United States District Court, E.D. Virginia, Richmond Division
CHAPPELL L. AMES, Plaintiff,
ROBIN SIDI, Defendant.
E. PAYNE SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT
L. Ames, Sr., a Virginia inmate proceeding pro se
and in forma pauperis, filed this 42 U.S.C. §
1983 action. The matter is before the Court on the
Motion for Summary Judgment filed by Robin Sidi,
Ames has not responded. For the reasons set forth below, the
Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 46) will be granted.
STANDARD FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
judgment must be rendered "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). The party seeking summary judgment bears
the responsibility to inform the court of the basis for the
motion, and to identify the parts of the record which
demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of material fact.
See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323
(1986). "[W]here the nonmoving party will bear the
burden of proof at trial on a dispositive issue, a summary
judgment motion may properly be made in reliance solely on
the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and
admissions on file." Id. at 324 (internal
quotation marks omitted). When the motion is properly
supported, the nonmoving party must go beyond the pleadings
and, by citing affidavits or "'depositions, answers
to interrogatories, and admissions on file,' designate
'specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for
trial.'" Id. (quoting former Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(c) and 56(e) (1986)).
reviewing a summary judgment motion, the court "must
draw all justifiable inferences in favor of the nonmoving
party." United States v. Carolina Transformer
Co., 978 F.2d 832, 835 (4th Cir. 1992) (citing
Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S.
242, 255 (1986)). However, a mere scintilla of evidence will
not preclude summary judgment. Anderson, 477 U.S. at
251 (citing Improvement Co. v. Munson, 81 U.S. (14
Wall.) 442, 448 (1871)). "[T]here is a preliminary
question for the judge, not whether there is literally no
evidence, but whether there is any upon which a jury could
properly proceed to find a verdict for the party . . . upon
whom the onus of proof is imposed.'"
Id. (quoting Munson, 81 U.S. at 448).
Additionally, "'Rule 56 does not impose upon the
district court a duty to sift through the record in search of
evidence to support a party's opposition to summary
judgment.'" Forsyth v. Barr, 19 F.3d 1527,
1537 (5th Cir. 1994) (quoting Skotak v. Tenneco
Resins, Inc., 953 F.2d 909, 915 n.7 (5th Cir.
1992)); see Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c) (3) ("The court
need consider only the cited materials . . . .").
support of her Motion for Summary Judgment, Nurse Sidi
submitted her declaration ("Sidi Decl.," ECF No.
47-1), and Ames's medical records ("Medical
Records," ECF No. 47-2). Although Ames did not respond
to the Motion for Summary Judgment, his Amended Complaint
appears to be verified. (ECF No. 22-2, at 19.) Accordingly,
the following facts are established for the Motion for
Summary Judgment. The Court draws all permissible inferences
in favor of Ames.
PERTINENT, UNDISPUTED FACTS
2014, Nurse Sidi worked as a charge nurse at Sussex II State
Prison ("SUSP"). (Sidi Decl. ¶ 4.) SUSP is a
"high security prison that houses approximately 1500
offenders." (Id.) One of Nurse Sidi's
"administrative duties was to triage emergency
grievances submitted by offenders." (Id.) Nurse
Sidi notes that "[a]s a registered nurse, [she] work[s]
exclusively under the supervision of a physician and [does]
not have the independent authority to order referrals for
treatment." (Id. ¶ 10.)
Friday, September 19, 2014, at approximately 9:00 a.m., Ames
injured his knee while playing basketball at SUSP. (Am.
Compl. ¶ 1.) Ames was taken to the infirmary where he
was examined by Nurse Street. (Id. ¶¶
4-7.) Ames told Nurse Street that he was in a lot of pain and
wanted to go to the hospital. (Id. ¶ 7.) Nurse
Street told Ames that only Dr. Gujral could authorize
emergency treatment outside of SUSP and he was not currently
at SUSP. (Id. ¶¶ 8-9.) Nurse Street
contacted Dr. Gujral and informed him of Ames's injury.
(Id. ¶ 12.) Dr. Gujral refused to approve Ames
for outside emergency care. (Id. ¶ 13.) Dr.
Gujral. ordered Nurse Street to schedule Ames for x-rays and
an appointment with Dr. Gujral on Monday. (Id.)
Nurse Street wrapped the knee in an ace bandage (Medical
Records 1), and provided Ames with crutches and pain
reliever. (Am. Compl. ¶ 15.)
Monday, September 22, 2014, Ames asked Correctional Officer
Weatherby to check whether Ames was on the list to see the
doctor. (Id. ¶ 24.) Nurse Sidi received a call
from Weatherby and informed him that Ames was not on the list
and directed Ames to submit a sick call request if he would
like to be assessed. (Sidi Decl. ¶ 6.)
Weatherby informed Ames that he was not on the list to see
the doctor. (Am. Compl. ¶ 25.) Ames showed Weatherby his
injured knee and asked Weatherby to call the medical
department so that they would provide emergency care.
(Id. ¶ 26.) Upon seeing Ames's injured
knee, Weatherby's eyes "bulged ... in disbelief and
concern, and immediately called the medical department in
[Ames's] presence." (Id. ¶ 27.) After
the conclusion of the phone call, Weatherby told Ames,
"that he had just spoken with . . . Nurse Sidi, and that
she said he was not oh the list for medical, she would not
call him over, and that he needed to submit a sick call
slip." (Id. ¶ 31.)
told Ames to submit a Medical Emergency Grievance Slip and he
would deliver it to the Medical Department. (Id.
¶ 32.) At 1:30 p.m., Ames submitted his Medical
Emergency Grievance Slip, which explained that he had been
"seriously injured" and had been told he would see
the doctor on Monday and have x-rays taken. (Id.
¶ 33.) Upon receipt of the Medical Emergency Grievance
Slip in the medical department, "Ames's chart was
brought to Dr. Gujral, who was advised about the emergency
grievance and the injury assessment done by the nurse on
September 19, 2014." (Sidi Decl. ¶ 7 (citation
the non-life threatening nature of Mr. Ames's complaint,
the emergency grievance was deemed 'non-emergent' and
the grievance was returned to [Ames] indicating that his
chart had been left for the doctor to review. Thereafter, Dr.
Gujral signed off on the chart indicating that he had
reviewed the injury ...