United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
EDWARD M. HAMPTON, Plaintiff,
DICK BROWN, Superintendent, et al., Defendants.
M. HAMPTON Electronically Registered Counsel
ENTRY DISCUSSING MOTIONS FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT AND
DIRECTING ENTRY OF FINAL JUDGMENT
William T. Lawrence, Judge
Edward Hampton, who was at all times relevant to this action
an inmate at Wabash Valley Correctional Facility
(“Wabash Valley”), brings this civil rights
action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging violations
of his Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment rights. The defendants
are Dick Brown, Superintendent of Wabash Valley; Bruce
Lemmon, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Correction
(“IDOC”); and Kevin Hunter, a Unit Manager at
Wabash Valley. Mr. Hampton's claims are predicated on his
reassignment from general population to the Restricted
Movement Unit without a hearing. He maintains that the
conditions of the Restricted Movement Unit, and the lack of
process preceding his placement there, violate his
the Court are the parties' cross-motions for summary
judgment. The defendants responded to the plaintiff's
motion for summary judgment in conjunction with the filing of
their motion, but the plaintiff did not respond to their
motion or otherwise reply. For the reasons explained in this
Entry, the defendants are entitled to summary judgment on all
of Mr. Hampton's claims.
Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment Standard
motion for summary judgment asks the Court to find that a
trial is unnecessary because there is no genuine dispute as
to any material fact and, instead, the movant is entitled to
judgment as a matter of law. See Fed. R. Civ. P.
56(a). In deciding a motion for summary judgment, the Court
need only consider disputed facts that are material to the
decision. A disputed fact is material if it might affect the
outcome of the suit under the governing law. Hampton v.
Ford Motor Co., 561 F.3d 709, 713 (7th Cir. 2009). In
other words, while there may be facts that are in dispute,
summary judgment is appropriate if those facts are not
outcome determinative. Harper v. Vigilant Ins. Co.,
433 F.3d 521, 525 (7th Cir. 2005). Fact disputes that are
irrelevant to the legal question will not be considered.
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248
summary judgment, a party must show the Court what evidence
it has that would convince a trier of fact to accept its
version of the events. Johnson v. Cambridge Indus.,
325 F.3d 892, 901 (7th Cir. 2003). The moving party is
entitled to summary judgment if no reasonable fact-finder
could return a verdict for the non-moving party. Nelson
v. Miller, 570 F.3d 868, 875 (7th Cir. 2009). The Court
views the record in the light most favorable to the
non-moving party and draws all reasonable inferences in that
party's favor. Darst v. Interstate Brands Corp.,
512 F.3d 903, 907 (7th Cir. 2008). It cannot weigh evidence
or make credibility determinations on summary judgment
because those tasks are left to the fact-finder.
O'Leary v. Accretive Health, Inc., 657 F.3d 625,
630 (7th Cir. 2011).
existence of cross-motions for summary judgment does not,
however, imply that there are no genuine issues of material
fact.” R.J. Corman Derailment Servs., LLC v.
Int'l Union of Operating Engineers, 335 F.3d 643,
647 (7th Cir. 2003). Specifically, “[p]arties have
different burdens of proof with respect to particular facts;
different legal theories will have an effect on which facts
are material; and the process of taking the facts in the
light most favorable to the non-movant, first for one side
and then for the other, may highlight the point that neither
side has enough to prevail without a trial.”
Id. at 648.
the parties contest certain facts, all of the material facts
are undisputed. At all times relevant to this action Mr.
Hampton was an inmate incarcerated at Wabash Valley. In
January 2015, officials at Wabash Valley converted one unit
at the facility from a typical general population unit into a
Restricted Movement Unit (“RMU”). Although the
RMU imposes more restrictions on inmates than general
population, it is considered to be a variety of general
population instead of a segregation unit.
an administrative or disciplinary segregation unit at Wabash
Valley where offenders eat alone in their cells, offenders in
the RMU are permitted access to a common room for meals three
times a day where they can eat with twenty-two other inmates.
Also unlike segregation units, inmates in the RMU have
cellmates. They can leave their cells upon request for a
variety of reasons, such as access to medical facilities,
meetings with counselors, and one-on-one religious services.
They also have access to visitation, mail, and telephone
services, one hour of recreation time per day, and access to
law library materials by request in lieu of access to the law
library itself. Placement in the RMU alone does not cause an
inmate to lose earned credit time or otherwise increase the
duration of an inmate's sentence.
at Wabash Valley, including Superintendent Richard Brown,
determined that converting a housing unit into the RMU would
increase the efficiency, safety, and smooth operation of the
facility. For example, maintaining the RMU could serve as a
location to temporarily place inmates whose conduct required
an excessive amount of attention from correctional staff. But
other inmates could also be placed in the RMU based simply on
facility need if no general population spaces were available.
select which inmates would be housed in the newly created
RMU, Wabash Valley officials looked for inmates within
general population to determine who merited placement there.
Defendant Kevin Hunter is a Unit Team Manager at WVCF, and as
such, asked his staff to make recommendations regarding which
inmates would be suitable for the more restricted
environment, especially by considering those inmates who had
a history of conduct issues. Mr. Hampton was recommended for
placement in the RMU to Mr. Hunter by his staff based on his
history of conduct violations-specifically, Mr. Hampton had
forty-two conduct violations at the time he was placed in the
RMU, including four of the most severe type. Superintendent
Brown approved the recommendation to place Mr. Hampton in the
RMU. The placement was considered administrative rather than
disciplinary because it had not been the direct result of a
Hampton was moved to the RMU on January 16, 2015. A review
board conducted periodic review of inmates' placement in
the RMU. During his second placement review in May 2015, all
five staff members on the review board recommended that he be
transitioned back to general population. Mr. Hampton ...