United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
SHIRLEY PADMORE MENSAH UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
prisoner civil rights case, defendants Lieutenant [Unknown]
Porter and Lieutenant [Unknown] Mitchell move for summary
judgment on the ground that plaintiff failed to properly
exhaust available administrative remedies. Plaintiff has not
responded to the motion, and the time for doing so has
passed. For the following reasons, the Court will grant
defendants' motion and enter judgment in their favor.
56(c) provides that summary judgment shall be entered
"if the pleadings, depositions, answers to
interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the
affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue as to
any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a
judgment as a matter of law." In ruling on a motion for
summary judgment, the court is required to view the facts in
the light most favorable to the non-moving party and must
give that party the benefit of all reasonable inferences to
be drawn from the underlying facts. AgriStor Leasing v.
Farrow, 826 F.2d 732, 734 (8th Cir. 1987). The moving
party bears the burden of showing both the absence of a
genuine issue of material fact and his entitlement to
judgment as a matter of law. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby,
Inc., 477 U.S. 242 (1986); Matsushita Elec. Indus.
Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586-87 (1986);
the moving party has met his burden, the non-moving party may
not rest on the allegations of his pleadings but must set
forth specific facts, by affidavit or other evidence, showing
that a genuine issue of material fact exists. Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(e). Anderson, 477 U.S. at 257; City of Mt.
Pleasant, Iowa v. Associated Elec. Coop., Inc., 838 F.2d
268, 273-74 (8th Cir. 1988). Rule 56(c) "mandates the
entry of summary judgment, after adequate time for discovery
and upon motion, against a party who fails to make a showing
sufficient to establish the existence of an element essential
to that party's case, and on which that party will bear
the burden of proof at trial." Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986).
brings this § 1983 action, alleging that on February 27,
2017 while he was an inmate at the St. Louis County Justice
Center, Lieutenants Porter and Mitchell placed him in
handcuffs and then hit him several times in the face, head,
neck, and back, injuring him. Plaintiff also alleges his
wrists were injured when defendants placed his handcuffs too
tight. The Court has previously dismissed defendant St. Louis
County Justice Center and all claims brought in
defendants' official capacities.
Porter and Mitchell move for summary judgment on
plaintiff's remaining claims against them in their
personal capacities. Defendants state plaintiff did not
exhaust his administrative remedies, and they are entitled to
summary judgment. Plaintiff did not respond to
a prisoner can file suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, he must
exhaust all available administrative remedies. See
42 U.S.C. § 1997e(a). Exhaustion requirements are
determined by the jail or prison where the prisoner is
confined rather than by federal law. See Jones v.
Bock, 549 U.S. 199, 218 (2007); Harmon v.
White, ___ F. App'x ___, 2017 WL 4816701 (8th Cir.
Oct. 25, 2017) (per curiam) (affirming dismissal for
inmate's failure to fully exhaust administrative
remedies); Johnson v. Jones, 340 F.3d 624, 627
(8th Cir. 2003) (an inmate must exhaust all
available administrative remedies before filing suit;
“[i]f exhaustion was not completed at the time of
filing, dismissal is mandatory”).
support of their motion for summary judgment, defendants have
submitted a copy of the St. Louis County Department of
Justice Services Inmate Handbook. Defendants have also
submitted the affidavit of May Stern, Corrections Case
Manager of St. Louis County Department of Justice Services.
Ms. Stern states that all inmates receive a copy of the
Inmate Handbook when they enter the St. Louis County Justice
Center. “Pursuant to policy, custom, and practice,
[plaintiff] was given a copy of the . . . [Inmate] Handbook
for his use.”
fifteen of the Inmate Handbook addresses inmate grievances.
Under the policy of the St. Louis County Justice Center, the
administrative grievance procedure is initiated by filling an
Inmate Grievance within five days of the alleged incident. If
an inmate is dissatisfied with the response to an Inmate
Grievance, the inmate may file a Grievance Appeal within
three days of receiving a response to the Inmate Grievance.
Stern states that her job responsibilities include working
with inmates to address their needs and accepting grievances.
Ms. Stern was plaintiff's Case Manager on February 27 and
28, 2017, when the alleged incident occurred. Ms. Stern
states that she does not recall receiving a grievance from
plaintiff regarding defendants' conduct, and that if she
had received a grievance from plaintiff in February or March,
2017, she would have placed it in Jerry Kramer's mailbox
or handed it to him personally.
support of their motion for summary judgment, defendants also
have attached an affidavit of Gerard (Jerry) Kramer,
plaintiff's Housing Unit Manager between February 14,
2017 and March 26, 2017. One of Mr. Kramer's job
responsibilities is to accept and respond to inmate
grievances. He receives grievances directly from inmates,
from Corrections Case Managers, and through the mail. Mr.
Kramer states that he never received a grievance from
plaintiff about defendants; Corrections Case Manager May
Stern never gave him a grievance from plaintiff about
defendants; and he did not find a grievance in his mailbox
from plaintiff about defendants. Additionally, Mr. Kramer has
access to the computer system where all inmate grievances are
filed. He has checked the computer system, and found no