United States District Court, E.D. Arkansas, Western Division
CHRISTOPHER W. SANDERSON ADC #131483 PLAINTIFF
STEVE LOPEZ, et al. DEFENDANTS
FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATION
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.
Christopher W. Sanderson, filed a pro se complaint
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, while he was incarcerated
at the Lonoke County Detention Center. Doc. No. 2.
Sanderson's complaint included multiple claims, and he
was ordered to file an amended complaint providing additional
information. Doc. No. 3. Sanderson subsequently filed a
letter which was treated as the amended complaint.
See Doc. No. 6. This Court subsequently recommended
that Sanderson be required to amend his complaint to provide
more information regarding his black mold claim against
Defendant Steve Lopez, and that the remainder of
Sanderson's claims be dismissed without prejudice for
failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted.
Id. The Court's recommendation was approved
(Doc. No. 7), and Sanderson subsequently filed an amended
complaint regarding his black mold claim (Doc. No. 8).
filed a motion for summary judgment, a brief in support, and
a statement of facts claiming that Sanderson had not
exhausted claims against him before he filed this lawsuit
(Doc. Nos. 17-19). Sanderson did not file a response to
Lopez's motion. Because Sanderson failed to controvert
the facts set forth in Lopez's statement of undisputed
facts, Doc. No. 19, those facts are deemed admitted.
See Local Rule 56.1(c). Lopez's statement of
facts, and the other pleadings and exhibits in the record,
establish that the material facts are not in dispute and that
Lopez is entitled to summary judgment as a matter of law.
Rule 56 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, summary
judgment is proper if “the movant shows that there is
no genuine dispute as to any material fact and that the
moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of
law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Celotex v. Catrett,
477 U.S. 317, 321 (1986). When ruling on a motion for summary
judgment, the court must view the evidence in a light most
favorable to the nonmoving party. Naucke v. City of Park
Hills, 284 F.3d 923, 927 (8th Cir. 2002). The nonmoving
party may not rely on allegations or denials, but must
demonstrate the existence of specific facts that create a
genuine issue for trial. Mann v. Yarnell, 497 F.3d
822, 825 (8th Cir. 2007). The nonmoving party's
allegations must be supported by sufficient probative
evidence that would permit a finding in his favor on more
than mere speculation, conjecture, or fantasy. Id.
(citations omitted). An assertion that a fact cannot be
disputed or is genuinely disputed must be supported by
materials in the record such as “depositions,
documents, electronically stored information, affidavits or
declarations, stipulations (including those made for purposes
of the motion only), admissions, interrogatory answers, or
other materials . . .”. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(1)(A). A
party may also show that a fact is disputed or undisputed by
“showing that the materials cited do not establish the
absence or presence of a genuine dispute, or that an adverse
party cannot produce admissible evidence to support the
fact.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(1)(B). A dispute is genuine
if the evidence is such that it could cause a reasonable jury
to return a verdict for either party; a fact is material if
its resolution affects the outcome of the case. Othman v.
City of Country Club Hills, 671 F.3d 672, 675 (8th Cir.
2012). Disputes that are not genuine or that are about facts
that are not material will not preclude summary judgment.
Sitzes v. City of West Memphis, Ark., 606 F.3d 461,
465 (8th Cir. 2010).
Lopez is the Lonoke County Detention Center (“detention
center”) assistant jail administrator. Lopez
Affidavit, Doc. No. 19-1 at 2.
Sanderson was booked into the detention center on or about
February 8, 2017. Id.
Sanderson filed this lawsuit on March 21, 2017, alleging that
he was injured due to his exposure to black mold at the
detention center. Doc. 2 at 4.
detention center had a grievance procedure in place in 2017
that allowed inmates to submit complaints, questions and
problems about the detention center to detention center
staff. Doc. No. 19-1 at 3; Grievance Procedure, Doc.
January 9, 2017, Sanderson signed a document that stated:
“I have received a copy of my inmate rules and rights.
I understand what is and is not expected of me while visiting