includes administrative segregation, disciplinary detention, and Medical/Mental Health Housing. Id. at ¶ 5. The “ad-seg” housing is for those awaiting the outcome of a disciplinary infraction, and those who have a history of misconduct that requires long term, restricted housing. According to Defendant, Plaintiff was in neither situation, nor had he been found culpable of a disciplinary code section that would have placed him in “disciplinary detention.” Id.

         Plaintiff had been incarcerated three times previously, in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Id. at ¶ 11. In November 2012, he was sentenced to 184 days at SCORE, during which time he had been housed in the Medical Unit. Id. Accordingly, Defendant asserts that Plaintiff was aware of what the Medical Unit looked like. Id.

         Defendants removed this action to this Court on January 3, 2018. Dkt. #1. Plaintiff filed a motion for remand, which was denied. Dkts. #10 and #18. The instant motion followed.

         III. DISCUSSION

         A. Legal Standard on Summary Judgment

         Summary judgment is appropriate where “the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 247 (1986). In ruling on summary judgment, a court does not weigh evidence to determine the truth of the matter, but “only determine[s] whether there is a genuine issue for trial.” Crane v. Conoco, Inc., 41 F.3d 547, 549 (9th Cir. 1994) (citing Federal Deposit Ins. Corp. v. O'Melveny & Meyers, 969 F.2d 744, 747 (9th Cir. 1992)). Material facts are those which might affect the outcome of the suit under governing law. Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248.

         The Court must draw all reasonable inferences in favor of the non-moving party. See O'Melveny & Meyers, 969 F.2d at 747, rev'd on other grounds, 512 U.S. 79 (1994). However, the nonmoving party must make a “sufficient showing on an essential element of her case with respect to which she has the burden of proof” to survive summary judgment. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). Further, “[t]he mere existence of a scintilla of evidence in support of the plaintiff's position will be insufficient; there must be evidence on which the jury could reasonably find for the plaintiff.” Anderson, 477 U.S. at 251.

         B. Plaintiff's ...


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