United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Texarkana Division
O. Hickey, Chief United States District Judge
14, 2019, the Court entered a Memorandum Opinion and Order
(ECF No. 34) granting in part and denying in part
Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 19).
Specifically, the motion (ECF No. 19) was denied as to
Plaintiff's individual and official capacity claims
against Sheriff Simmons for allegedly violating
Plaintiff's substantive due process rights when Sheriff
Simmons extended Plaintiff's detention without a first
appearance. The Court advised Sheriff Simmons that it might
be appropriate to grant Plaintiff summary judgment on these
claims. Sheriff Simmons was given until May 29, 2019, to file
a response on this issue. (ECF No. 34, p. 15). Plaintiff was
also given until May 29, 2019, to file any further argument
or documentation he wished for the Court to consider.
(Id.). Sheriff Simmons filed a response (ECF No. 35)
contending he that he remains entitled to summary judgment.
(ECF No. 35). Plaintiff has filed objections to the response.
(ECF No. 36). The Court finds this matter is ripe for
a civil rights action filed by Plaintiff pursuant to 42
U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff proceeds pro se and
in forma pauperis. Plaintiff is incarcerated in the
Randall L. Williams Unit of the Arkansas Department of
was booked into the Sevier County Detention Center
(“SCDC”) on April 28, 2016, and charged with
criminal mischief in the first degree, possession of firearms
by certain persons, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon,
and terroristic threatening. (ECF No. 21-2, p. 22). On May 1
and 6, 2016, Plaintiff submitted grievances claiming that he
was placed under arrest without a warrant, without any
“paperwork, ” and without any legal charges. (ECF
No. 21-3, pp. 2-3).
first appearance was held on May 12, 2016. (ECF No. 21-2, p.
23). On June 10, 2016, Plaintiff was transported to the ADC.
(ECF No. 21-2, p. 25).
criminal trial was held on March 14-15, 2018. (ECF No. 1-1,
p. 2). Plaintiff was found guilty of possession of a firearm
by a certain person and sentenced to a term of imprisonment
of 144 months in the ADC. (ECF No. 28-1, pp. 1, 3). This
charge had been severed from the other pending charges.
(Id. at 3). Plaintiff received jail time credit for
the thirty-three days he was incarcerated in the SCDC in
2016. (Id.). At the time judgment was entered on
March 28, 2018, the other charges remained
judgment is appropriate if, after viewing the facts and all
reasonable inferences in the light most favorable to the
nonmoving party, the record “show[s] 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.”
Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp.,
475 U.S. 574, 587 (1986); Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c). “Once a
party moving for summary judgment has made a sufficient
showing, the burden rests with the non-moving party to set
forth specific facts, by affidavit or other evidence, showing
that a genuine issue of material fact exists.”
Nat'l Bank of Comm. v. Dow Chem. Co., 165 F.3d
602, 607 (8th Cir. 1999).
nonmoving party “must do more than simply show that
there is some metaphysical doubt as to the material
facts.” Matsushita, 475 U.S. at 586.
“They must show there is sufficient evidence to support
a jury verdict in their favor.” Nat'l
Bank, 165 F.3d at 607 (citing Anderson v. Liberty
Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 249 (1986)). “A case
founded on speculation or suspicion is insufficient to
survive a motion for summary judgment.” Id.
(citing Metge v. Baehler, 762 F.2d 621, 625 (8th
Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment controls the issue
of a pretrial detainee's right to a prompt appearance in
court after arrest. See Hayes v. Faulkner Cnty., 388
F.3d 669, 673 (8th Cir. 2004). In Hayes, the Court
of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit applied the framework set
forth by the Seventh Circuit in Armstrong v.
Squadrito, 152 F.3d 564 (7th Cir. 1998), in determining
whether an extended detention following an arrest violated
the Due Process Clause. Applying this framework, the
Hayes court considered the following three
questions: (1) whether the Due Process Clause prohibits an
extended detention, without an initial appearance, following
arrest by a valid warrant; (2) whether a defendant's
conduct offends the standards of substantive due process; and
(3) whether the totality of the circumstances shocks the
conscience. Hayes, 388 F.3d at 673.
The Original Summary Judgment Motion
their Summary Judgment Motion and supporting documents (ECF
Nos. 19-21, 30), Defendants presented the following
information regarding the handling of first appearances: (1)
the SCDC had no written policy regarding first appearance
hearings; and (2) according to Jail Administrator Chris
Wolcott, “Former Sheriff Benny Simmons had no personal
involvement in arranging for the Plaintiff's first
appearance hearings on the criminal charges made against him
in Sevier County.” Defendants presented no other
evidence regarding any training that was done with respect to
the timing of first appearances, or any internal safeguards,
or procedures to ensure that the first appearances did in
fact occur, or any steps taken to ensure the detention center
had the authority to continue to detain arrested individuals.
In view of this lack of evidence, the Court concluded that
due to the failure to adopt adequate safeguards or provide
training, it appeared both obvious and likely to result in
the deprivation of constitutional rights. The Court further
concluded that a fifteen-day detention before a first
appearance, in conjunction with the showing Plaintiff had
made, and the grievances he filed, shocked the conscience.
Sheriff Simmons' Supplement
Sheriff Simmons' supplement (ECF No. 35), he presents for
the first time his affidavit describing the training he
provided to Administrator Wolcott and another
affidavit from Administrator Wolcott setting forth
his efforts to obtain an earlier first appearance for
Plaintiff. Sheriff Simmons seeks to excuse his failure to
provide this evidence previously on the grounds that
“counsel thought that the case law-which has never
found a delay of 15 days or less conscience-shocking prior to
the Court's Order in this case-would ...