United States District Court, S.D. Texas, Corpus Christi Division
Tagle Senior United States District Judge
Court is in receipt of Magistrate Judge Jason B. Libby's
Memorandum and Recommendation (“M&R”) to
Dismiss Certain Claims and to Retain Case, Dkt. No. 10. The
Court is also in receipt of Plaintiff Fred Hoffman III's
(“Hoffman”) Objections and Memorandum in
Response, Dkt. No. 16.
is imprisoned in the state of Texas and is proceeding pro se
and in forma pauperis. Dkt. Nos. 1, 2, 8. He filed this
prisoner civil rights action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Id. In his complaint Hoffman named Assistant Warden
Corey Furr (“Furr”), Correctional Officer Felix
Anazor, Correctional Officer Vichente Martinez, Sergeant
Doroteo Fonseca and Texas Department of Criminal Justice
(TDCJ) Director Lorie Davis. Dkt. No. 1. Hoffman claims the
Defendants acted with deliberate indifference to his serious
seizure condition with strobe flashlights and by causing him
sleep deprivation, he additionally alleges he was subject to
retaliation. Dkt. No. 1. Hoffman seeks declaratory and
injunctive relief regarding the use of strobe flashlights by
TDCJ staff. Id. Hoffman also seeks to represent
other similarly situated inmates. Id.
Magistrate Judge issued his M&R on December 13, 2018 as a
frivolousness screening pursuant to the Prison Litigation
Reform Act. See 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).
After extensive review of the complaint and statement of the
relevant legal standards, the Magistrate Judge recommends
retaining deliberate indifference claims against Furr in his
official capacity for injunctive relief. Dkt. No. 10 at 1.
The Magistrate Judge further recommends that Plaintiff's
request to proceed as a class action be denied and that
Plaintiff's remaining claims against all Defendants be
dismissed. Dkt. No. 10 at 1.
objects to the recommendation primarily on three grounds: 1)
other Defendants are necessary to the litigation and should
not be dismissed; 2) it is improper to dismiss his
retaliation claim; 3) Plaintiff's request to proceed as
class action is valid because other inmates plan on joining
appropriate defendants the Magistrate Judge writes:
Given the size of the TDCJ, it is more likely that each
individual unit has day-today control over its operating
policies. Plaintiff's allegations indicate that Director
Davis already has directed McConnell Unit officials on the
use of strobe-capable flashlights but that her directive is
being ignored at the prison level. Therefore, for purposes of
obtaining injunctive relief, Assistant Warden Furr is the
individual most likely able to fashion the relief Plaintiff
is seeking regarding the use of flashlights should he prevail
on his claims. Because Assistant Warden Furr appears to be
best person to implement the injunctive relief requested, the
undersigned respectfully recommends that he remain in this
case and that the other individual defendants be dismissed as
to this claim.
Dkt. No. 10 at 11.
Magistrate Judge also notes:
“Should facts come to light as this case proceeds that
another prison official at the McConnell Unit is the best
person to implement Plaintiff's requested injunctive
relief, the undersigned will substitute that person in place
of Assistant Warden Furr.”
Dkt. No. 10 at 11 n 2.
objections to dismissing other parties who allegedly cause
him harm are understandable but not necessary. See
Dkt. No. 16. A party's officers, agents, servants and
employees are bound by the terms of an injunctive order.
See FDIC v. Faulkner, 991 F.2d 262, 267 (5th Cir.
1993); Polo Fashions, Inc. v. Stock Buyers Int'l,
Inc., 760 F.2d 698, 700 (6th Cir. 1985). The equitable
powers of trial courts are broad and flexible and can be
shaped to the necessities of a particular case. Lemon v.
Kurtzman, 411 U.S. 192, 200 (1973). As the Magistrate
Judge has already indicated, if an injunction is found to be
warranted, the best person to effect that injunction can be
substituted in place of Furr. See Dkt. No. 10 at 11
Court overrules Hoffman's objections regarding the
defendants and ADOPTS the M&R's
recommendation to ...