United States District Court, D. Maryland
William Minton, Plaintiff, Pro se, Essex, MD.
For Warden Kathleen Green, Captain D. Matthews, CS01 D. Childers, Defendants: Stephanie Judith Lane Weber, LEAD ATTORNEY, State of Maryland, Office of the Attorney General, Baltimore, MD.
James K. Bredar, United States District Judge.
On May 9, 2014, William Minton filed this 42 U.S.C. § 1983 suit while incarcerated
at the Eastern Correctional Institution (" ECI" ). He seeks injunctive relief, along with nominal and punitive damages. ECF Nos. 1 & 13.
Minton claims that he ordered three out-of-print " old stock" books, originally published in the 1980s from a bookstore in Baltimore County, Maryland. He claims that in April of 2014, during the dispensing of inmate property, he was informed by defendant Childers that he was not allowed to receive those books because they were deemed " used" and he was given the option of either having the books destroyed or sending them home at his expense. ECF No. 1. Minton asserts that Childers agreed to place the books on a thirty-day hold pending his administrative remedy procedure (" ARP" ) grievance. Id.
Defendants have filed a motion to dismiss or, in the alternative, motion for summary judgment, which has been construed as a motion for summary judgment. ECF No. 19. Minton has filed an opposition response (ECF No. 25), a supplemental declaration (ECF No. 28), and a motion for summary judgment. ECF No. 31. The complaint and responsive pleadings are ready for review. Oral hearing is deemed unnecessary. See Local Rule 105(6) (D. Md. 2014). For reasons to follow, defendants' dispositive motion, construed as a motion for summary judgment, shall be GRANTED and Minton's motion for summary judgment shall be DENIED.
II. LEGAL STANDARD OF REVIEW
A " court shall grant summary judgment if the movant shows that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 91 L.Ed.2d 265 (1986) (citing predecessor to current Rule 56(a)). The burden is on the moving party to demonstrate the absence of any genuine dispute of material fact. Adickes v. S.H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 157, 90 S.Ct. 1598, 26 L.Ed.2d 142 (1970). If sufficient evidence exists for a reasonable jury to render a verdict in favor of the party opposing the motion, then a genuine dispute of material fact is presented and summary judgment should be denied. See Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248, 106 S.Ct. 2505, 91 L.Ed.2d 202 (1986). However, the " mere existence of a scintilla of evidence in support of the plaintiff's position" is insufficient to defeat a defendant's motion for summary judgment. Id. at 252. The facts themselves, and the inferences to be drawn from the underlying facts, must be viewed in the light most favorable to the opposing party, Scott v. Harris, 550 U.S. 372, 378, 127 S.Ct. 1769, 167 L.Ed.2d 686 (2007); Iko v. Shreve, 535 F.3d 225, 230 (4th Cir. 2008), who may not rest upon the mere allegations or denials of his pleading but instead must, by affidavit or other evidentiary showing, set out specific facts showing a genuine dispute for trial, Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(1). Supporting and opposing affidavits are to be made on personal knowledge, contain such facts as would be admissible in evidence, and show affirmatively the competence of the affiant to testify to the matters stated in the affidavit. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c)(4).