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Anctil v. Fitzpatrick

United States District Court, D. Maine

November 13, 2018

STEVE ANCTIL, JR.
v.
COMMISSIONER JOSEPH FITZPATRICK, et al.

          ORDER OVERRULING OBJECTION TO ORDER ON MOTION FOR ORDER AND ON MOTION FOR ORAL ARGUMENT AND HEARING

          JOHN A. WOODCOCK, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         After reviewing the dense and complicated history of this lawsuit, the Court overrules the pro se Plaintiff's objection to the Magistrate Judge's order on motion for order and on motion for oral argument and hearing because the Plaintiff failed to rebut the Defendants' contention that his lack of access to legal materials is based on his own decision not to request a change in status and in any event, he does in fact have access to legal material upon request to the prison librarian.

         I. BACKGROUND

         A. The Complaint

         On February 24, 2016, Steve Anctil, Jr., an inmate in the custody of the Maine Department of Corrections, acting pro se, filed a complaint against Commissioner Joseph Fitzpatrick and a number of subordinate officers, alleging that they wrongfully dismissed, denied, failed to investigate, and failed to respond to his grievances. Compl. (ECF No. 1).

         B. The First Screening

         On March 8, 2016, screening the Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e) and 1915A, the Magistrate Judge issued a recommended decision, recommending that the Court dismiss the Complaint. Recommended Decision After Screening Compl. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e), 1915A (ECF No. 9).

         C. The First Motion to Amend the Complaint, the Amended Complaint, and the Second Screening

         On April 6, 2016, Mr. Anctil filed a motion for leave to amend his Complaint. Mot. for Leave to Am. Compl. (ECF No. 16). On April 7, 2016, the Court vacated a judgment and order affirming the Magistrate Judge's recommendation to dismiss the Complaint and ordered Mr. Anctil to file an amended complaint within fourteen days. Order Vacating J. and Vacating Order Affirming Recommended Decision and Ordering Pl. to File Proposed Am. Compl. (ECF No. 17). On April 21, 2016, Mr. Anctil filed an amended complaint. Am. Compl. (ECF No. 18). On April 22, 2016, the Court referred the Amended Complaint to the Magistrate Judge for screening under § 1915A. Status Order (ECF No. 22). On June 6, 2016, the Magistrate Judge issued an order, screening the Amended Complaint and recommending its dismissal unless Mr. Anctil filed another amended complaint that asserted “an actionable claim.” Recommended Decision After Screening Am. Compl. at 4 (ECF No. 25).

         D. The Second Amended Complaint

         On July 7, 2016, Mr. Anctil filed a second amended complaint. Am. Compl. (ECF No. 31). On October 24, 2016, the Magistrate Judge issued another recommended decision in which he recommended that the Court dismiss all of Mr. Anctil's claims, except the failure to protect/train claim against Deputy Warden Troy Ross. Recommended Decision After Screening Compl. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1915(e), 1915A at 19 (ECF No. 36). On January 20, 2017, Mr. Anctil filed a motion requesting leave to supplement his amended complaint, Mot. to Req. Leave to Supp. Pleadings (ECF No. 46), and on February 23, 2017, the Magistrate Judge recommended that the Court deny the motion because the amendment was futile. Recommended Decision on Pl.'s Mot. for Leave to Amend (ECF No. 53).

         On February 28, 2017, Mr. Anctil objected to the October 24, 2016 recommended decision, citing his difficulty gaining access to the Maine Department of Corrections library, that the prison was opening his legal mail, that the prison system had failed to protect him from retaliation, that the Department of Corrections was illegally restricting his access to newspapers, that the prison was illegally monitoring his law-related telephone conversations, that state officials other than Deputy Warden Ross had failed to protect him, that prison officials had improperly denied him medical care, that the conditions of his confinement met the standard for deliberate indifference, that the prison lost some of his property, and that the Magistrate Judge erred in his evaluation of his grievance-based issues. Pl.'s Obj. to Recommended Decision (ECF No. 54). On May 15, 2017, Mr. Anctil filed an objection to the Magistrate Judge's February 23, 2017 recommended decision on Mr. Anctil's motion for leave to amend his second amended complaint. Pl.'s Obj. to Recommended Decision (ECF No. 65).

         On September 27, 2017, the Court affirmed the recommended decisions in part and rejected them in part. Order Affirming in Part and Rejecting in Part the Recommended Decisions of the Magistrate Judge (ECF No. 68). The Court affirmed all of the Magistrate Judge's recommendations except his recommendation that the Court dismiss Mr. Anctil's “claims related to his legal mail, and only that legal mail which pertains to Plaintiff's efforts to challenge the conditions of his confinement.” Id. at 13-14. As a consequence of this decision, the Court authorized service of process on Commissioner Joseph Fitzpatrick, Warden Rodney Bouffard, and Warden Randall Liberty. Id.

         E. The First Motion to Stay

         Meanwhile, on February 22, 2017, Mr. Anctil filed a motion to stay due to problems he was having with the Maine Department of Corrections librarian. Mot. to Stay at 1 (ECF No. 52) (“[T]he librarian refuses to return my Brief to me, although on February 14th, 2017, she advised Maine State Prison Officer Dougle that she is and has been in possession of my Brief”). On March 16, 2017, the Magistrate Judge denied Mr. Anctil's motion to stay. Order on Pl.'s Mot. to Stay (ECF No. 60).

         F. Deputy Warden Ross' Motion to Dismiss

         On October 5, 2017, Deputy Warden Troy Ross filed a motion to dismiss the complaint. Mot. to Dismiss of Def. Troy Ross (ECF No. 70). Mr. Anctil responded to the motion on November 8, 2017. Obj. to Def. Ross's Mot. to Dismiss (ECF No. 75). On December 15, 2017, the Magistrate Judge recommended that the Court deny the motion to dismiss. Recommended Decision on Mot. to Dismiss of Def. Troy Ross (ECF No. 80). On May 1, 2018, the Court affirmed the recommended decision ...


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