United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Fort Myers Division
OPINION AND ORDER
E. STEELE UNITED STA.TES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter comes before the Court upon the following:
Defendant Director, Florida Civil Commitment Center's
(“Defendant Director's” or
“Defendant's”) motion for summary judgment
(Doc. 1, filed January 9, 2017);
Plaintiff Edward Lind's (“Plaintiff's”)
motion for summary judgment (Doc. 33, filed January 9, 2017);
Defendant Director's amended motion for summary judgment
(Doc. 34, filed January 10, 2017);
Defendant Director's response in opposition to
Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment (Doc. 36, filed
February 15, 2017);
Plaintiff Edward Lind's second motion for summary
judgment, construed as a response in opposition to
Defendant's motion for summary judgment (Doc. 37, filed
February 16, 2017); and
Defendant Director's response in opposition to
Plaintiff's second motion for summary judgment (Doc. 39,
filed March 21, 2017).
reasons given in this Opinion and Order, Defendant
Director's motions for summary judgment are granted.
Plaintiff's motions for summary judgment are denied, and
judgment will be entered in favor of defendant.
Background and Procedural History
an involuntarily civilly committed resident of the Florida
Civil Commitment Center (“FCCC”) in Arcadia,
Florida, initiated this action on January 4, 2016 by
filing a complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against
the Director of the Florida Civil Commitment Center (Doc. 1).
Plaintiff's original complaint is the operative complaint
before the Court.
April 29, 2016, Defendant Director filed a motion to dismiss,
arguing that Plaintiff's complaint was moot because he
(Plaintiff) had received the only relief requested in the
complaint (Doc. 11). In response, Plaintiff agreed that he had
received surgery for his groin hernia, but had not yet
received surgery to correct his abdominal hernia (Doc. 22).
Director filed an answer and affirmative defenses to the
complaint (Doc. 25), and on September 21, 2016, the parties
were directed to conduct discovery (Doc. 26). Thereafter,
both parties filed motions for summary judgment on September
9, 2017 and attached documents in support of their motions
(Doc. 29; Doc. 33). The following day, Defendant Director
filed an amended motion for summary judgment (Doc. 34). The
parties were directed to respond to the motions (Doc. 35).
The parties were cautioned that: (1) failure to respond to a
motion for summary judgment indicates that the motion is
unopposed; (2) all material facts asserted in the motions
would be considered admitted unless controverted by proper
evidentiary materials; and (3) Plaintiff could not rely
solely on the allegations of his pleadings to oppose the
motions (Doc. 35) (citing Griffith v. Wainwright,
772 F.2d 822, 825 (11th Cir. 1985)). Despite the warnings,
Plaintiff did not respond to Defendant Director's motions
for summary judgment. However, the Court will liberally
construe Plaintiff's second motion for summary judgment
as his response to Defendant Director's motions. See
Tannenbaum v. United States, 148 F.3d 1262, 1263 (11th
Cir. 1998) (“Pro se pleadings are held to a
less stringent standard than pleadings drafter by attorneys
and will, therefore, be liberally construed.”).
complaint, Plaintiff alleges that he suffers from one
abdominal and one groin hernia (Doc. 1 at ¶ 4). The
hernias cause him great pain. Id. at ¶ 5. He
has sought surgery from medical professionals at the FCCC,
but they refuse to provide surgery. Id. at
¶¶ 6-7. Plaintiff asserts that the defendant's
deliberate indifference to his medical need violates his
constitutional rights under the Due Process Clause of the
Fourteenth Amendment. Id. at ¶ 8.
seeks only an order from this Court compelling Defendant
Director to provide hernia surgery (Doc. 1 at ¶ 9).
Director's Motion for Summary Judgment
motion for summary judgment, Defendant Director alleges that
Plaintiff has received ample care for his hernias and that
his § 1983 complaint is based merely upon
Plaintiff's disagreement with the treatment provided
(Doc. 34). Defendant asserts that the proper treatment for a
hernia is a “classic” example of a matter for
medical judgment and that “[n]o constitutional
violation exists where an inmate and a prison medical
official merely disagree as to the proper course of medical
treatment.” Id. at 11.
support his motion for summary judgment, Defendant Director
attaches Plaintiff's medical records (Doc. 34-1; Doc.
34-2); an affidavit of Jacques Lamour, M.D. (Doc. 34-3,
“Lamour Aff.”); and an affidavit from Donald
Sawyer (Doc. 34-4, “Sawyer Aff.”).
Plaintiff's construed response to Defendant's motion
for summary judgment, Plaintiff urges that the responses to
the grievances he filed regarding his hernia treatment were
“frivolous” because they merely advised him to
speak with the medical department, which presumably, was not
providing the treatment Plaintiff desired (Doc. 37 at 1).
Plaintiff urges, for the first time in this response, that
nothing has been done about his hemorrhoid problem; that he