United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Northern Division
RICHARD W. LESLEY, Plaintiff,
MS. JANE DOE TEAGUE, et al., Defendants.
OPINION MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
EDWARD AUTREY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the Court on Defendant Stoner's Motion
for Summary Judgment [Doc. No. 86]; Defendants Hunter, Mills
and Mosley's Motion for Summary Judgment, [Doc. No. 105];
and Thompson and Osterman's Motion for Summary Judgment,
[Doc. No. 109]. Plaintiff opposes the Motions and has filed a
Motion to Deny Summary Judgment, [Doc. No. 123]. For the
reasons set forth below, the Motions for Summary Judgment are
granted. Plaintiff's Motion to Deny Summary Judgment is
an inmate in the Missouri Correctional System, brought this
Section 1983 action against Defendants claiming that they
violated his constitutional rights during an incident wherein
Plaintiff was sprayed with pepper spray. The following facts
are taken from Defendants' statement of un-controverted
facts, Plaintiff's statement of facts, and exhibits in
was an inmate incarcerated at Moberly Correctional Center
(“MCC”) in Moberly, Missouri. Defendant Jeffry
Ostermann was a Correctional Officer I at MCC. Defendant
Nelson Thompson was a Correctional Officer III at MCC.
December 18, 2014, Plaintiff arrived at MCC on transfer from
Ozark Correctional Center. During the processing of the
Plaintiff into MCC, Plaintiff became very “aggravated,
” “upset, ” and “mad.”
Plaintiff became very upset, aggressive, and combative with
Correctional Officer Mary Teague in response to her questions
regarding his property. Plaintiff yelled obscenities at
multiple officers and threw food creating a disturbance and
threatening the safety and security of the institution In
response to the disturbance created by the Plaintiff,
Lieutenant Curtis Still and Defendant Ostermann placed
Plaintiff in restraints so that he could be escorted to
Housing Unit 2 of MCC, administrative segregation. Defendant
Ostermann took control of Plaintiff's left arm and Lt.
Still took control of Plaintiff's right arm as they began
the escort. As they were leaving the gym area, Plaintiff
began to resist the escort and refused to continue walking.
Ostermann and Lt. Still were then forced to tighten their
grips on Plaintiff's arms in order to maintain control of
a potentially violent offender and to ensure the escort
Lt. Still warned the Plaintiff that pepper spray might be
used if he continued to refuse orders to proceed, the
Plaintiff continued to walk and no pepper spray was used at
that point. During the escort, the Plaintiff orally
threatened physical violence to Defendant Ostermann by
stating “Ostermann, you mother f*****, I will kick you
in the nuts you mother f*****. I get these f****** cuffs off,
I'm kicking you in the mother f****** nuts.”
the Plaintiff's violent outbursts, multiple instances of
noncompliance by the Plaintiff, and Plaintiff's threats
of physical violence towards Defendant Ostermann, the
Officers maintained control over the non-compliant offender
by keeping a tight grip on his arms.
the escort reached Housing Unit 2, Defendant Thompson then
took over the escort from Defendant Ostermann, and Defendant
Ostermann had no further involvement with the Plaintiff and
did not witness anything further.
Thompson and the fellow officers were informed of the
Plaintiff's violent and threatening behavior. Defendant
Thompson and Lt. Still then completed the escort by placing
the Plaintiff in cell 2D-554. Plaintiff did not request any
medical assistance during the escort.
medical injuries to Plaintiff's hands, wrists, arms, or
shoulders were noted in Plaintiff's medical records and
Plaintiff did not file any medical services requests for any
injuries to such areas.
did not file an IRR, grievance or grievance appeal concerning
his excessive use of force claim against Defendant Ostermann.
