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Smith v. Page

United States District Court, E.D. Arkansas, Northern Division

January 18, 2017

JOSHUA ALLEN SMITH PLAINTIFF
v.
JOE PAGE, AUNDREA WEEKLY, VERNON ROBERTSON, and BILLY COWELL DEFENDANTS

          FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATION

         INSTRUCTIONS

         The following proposed Findings and Recommendation have been sent to United States District Judge J. Leon Holmes. You may file written objections to all or part of this Recommendation. If you do so, those objections must: (1) specifically explain the factual and/or legal basis for your objection, and (2) be received by the Clerk of this Court within fourteen (14) days of this Recommendation. By not objecting, you may waive the right to appeal questions of fact.

         FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATION

         INTRODUCTION.

         The defendants who remain in this case, Joe Page (“Page”), Aundrea Weekly (“Weekly”), and Vernon Robertson (“Robertson”), have filed the pending motion for summary judgment. See Document 66.[1] For the reasons that follow, the undersigned recommends that the motion be granted, the claims against them be dismissed with prejudice, the complaint be dismissed, and judgment be entered for all of the defendants.

         PLEADINGS.

         Plaintiff Joshua Allen Smith (“Smith”) began this case by filing a complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 1983 and joining Page, Weekly, and Robertson.[2] Smith alleged that he was never properly fitted with footwear while incarcerated at the Arkansas Department of Correction's Grimes Unit (“Grimes Unit”). Instead, he was forced to walk barefoot or with boots or shower shoes so small they “cut, blistered, damaged, or ... [scarred] [his] feet.” See Document 2 at CM/ECF 4. Smith alleged that the defendants were aware of his need for footwear but chose to disregard the need.

         The defendants eventually filed the pending motion for summary judgment. In the motion, they maintained that Smith had failed to meet his burden of proving deliberate indifference to a serious medical need and, as a result, they are shielded from liability by qualified immunity.

         Smith was notified of his right to file a response to the defendants' motion for summary judgment. Although Smith obtained an extension of time for filing a response, he filed nothing, and the time for doing so has now passed.

         FACTS.

         Page, Weekly, and Robertson accompanied their motion for summary judgment with a statement of material facts as required by Local Rule 56.1(a). See Document 67. Smith filed nothing in response. Because he did not controvert the facts contained in the statement, those facts are deemed admitted. See Local Rule 56.1(c). The defendants' statement, and the other pleadings and exhibits in the record, establish that the material facts are not in dispute. Those facts are as follows:

         1. Beginning in August of 2014, Smith was housed at the Grimes Unit where Page, Weekly, and Robertson were employed. See Document 2 at CM/ECF 1-2, Document 41 at CM/ECF 1, Document 67 at CM/ECF 1.

         2. Smith has exceptionally large feet and testified during his deposition that he wears size 18 EEEE footwear. See Document 66, Exhibit A at CM/ECF 8.

         3. When he arrived at the Grimes Unit, he had no footwear but was only wearing socks on his feet. See Document 66, Exhibit A at CM/ECF 6-7.

         4. He was given a pair of size 16 boots and was told that efforts would be undertaken to obtain other footwear for him. ...


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