United States District Court, D. Oregon, Portland Division
OPINION AND ORDER
YIM YOU, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
Bradley Monical (“Monical”), proceeding pro
se and in forma pauperis, has filed a civil
rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Monical is
incarcerated at the Oregon State Penitentiary. He alleges
that defendants, who are various employees of Oregon
Department of Corrections (“ODOC”), violated his
Fourteenth Amendment rights to Due Process and Equal
Protection by imposing disciplinary sanctions following his
escape from Jackson County Jail. He seeks a declaration that
defendants' actions violated his constitutional rights,
correction of the misconduct report that was written upon his
return to ODOC custody, credit for time spent in segregation,
and $100, 000 in damages. Am. Compl. 27.
court has jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§
1331 and 1343(a)(3). All parties have consented to allow a
Magistrate Judge to enter final orders and judgment in this
case in accordance with FRCP 73 and 28 U.S.C. § 636(c).
Defendants have moved for summary judgment. ECF #67. For the
reasons discussed below, defendants' motion for summary
judgment is GRANTED.
was admitted to the custody of ODOC on July 11, 2011. Decl.
of Sam Nagy (“Nagy Decl.”) ¶ 4.
Approximately one month later, he was transported to Jackson
County Jail for court appearances, and on November 11, 2012,
he escaped by leaping from the jail's rooftop exercise
yard onto a nearby tree. Am. Compl. 5; Nagy Decl., Att. 3, at
4. U.S. Marshals, Oregon State Police, and members of the
Jackson County Sheriff's Office unsuccessfully attempted
to apprehend Monical, and he remained at large for nearly one
year. Nagy Decl., Att. 3, at 4. The Multnomah County
Sheriff's Office Warrant Strike Team arrested Monical on
November 13, 2013, and he was returned to Jackson County
returned to ODOC custody on September 28, 2015, and was held
in administrative segregation for 11 days pending the results
of the investigation into his escape. Nagy Decl. ¶ 4. On
October 9, 2015, defendant Inspector Christina Towers
(“Towers”) issued a misconduct report, outlining
the details of the escape and assigning a rule violation of
4.20 Escape I. Id., Att. 3, at 4. Correctional
Captain Jeff Dickinson (“Dickinson”) reviewed the
report, and approved holding Monical in temporary segregation
status pending a disciplinary hearing.
Id. Monical was placed in temporary segregation
status for five days, until his hearing on October 14, 2015.
Id., Att. 3, at 1.
disciplinary hearing, Monical admitted to escaping from the
Jackson County Jail through the rooftop exercise yard.
Id., Att. 3, at 15-16. Defendant Hearings Officer
Sam Nagy (“Nagy”) issued a preliminary
order finding that Monical violated Rule 4.20
Escape I when he left the secure perimeter of Jackson County
Jail without authorization. Id., Att. 3, at 1. Nagy
imposed a sanction of 90 days' disciplinary segregation
with credit for time served, 14 days' loss of privileges
upon release from the disciplinary segregation unit, and a
$100 disciplinary fine. Id., Att. 3, at 1-2, 7. On
October 22, 2015, Monical was transferred to the disciplinary
segregation unit at Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution.
Nagy Decl. ¶ 4. The functional unit manager approved
Nagy's preliminary order on October 28, 2015, and it
became a final order. Id., Att. 3, at
id., Att. 4, at 19.
petitioned for administrative review of the final order on
November 7, 2015.Id., Att. 4, at 6-17. On November
30, 2015, defendant Inspector General Michael Gower
(“Gower”) affirmed the final order, finding there
was substantial compliance with ODOC rules governing
prohibited inmate conduct (OAR 291-105), the violation was
supported by a preponderance of the evidence, and the
sanctions were in accordance with the rules. Id.,
Att. 4, at 1.
is entitled to summary judgment if 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.”
FRCP 56(a). Summary judgment is not proper if material
factual issues exist for trial. Warren v. City of
Carlsbad, 58 F.3d 439, 441 (9th Cir. 1995).
moving party bears the burden of establishing the absence of
a genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). “When judging
the evidence at the summary judgment stage, the district
court is not to make credibility determinations or weigh
conflicting evidence, and is required to draw all inferences
in a light most favorable to the nonmoving party.”
Musick v. Burke, 913 F.2d 1390, 1394 (9th Cir.
1990). Where different ultimate inferences may be drawn,
summary judgment is inappropriate. Sankovich v. Life Ins.
Co. of North America, 638 F.2d 136, 140 (9th Cir. 1981).
deference to the nonmoving party has limits; a party
asserting that a fact cannot be true or is genuinely disputed
must support the assertion with admissible evidence. FRCP
56(c). A nonmoving party cannot defeat summary judgment by
relying on the allegations in the complaint, unsupported
conjecture, or conclusory statements. Hernandez v.
Spacelabs Medical, Inc., 343 F.3d 1107, 1112 (9th Cir.
2003). Thus, where “the record taken as a whole could
not lead a rational trier of fact to find for the non-moving
party, there is no genuine issue for trial.”
Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co., Ltd., v. Zenith Radio
Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587 (1986).
Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. § 1983 “is not itself
a source of substantive rights, but merely provides a method
for vindicating federal rights elsewhere conferred.”
Graham v. Connor, 490 U.S. 386, 393-94 (1989)
(internal citation and quotation marks omitted). Section 1983
liability “arises only upon a showing of personal
participation by the defendant, ” acting under color of
state law, that deprived the plaintiff of a constitutional or
federal statutory right. Taylor v. List, 880 F.2d
1040, 1045 (9th Cir. 1989). “A person
‘subjects' another to the deprivation of a
constitutional right, within the meaning of section 1983, if
he does an affirmative act, participates in another's
affirmative acts, or omits to perform an act which he is
legally required to do that causes the deprivation of which
complaint is made.” Johnson v. Duffy, 588 F.2d
740, 743 (9th Cir. 1978).
courts hold a pro se litigant's pleadings to
“less stringent standards than formal pleadings drafted
by lawyers.” Eldridge v. Block, 832 F.2d 1132,
1137 (9th Cir. 1987); see Erickson v. Pardus, 551
U.S. 89, 93-94 (2007) (per curiam) (a document filed
pro se “is to be liberally construed”; a
plaintiff need only give the defendant fair notice of the
claim and the grounds on which it rests) (citation omitted).
“However, a liberal interpretation of a civil rights
compliant may not supply essential elements of the claim that
were not initially pled.” Ivey v. Board of
Regents, 673 F.2d 266, 268 (9th Cir. 1982). In addition,
pro se pleadings may not receive the benefit of
every conceivable doubt, but only to reasonable factual
inferences in the plaintiff's favor. McKinney v. De
Bord, 507 F.2d 501, 504 (9th Cir. 1974).
contend they are entitled to summary judgment because: (1)
Monical's due-process claims fail as a matter of law; (2)
Nagy provided Monical with all process that was due; (3)
Monical has failed to state an equal protection claim; and
(4) defendants are entitled to qualified immunity from
damages. Mot. Summ. J. 3.