United States District Court, E.D. Arkansas, Pine Bluff Division
Procedure for Filing Objections
Recommended Disposition (“Recommendation”) has
been sent to Judge James M. Moody Jr. Any party may file
written objections to this Recommendation. Objections must be
specific and must include the factual or legal basis for the
objection. To be considered, objections must be received in
the office of the Court Clerk within 14 days of this
objections are filed, Judge Moody can adopt this
Recommendation without independently reviewing the record. By
not objecting, parties may waive any right to appeal
questions of fact.
Scott, an Arkansas Department of Correction
(“ADC”) inmate, filed this lawsuit without the
help of a lawyer under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (Docket entry
#2) He claims that Defendants Simpson-Williams and Mothershed
retaliated against him, and that Defendants Gibson, Shipman,
Carroll, Simpson-Williams, and Mothershed failed to protect
him from an attack by an inmate porter.
have now moved to dismiss Mr. Scott's claims against
them. (#14) Mr. Scott has responded to the motion (#17), and
he has filed a number of motions that remain pending in this
case (#5, #16, #18).
deciding whether Mr. Scott has stated a federal claim for
relief, the Court must determine whether he has pleaded facts
with enough specificity “to raise a right to relief
above the speculative level.” Bell Atlantic Corp.
v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (citations
omitted). A complaint cannot simply “[leave] open the
possibility that a plaintiff might later establish some
‘set of undisclosed facts' to support
recovery.” Id. at 561 (citation omitted).
Rather, the facts set forth in the complaint must be
sufficient to “nudge [the] claims across the line
from conceivable to plausible.” Id. at 547.
officials have a clearly established duty to protect
prisoners from violence at the hands of other prisoners.
Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 833 (1994). In
order to state a claim for this constitutional violation, Mr.
Scott must allege facts that, if true, show that his
continued interaction with the inmate who attacked him
created a substantial risk of serious harm. He must also
plead facts showing that Defendants actually knew of, or were
deliberately indifferent to, the risk Mr. Scott faced, yet
disregarded that risk. Pagels v. Morrison, 335 F.3d
736, 740 (8th Cir. 2003); Jackson v. Everett, 140
F.3d 1149, 1151 (8th Cir. 1998).
Scott alleges that, on March 14, 2018, he was housed in
cellblock 1 of the Varner Supermax Unit behind a solid door
with a trap door for access to food trays and other objects.
Sometime prior to March 14th, he and an inmate-porter
“had words.” (#2 at p.3) Mr. Scott explains that,
during the confrontation, he had threatened to
“dash” the inmate-porter.  (Id.)
Scott states that, on the date of the incident giving rise to
this lawsuit, the inmate-porter assaulted him with a
“squeegee.” While Mr. Scott's hands were
extended through the trap door to his cell, the inmate-porter
allegedly struck his hands and wrists repeatedly, then stuck
the squeegee through the trap door, bruising Mr. Scott's
Scott seeks to hold the ADC employees named as Defendants
responsible for the squeegee attack. Mr. Scott does not
allege that the Defendants were aware that the porter-inmate
posed a threat to him prior to the attack. If Defendants were
not aware of the risk, ...