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Daniels v. Schnurr

United States District Court, D. Kansas

August 23, 2019

DAN SCHNURR, et al., Defendants.



         This matter is before the Court on three motions filed by the defendants: 1) a Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim (ECF No. 24) filed by Defendant Jason (lnu); 2) a Motion to Dismiss, or in the Alternative, Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 31) filed by Defendants Burris, Rodgers, and Schnurr; and 3) a Motion to Stay Discovery (ECF No. 33) filed by Defendants Burris, Rodgers, and Schnurr. Plaintiff has not filed a response to any of these motions, and the time to do so has long expired.[1] For the reasons described herein, both motions to dismiss are granted and the motion to stay discovery is denied as moot.

         Summary of Complaint

         Mr. Daniels's complaint (ECF No. 1) alleges he was stabbed multiple times by an unrestrained inmate (identified by the defendants as Verl Baker, assigned as a porter to the segregation unit) while he was handcuffed and in the sick call room of the Super Max segregation unit at Hutchison Correctional Facility (HCF) on August 28, 2017. Plaintiff was being examined by Defendant Jason Friesen when Inmate Baker entered the room with a homemade knife and attacked Plaintiff. Plaintiff claims Defendant Rogers did nothing while he was being stabbed repeatedly. He asserts the policies of the facility were directly involved because Defendants should have known Super Max inmates should not be allowed to “mingle” with any unrestrained inmates. He claims the defendants failed to protect him from the assault, violating his rights under the Eighth Amendment.

         Plaintiff seeks compensatory damages of $1, 500, 000, punitive damages of $2, 500, 000, and exemplary damages of $1, 000, 000.

         Motion to Dismiss (ECF No. 24)

         In his Motion to Dismiss and Memorandum in Support, Defendant Jason (lnu) (identified as Jason Friesen, LPN) argues he should be dismissed from the lawsuit because Plaintiff fails to state a claim against him, pointing out the only allegation regarding Defendant Friesen in the complaint is that he sprang into action to protect Plaintiff when he was attacked by Inmate Baker.

         Motion to Dismiss (ECF No. 31)

         Defendants Burris, Schnurr, and Rogers make several arguments in their motion to dismiss. First, they argue that Defendants Burris and Schnurr should be dismissed because the complaint fails to allege facts showing they personally participated in the alleged constitutional violation. Second, these defendants argue they are entitled to Eleventh Amendment immunity. Finally, they argue that Defendant Rogers is entitled to qualified immunity because his actions in allegedly failing to prevent an unforeseen attack on Plaintiff by another inmate did not violate Plaintiff's constitutional rights.

         Legal Standards Rule 12(b)(6)

         “To survive a motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b)(6), a complaint must contain ‘enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'” Schrock v. Wyeth, Inc., 727 F.3d 1273, 1280 (10th Cir. 2013) (quoting Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). “A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009). When applying this standard, a court must accept as true all well-pleaded factual allegations and then ask whether those facts state a plausible claim for relief. See Id. at 679. Viewing the complaint in this manner, the Court must decide whether the plaintiff's allegations give rise to more than speculative possibilities. Id. “[W]here the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to infer more than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has alleged-but it has not ‘show[n]'-‘that the pleader is entitled to relief.'” Id. (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2)).

         Summary Judgment

         Because the Court has considered the material attached to Defendants' memorandum in support, in addition to the Martinez report filed in this case, in evaluating Plaintiff's claims, it decides the motion under the request for summary judgment contained therein. See Casanova v. Ulibarri, 595 F.3d 1120, 1125 (10th Cir. 2010) (district court's dismissal under Rule 12(b)(6) of a prisoner's complaint filed pro se characterized as “irregular” where court had not limited its review to the complaint).

         Summary judgment is appropriate if the pleadings and other materials before the Court show no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c); accord Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 247 (1986). A factual dispute is “material” only if it “might affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law.” Liberty Lobby, 477 U.S. at 248. The Court views all evidence and draws all reasonable inferences in the ...

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