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Preayer v. Ryan

United States District Court, D. Arizona

October 3, 2016

Roger Wayne Preayer, Plaintiff,
Charles L. Ryan, et al. Defendants.


          David G. Campbell United States District Judge

         Plaintiff Roger Wayne Preayer brought this pro se civil rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against multiple Arizona Department of Corrections (ADC) employees: (1) Deputy Warden D. Schuster; (2) Lieutenant Cheryl Malysa; (3) Corrections Officer (CO) Maria Piller; (4) CO II Jaudiel Barajas; (5) CO II Eduardo Arreola; and (6) Nurse Practitioner Carey Tucker. (Doc. 61).[1] Before the Court is Tucker's Motion for Summary Judgment for failure to exhaust administrative remedies, to which Arreola and Barajas filed a Joinder. (Docs. 92, 107).[2] Preayer opposes Tucker's Motion and objects to Arreola and Barajas' Joinder. (Docs. 99, 108.) The Court will deny the Joinder motion as moot and grant Tucker's Motion for Summary Judgment.

         I. Background.

         In Count I of his First Amended Complaint, Preayer alleges that he was subject to unconstitutional conditions of confinement from January through May 2014, when he was housed in an isolation cell at the Arizona State Prison Complex (ASPC)-Lewis, Morey Unit. (Doc. 61 at 5-19.) Preayer alleges that Barajas, Arreola, Malysa, Schuster, and Pillar were all aware of his cell conditions and failed to remedy the situation. (Id.)

         In Count II, Preayer alleges deliberate indifference to his serious medical need. (Id. at 20-24.) Preayer states that he has chronic high blood pressure, for which he has taken medication since 2002, but when he saw Tucker on February 26, 2014, Tucker cancelled Preayer's prescription. (Id. at 20.) Preayer alleges that he saw Tucker again a month later, on March 28, 2014, at which time he complained that since Tucker discontinued his medication, he had experienced dizziness, extreme pain, and disorientation. (Id.) Preayer requested reinstatement of the blood pressure medication. (Id.) According to Preayer, Tucker said Preayer no longer required medication, and he refused to issue a new prescription. (Id.) The next day, Preayer became light-headed and dizzy, and he tried summoning help via the emergency call button in his cell and by waving at the camera in his cell, but no one responded. (Id. at 20-21.) Preayer lost consciousness and was later found in a puddle of blood. (Id. at 21.) When medical arrived, Preayer's blood pressure was 184/108, and he was taken to the medical unit for treatment, after which his blood pressure medication was reinstated. (Id.)

         In its February 9, 2016 Screening Order, the Court directed Schuster, Malysa, Piller, Barajas, and Arreola to answer Count I, and Tucker, Barajas, and Arreola to answer Count II. (Doc. 65 at 6.)

         On June 15, 2016, Tucker filed his Motion for Summary Judgment, which pertains only to the claim in Count II. (Doc. 92.) Tucker argues that he is entitled to summary judgment on Count II because Preayer failed to exhaust administrative remedies as required under the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA), 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(a). (Id.)[3]

         On August 22, 2016, after the Motion for Summary Judgment was fully briefed, Arreola and Barajas filed a Joinder to Tucker's Motion. (Doc. 107.) They incorporate Tucker's argument and his Statement of Facts, and seek summary judgment as to the Count II claim against them. (Id.)

         Preayer objects to the Joinder motion. (Doc. 108). Preayer asserts that although the Court's Screening Order directed Arreola and Barajas to answer Count II, he did not name these two Defendants in Count II. (Id. at 2.) Preayer states that he named Arreola and Barajas only in Count I, and he indicates that the Court erred when it added these two Defendants to Count II. (Id.) Preayer concludes that because Arreola and Barajas are not Defendants in Count II, their Joinder is moot. (Id. at 3.)

         II. Joinder.

         In light of Preayer's clarification that he did not intend Arreola or Barajas to be named as Defendants in Count II, the Court finds that their Joinder motion is moot, and it will be denied. Arreola and Barajas are not Defendants in Count II.

         III. Summary Judgment Standard.

         A court must grant summary judgment “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); see also Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322-23 (1986). The movant bears the initial responsibility of presenting the basis for its motion and identifying those portions of the record, together with affidavits, if any, that it believes demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of material fact. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 323.

         If the movant fails to carry its initial burden of production, the nonmovant need not produce anything. Nissan Fire & Marine Ins. Co., Ltd. v. Fritz Co., Inc., 210 F.3d 1099, 1102-03 (9th Cir. 2000). But if the movant meets its initial responsibility, the burden shifts to the nonmovant to demonstrate the existence of a factual dispute and that the fact in contention is material, i.e., a fact that might affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law, and that the dispute is genuine, i.e., the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmovant. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248, 250 (1986); see Triton Energy Corp. v. Square D. Co., 68 F.3d 1216, 1221 (9th Cir. 1995). The nonmovant need not establish a material issue of fact conclusively in its favor, First Nat'l Bank of Ariz. v. Cities Serv. Co., 391 U.S. 253, 288- 89 (1968), but it must ...

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