United States District Court, District of Columbia
P. Mehta United States District Judge.
case is before the court on Defendants' Motion for
Summary Judgment, ECF No. 54. In accordance with Local Civil
Rule 7(h)(1), Defendants have included a Statement of
Material Facts (“Facts Stmt.”) as to which they
assert there is no genuine dispute, ECF No. 54-1. Plaintiff
Roxanne Mathews-Baker has failed to respond to
Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment, as her deadline
of September 14, 2017, has expired. Accordingly, as permitted
by Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56(e) and the law of this
Circuit, see Winston & Strawn, LLP v. McLean,
843 F.3d 503, 507 (D.C. Cir. 2016); Grimes v. District of
Columbia, 794 F.3d 83, 92 (D.C. Cir. 2015), the court
will treat the facts presented by Defendants as admitted,
see also L. Cv. R. 7(h)(1). Having conducted an
independent review of the record, see Winston &
Strawn, 843 F.3d at 507-08, the court finds that
Defendants have shown that they are entitled to judgment as a
matter of law. Consequently, it will grant Defendants'
motion for the reasons explained more fully
November 2013, a grand jury sitting in this court indicted
Plaintiff and thirty other individuals for multiple drug
conspiracy offenses. See U.S. v. Mathews-Baker, No.
13-cr-00305 (EGS) (“Crim. Case Docket”). On April
29, 2014, Plaintiff agreed to plead guilty to one count of
possession of heroin, but the judgment of conviction was not
entered until September 16, 2015.Meanwhile, on May 18, 2015,
the presiding judge “ordered Plaintiff to be place[d]
in a female halfway house and with work release.”
Compl. at 3, ECF No. 1. From May 2015 to June 2015, Plaintiff
resided at a halfway house in the District of Columbia owned
and operated by Defendants.
August 4, 2015, Plaintiff filed this action, claiming that
Defendants had violated her rights under the First, Fifth,
Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments during her time at the
halfway house. Compl. at 6-8. Plaintiff alleges that
Defendants imposed a “no movement policy, ” where
she felt “kidnapped” inside their building.
Id. at 6. As a result of that policy, Plaintiff
allegedly was (1) denied her First Amendment rights “to
attend her own church” and to access a law library to
research her case; (2) refused permission to leave the
facility to obtain medical treatment and medication from the
drug store, in violation of the Eighth Amendment; and (3) not
permitted to work in accordance with the judge's order.
Id. In addition, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants
violated her privacy rights under the Health Insurance
Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) when staff at the
halfway house conveyed certain information to potential
employers “when told not to do so.” Id.
at 7. Finally, Plaintiff sues Defendants generally for
“discrimination.” Id. at 1.
court has given Plaintiff ample opportunity to press her
claims, but she time and again has chosen not to do so. More
than one year after this case began, the court denied
Defendants' supported motions to dismiss for lack of
prosecution and instead issued a scheduling order for
discovery, which was to conclude by December 27, 2016.
See Minute Order, Sept. 30, 2016; Order, ECF No. 38.
On January 18, 2017, after Plaintiff expressed concerns about
divulging medical information to Defendant, the court issued
a Protective Order with regard to Plaintiff's medical
records and information, ECF No. 44; yet, Plaintiff did not
engage in litigation. As a result, Defendants moved again to
dismiss the case in its entirety for failure to prosecute. On
June 26, 2017, the court documented Plaintiff's egregious
history of failing to comply with orders and to participate
fully in discovery, but dismissed only Plaintiff's Eighth
Amendment medical claims in light of her persistent refusal
to disclose medical records and information. See
Mem. Op. and Order, ECF No. 51. The instant motion addresses
the remaining constitutional claims.
Rule of Civil Procedure 56 provides that a court should grant
summary judgment if “there is no genuine dispute as to
any material fact and [the moving party] is entitled to
judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A
material fact is one that is capable of affecting the outcome
of litigation. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477
U.S. 242, 248 (1986).
“mandates the entry of summary judgment, after adequate
time for discovery and upon motion, against a party who fails
to make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an
element essential to that party's case . . . on which
that party will bear the burden of proof at trial.”
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986).
The party moving for summary judgment “bears the
initial responsibility of informing the district court of the
basis for its motion” and identifying those portions of
the record that it believes “demonstrate the absence of
a genuine issue of material fact.” Id. at 323.
If the non-moving party does not oppose summary judgment,
then the facts put forward by the moving party may be treated
as conceded, but the burden still remains on the moving party
“to demonstrate why summary judgment is
warranted.” Grimes, 794 F.3d at 96-97
(Griffith, J., concurring). When a court's
“independent scrutiny confirms fatal shortfalls in the
evidence necessary to support a verdict in a nonmoving
plaintiff's favor, the motion may be granted.”
Grimes, 794 F.3d at 95.
Alleged Constitutional Violations
rely almost exclusively on Plaintiff's deposition
testimony, ECF No. 54-4 [hereinafter Pl.'s Depo.], which
contradicts Plaintiff's premise that she was subjected to
a “no movement policy” while at the halfway
house. Because Plaintiff has not filed an opposition and
refuted Defendants' facts adduced from her deposition,
the court accepts as true that Plaintiff “was given the
option of going to a church of her denomination either at the
facility . . . or ‘right up the street, '”
Facts Stmt. ¶ 5 (citing Pl.'s Depo. at 40, 52-53),
and permitted to attend two job interviews outside of the
facility, id. ¶ 6 (citing Pl.'s Depo. at
48). In addition, Plaintiff “was represented by . . .
counsel” in the criminal proceedings while at the
halfway house and, according to Defendants, “appealed
her conviction.” Facts Stmt. ¶¶ 3-4 (citing
Pl.'s Depo. at 58-59). No reasonable juror presented with
the foregoing testimony could return a verdict in
Plaintiff's favor with regard to her First and Fifth