United States District Court, D. Nevada
ORDER MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
RICHARD F. BOULWARE, II UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
the Court is the Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment
(ECF No. 27). For the reasons discussed below, the motion is
granted in part and denied in part.
Plaintiff filed an Application to Proceed in Forma
Pauperis on April 11, 2016. ECF No. 1. Judge Leen issued
a screening order on November 1, 2016, which allowed the
Complaint to proceed on the following claims only: Count I
against Barth for denial of access to the grievance process,
retaliation, and due process-property claims; Count I against
Groover for the due process-disciplinary segregation claim;
and Count II against Nash, Howell, and Stroud for the
supervisory liability claim only. The screening order gave
the Plaintiff 30 days to file an amended complaint. ECF No.
7. On December 14, 2016, Judge Leen entered an order noting
that as the Plaintiff had not filed an amended complaint, the
case would proceed on only those claims previously
identified. ECF No. 10. An inmate mediation conference was
held on February 24, 2017, and a settlement was not reached.
ECF No. 13. Defendants filed an Answer on May 16, 2017. ECF
No. 18. Plaintiff filed a Response to the Answer on June 6,
2017. ECF No. 20. Attorney Travis N. Barrick appeared on
behalf of the Plaintiff on September 13, 2017. ECF No. 21.
Plaintiff filed a Suggestion of Death as to Defendant Stroud
on September 13, 2017. ECF No. 22. Judge Leen entered a
scheduling order on September 21, 2017. ECF No. 23. Discovery
was due by January 4, 2018 and Motions were due by February
5, 2018. Id. Defendants filed the instant Motion for
Summary Judgment on February 5, 2018. ECF No. 27. Plaintiff
responded on March 5, 2018. ECF No. 30. Defendants replied on
March 19, 2018. ECF No. 31.
Motion for Summary Judgment
judgment is appropriate when the pleadings, depositions,
answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together
with the affidavits, if any, show “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); accord Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S.
317, 322 (1986). When considering the propriety of summary
judgment, the court views all facts and draws all inferences
in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party.
Gonzalez v. City of Anaheim, 747 F.3d 789, 793
(9th Cir. 2014). If the movant has carried its
burden, the non-moving party “must do more than simply
show that there is some metaphysical doubt as to the material
facts . . . . Where the record taken as a whole could not
lead a rational trier of fact to find for the nonmoving
party, there is no genuine issue for trial.” Scott
v. Harris, 550 U.S. 372, 380 (2007) (alteration in
original) (internal quotation marks omitted).
on the record, the Court finds that the following facts to be
Saul Farvela was an inmate at HDSP housed in 1B41, a
segregation unit. He was classified as a member of the Sureno
gang by NDOC's Correction Emergency Response Team
(C.E.R.T). On September 30, 2015, Defendant Barth conducted a
random cell search of Farvela's cell. Barth confiscated
legal books that were the property of other inmates. Farvela
did not have a written letter authorizing that he was being
assisted by another inmate in a legal matter. As a result of
Farvela's cell search, Farvela was issued and served with
a notice of charges related to gang activities, unauthorized
trading/bartering, unauthorized use of equipment or mail, and
possession of a tattoo device. On November 1, 2015, a
disciplinary hearing was conducted by Defendant Groover.
Farvela was found guilty of gang activities, misuse of the
prison mail system, and possession of another inmate's
MP3 player without authorization. Farvela was sanctioned with
540 days of disciplinary segregation and forfeiture of 180
days of his good time credits. Defendant Nash denied the
Plaintiff's second-level grievance regarding the false
charges filed by Defendant Barth and lack of evidence at his
parties dispute the following material facts.
Defendant Barth recovered other contraband from the cell
search, including: one homemade tattoo needle, one MP3 player
belonging to inmate John Groccia, one white cardboard, and
letters indicating Sureno Gang activity. Whether Defendant
Bath refused to give the Plaintiff a grievance form and
fabricated charges against him in retaliation for requesting
a form. Whether contraband that was confiscated from
Farvela's cell was presented as evidence at the November
1, 2015 disciplinary hearing. Whether Farvela made
inculpatory interview statements that were introduced in the