United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Texarkana Division
CHARLES SAMUEL JOHNSON, JR. PLAINTIFF
CORPORAL TEFT, OFFICER RODRIGUEZ, COPORAL HENSLEY, SERGEANT MOON, and CORPORAL GRIFFIE All of Miller County Detention Center DEFENDANTS
MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND
JAMES R. MARSCHEWSKI, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
a civil rights action provisionally filed pursuant to 42
U.S.C. § 1983. Pursuant to the provisions of 28 U.S.C.
§ 636(b)(1) and (3)(2011), the Honorable Susan O.
Hickey, United States District Judge, referred this case to
the undersigned for the purpose of making a Report and
Recommendation. Currently before the Court is the dismissal
of this case pursuant to a settlement agreement.
filed his Complaint on November 11, 2016. (ECF No. 1).
Plaintiff alleges that his constitutional rights were
violated while he was incarcerated in the Miller County
Detention Center. Plaintiff alleges that on August 11, 2016,
Defendants Teft, Rodriguez, and Moon failed to protect him
from an attack by his cellmate after Plaintiff had informed
them that he was in danger from that cellmate. (Id.
at 4-8). Plaintiff further alleges that Defendants Hensley,
Teft, Rodriguez, and Griffie used excessive force against him
on August 30, 2016. (Id. at 9-11).
April 4, 2018, Plaintiff filed a Motion to Withdraw his
excessive force claim. (ECF No. 45). This Motion was granted
on April 18, 2018, dismissing Plaintiff's excessive force
claim without prejudice. (ECF No. 54).
mandatory Settlement Conference was held on May 10, 2018,
with the undersigned presiding. (ECF No. 56). The sole
remaining claim was Plaintiff's failure to protect claim
arising on August 11, 2016. The conference began at 10:00
a.m. in Fort Smith. The Plaintiff initially offered to settle
the claim for an opening sum of money. That offer was
rejected by the Defendants and a counter offer of a sum of
money was made. The negotiations continued back and forth for
an hour and four minutes until the Plaintiff and Defendant
reached a settlement agreement concerning this claim for the
sum of $2000.00.
conclusion of the Settlement Conference, both the Plaintiff
and the Defendant acknowledged to the undersigned that they
understood and agreed to the settlement. By agreeing to the
settlement payment, Plaintiff agreed to dismiss the failure
to protect claim against the Defendants.
subsequently refused to sign the release documents sent to
him, instead filing two motions with the Court. (ECF Nos. 61,
62). In these documents, Plaintiff appeared to state that he
had agreed to settle the case, not dismiss the case. (ECF No.
62). He further stated any fines should not be subtracted
from the settlement amount. (ECF No. 61). Plaintiff's
Motions were denied on July 17, 2018. (ECF No. 63). In the
Order, the Court noted that while there was some discussion
about the Plaintiff's existing fines during the
conference, those fines were not considered in the final
settlement amount and the Plaintiff's entire claim was
settled for $2000.00.
undersigned reviewed the proposed released documents and
asked Defendants to revise the documents to address
Plaintiff's concerns. On July 17, 2018, the Honorable
Susan O. Hickey entered an Order and Judgment closing the
case but retaining jurisdiction in the case in the event the
settlement was not completed, and further litigation was
necessary. (ECF No. 64). On August 6, 2018, Plaintiff filed a
Notice of Address change indicating that he was no longer
incarcerated. (ECF No. 65).
August 13, 2018, Defendants filed a Motion to Enforce
Judgment, noting they had revised the release documents, but
Plaintiff refused to sign them. They further state Plaintiff
had not stated any basis under Fed.R.Civ.P. 60 for relief
from the Order and Judgment. (ECF No. 66). On August 16,
2018, Defendants filed a Motion for Order to Deposit
Settlement Funds into the Registry of the Court. (ECF No.
69). After reviewing the attached release documents for both
motions, the undersigned further revised the release
documents to address Plaintiff's concerns. This revision
was approved by Defendants and sent to Plaintiff for review.
Plaintiff was directed to respond to the Court regarding
these revisions no later than October 15, 2018. (ECF No. 73).
Plaintiff has failed to do so and has provided no explanation
for his failure. It has come to the attention of the
undersigned that Plaintiff has filed another case in this
District,  re-alleging his failure to protect claim,
as well as alleging other claims concerning his incarceration
in the Miller County Detention Center. A Motion to Dismiss
regarding the failure to protect claim is currently pending
in that case.
October 25, 2018, the undersigned entered an Order granting
Defendants Motion to Deposit Settlement Funds with the
Registry of the Court. This Order releases Defendants from
liability with regard to Plaintiff's failure to protect
claim in this case. (ECF No. 74).
I recommend that Plaintiff's failure to protect claim in
this case be DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE. I further recommend
that Plaintiff be advised that he may petition the Court for
disbursement of the settlement funds.
parties have fourteen days from receipt of the Report and
Recommendation in which to file written objections pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1). The failure to file timely
objections may result in waiver of the right to appeal
questions of fact. The parties are reminded that objections
must be both timely and specific to trigger de novo review by
the district court.