United States District Court, D. Maryland
JOHN V. GOUGH, JR. Plaintiff
CALVERT COUNTY DETENTION CENTER MISTY BELL CAPTAIN KEVIN CROSS ANN UENO PHYSICIAN’S ASSISTANT DOE JOHN DOE 1, Guard JOHN DOE 2, Guard Defendants v.
DEBORAH K. CHASANOW United States District Judge
April 20, 2016, this court denied motions to dismiss filed by
Defendants Cross, Ueno and Bell (ECF Nos. 31, 33 and 35)
subject to renewal as motions for summary judgment. (ECF Nos.
44 and 45). Defendants have filed motions for summary
judgment (ECF Nos. 46, 48 and 51) which are opposed by
Plaintiff John V. Gough, Jr. (ECF Nos. 53, 54 and 55).
Defendants have filed replies. (ECF Nos. 56, 57 and 58). A
hearing is unnecessary for resolution of the case.
See Local Rule 105.6 (D. Md. 2014). For the
following reasons, the dispositive motions shall be
GRANTED and this case closed.
a resident of the District of Columbia, filed this civil
rights action in the Superior Court of the District of
Columbia on October 28, 2014,  seeking money
damages. (ECF No. 1 3, p. 1). His allegations
centered around the treatment he allegedly received during
confinement at the Calvert County Detention Center
("CCDC"). Gough stated, in toto, that he
was subjected to "violation of first amendment rights
(religious persecution), " "inhumane
treatment" and "drug experimentation, " denial
of "proper medication (medical and mental)" and
"attempted murder" as defined by District of
Columbia law. (Id.).
for CCDC promptly removed the case to the United States
District Court for the District of Columbia and remitted the
civil filing fee. (ECF No. 1-2). After providing Gough an
opportunity to amend his complaint (ECF Nos. 7 and 8), the
District of Columbia district court transferred the case here
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a). (ECF No. 20). On October 20,
2015, the court dismissed CCDC and ordered Gough to
supplement his complaint. (ECF No. 23). Gough did so, naming
additional Defendants involved in his alleged mistreatment
and indicating the events outlined in his pleadings occurred
between September 21 and October 21, 2011. (ECF No. 24 at
1-2, ¶ 4; ECF No. 25 at 3-4, ¶ 4). A similar
complaint, Gough v. Calvert County Detention Center, et
al., Civil Action No. DKC-15-3434 (D. Md.), was
consolidated for the purpose of preliminary review and
docketed as a second amended complaint here. (ECF No. 26).
Following the service of process, Defendants Bell, Cross and
Ueno moved to dismiss the complaint as untimely filed. As
noted, these motions were denied without prejudice to permit
resubmission of motions for summary judgment to include
additional materials outside the pleadings and to provide
Gough an additional opportunity to respond.
construed, the complaint sounded in tort (for medical
negligence or malpractice), with additional claims suggesting
violations of civil rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In
his amended complaint, Gough states that Cross and Bell
encouraged him to eat rather than partake in a religious
fast, and placed a "tally sheet" on his door so
that a log could be kept if he decided to eat. He further
notes that he was threatened with transfer to another
facility if he continued to fast and required forced
feeding. ECF No. 8 at 2. As noted in an Order dated
October 20, 2015 (ECF No. 23), these actions do not
constitute religious persecution in violation of the First
Amendment and cannot proceed here.
also stated in his amended complaint that because he decided
to fast, he was placed in a cold room and handcuffed to a
steel bench, where he stayed for two days without a pillow,
blanket or mattress. (ECF No. 8 at p. 2). This claim was
permitted to proceed and Gough was ordered further to
supplement his claim to name the individuals who subjected
him to those conditions, as well as set forth what injury he
incurred as a result of this incident.Gough did so in
his second amended complaint. (ECF No. 26).
specified that the events of which he complained occurred
between September 21, 2011 and October 1, 2011, while he was
detained at CCDC. (ECF No. 25 at p. 4; ECF No. 37 at p. 2).
He states he delayed filing his lawsuit because he thought
the statute of limitations already had expired, and because
injury sustained during an unrelated encounter with law
enforcement officials caused "loss of
memory." (ECF No. 36 at 2). He also reiterates his
allegations against the Defendants and requests additional
money damages in his second opposition response, as
supplemented. (ECF Nos. 53, 54 and 55).
named Defendants move for summary judgment pursuant to
Fed.R.Civ.P. 54.While each offers a plethora of arguments
for dismissal or judgment, each agrees that the complaint,
received in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia
prior to its transfer and removal, was filed outside the
applicable statute of limitations. (ECF No. 46-1 at pp.
10-11; ECF No. 49 at pp. 10-12; ECF No. 51 at pp. 9-12).
filing of a complaint outside the statute of limitations is
an affirmative defense to be pleaded and proved by a
defendant. Here, all Defendants raise the
limitations defense, citing Gough’s November 20, 2015
submission, docketed as a second supplement to the amended
complaint. (ECF No. 31-1 at p. 6; ECF No. 33 at 1, adopting
argument set forth in ECF No. 31-1; ECF No. 35-1 at pp. 3-4
there is no express period of limitations in the Civil Rights
Act, federal courts generally apply the most appropriate
state statute of limitations to a claim filed under 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983. See Wilson v. Garcia,471 U.S. 261
(1985); Burnett v. Grattan, 468 U.S. 42 (1984);
Cox v. Stanton, 529 F.2d 47, 49-50 (4th Cir. 1975).
Maryland's general three-year statute of ...