standard policy at MCC for any offender who is placed in a
cell in administrative segregation to undergo a strip search
to ensure the offender is not concealing any item that is
considered contraband that might pose a risk to the safety or
security of the inmates, correctional officers or any other
individuals at MCC. Plaintiff had been in administrative
segregation prior to December 18, 2014 and was familiar with
the process requiring him to undergo a strip search after
placement in administrative segregation. Plaintiff Lesley
understood that in order to perform a strip search, an inmate
must remove all of his clothing.
inside the cell, pursuant to policy that is applied to every
offender who is placed in administrative segregation,
Plaintiff was given direct orders to submit to a strip search
and remove all of his clothing.
began to comply with orders to remove his clothing so that
the strip search could take place, but then became
argumentative and refused to continue. Defendant Thompson
then repeatedly warned Plaintiff that if he continued to
refuse orders to remove his clothing so that the strip search
could be completed, he would be pepper sprayed in order to
to any application of pepper spray, Defendant Thompson
obtained oral approval from Nurse Audrey Ford at MCC that
pepper spray was authorized for use on Plaintiff.
the Plaintiff continued to refuse repeated orders to remove
his clothing, a burst of pepper spray was applied to his
allowing the pepper spray to take effect, Defendant Thompson
again ordered the Plaintiff to remove the rest of his
clothing so that the strip search could be completed.
Plaintiff again began to comply with the orders and removed
more of his clothing, but then again refused to completely
remove the remainder of his clothing. Plaintiff was again
warned that he would be pepper sprayed if he continued to
refuse to submit to a full strip search; and, after he did
refuse, another burst of pepper spray was applied to his
facial area by Defendant Thompson.
the second burst of pepper spray was allowed to take effect,
Plaintiff removed the remainder of his clothing and allowed
the full strip search to be conducted. Immediately upon the
conclusion of the strip search, Plaintiff was examined and
treated by medical staff.
outer sides of Plaintiff Lesley's eyes were washed by a
medical nurse, but Plaintiff was otherwise non-compliant
during the medical assessment and refused any other
Plaintiff had access to a sink with running water in his
Two days later on December 20, 2014, Plaintiff was moved to a
housed in administrative segregation are offered showers on a
set schedule unless medical staff notifies custody staff that
a medical need exists for an offender to take a shower
outside of the normal schedule. Medical staff did not provide
any order for the Plaintiff to be given a shower outside of
the normal schedule set for offenders in administrative
was offered a shower on December 21, 2014, but he refused the
opportunity to shower.
burns, welts or blisters were ever observed on Plaintiff.
Defendant Stoner assessed Plaintiff at approximately 2:00 PM
on December 18, 2014 after pepper agent had been applied by
custody staff. During the December 18, 2014 appointment,
Plaintiff complained of burning eyes, but denied any
difficulty breathing or other injuries. During the December
18, 2014 appointment, Plaintiff refused to open his eyes so
that Defendant Stoner could perform further inspection of his
complaints. She was able to wash the outer side of
Plaintiff's eyes with eye wash, but he refused any other
treatment or assessment at that time. Plaintiff admits that
his eyes were rinsed by Defendant Stoner. Plaintiff was
non-compliant during the December 18, 2014 encounter.
Defendant Stoner noted that Plaintiff should flush his eyes
with water or saline, and consider a shower with soap and
cool water if the exposure area was large; though, Plaintiff
did not make any request for a shower during the encounter,
nor did he make any statements or requests regarding cleaning
Stoner determined that Plaintiff was not in acute distress
during the December 18, 2014 encounter. Defendant Stoner
instructed Plaintiff to notify medical immediately if he
developed any symptoms or shortness of breath. Defendant
Stoner does not recall Plaintiff ever asking her for
treatment for burns, welts or blisters, including any cream
or ointment. She never observed any burns, welts or blisters
on Plaintiff's body. She does not recall Plaintiff
requesting a shower or to have his cell cleaned following the
use of pepper agent, or any other time.
scheduling of showers in segregation and the cleaning of
cells is not handled by medical staff as these are custody
issues. Defendant Stoner never observed any need for
Plaintiff's cell to be cleaned or that he required a