The opinion of the court was delivered by: IRENAS
Pro se plaintiff Jorge Suarez brings this § 1983 action to recover compensatory and punitive damages for inadequate medical care he allegedly received while incarcerated at Camden County Correctional Facility ("CCCF"). Defendant William Young, M.D. ("Dr. Young") and plaintiff filed cross-motions for summary judgment pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 56. Because the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, has issued a final judgment on plaintiff's constitutional and state claims against Dr. Young, the doctrine of collateral estoppel (issue preclusion) bars these claims against him. Liability may not be imputed to the two municipal defendants under a respondeat superior theory, and the record does not reveal the type of deliberate indifference by any defendant necessary to support an Eighth Amendment claim against them. Accordingly, summary judgment will be granted on all claims in favor of all defendants.
Plaintiff alleges that on August 13, 1993, while he was incarcerated and awaiting trial at CCCF, he sought and was denied medical care for nausea, vomiting, dizziness, constipation, thirst and weight loss. Compl. P 18. On August 17, 1993, plaintiff, appeared before Superior Court Judge James J. Cianci on homicide charges. When he complained of illness Judge Cianci ordered a medical examination. See Pl. Ex. D. Dr. Young, the jail physician, performed the examination and reported to the judge on August 18, 1993, that plaintiff had "no abdominal tenderness, normal bowel sounds and no evidence of distress." See id.
On August 8, 1995, plaintiff sued Dr. Young, the Camden County Board of Chosen Freeholders, the Camden County Department of Corrections, the CCCF warden, a corrections officer and a Camden County Freeholder in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, alleging violations of his Sixth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment rights and medical malpractice. See Def. Ex. E at 1. On the same day plaintiff instituted an action against the same defendants in this Court alleging the same constitutional violations. See Compl. P 1.
On December 6, 1996, the Court denied plaintiff's motion to consolidate state and federal claims. On December 20, 1996, Superior Court Judge John B. Mariano granted summary judgment in favor of Dr. Young and dismissed plaintiff's complaint with prejudice.
Defendant filed the instant motion for summary judgment on June 17, 1997. On June 24, 1997, plaintiff filed a cross-motion for summary judgment.
Under Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c), a court may grant summary judgment "if the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law." The non-moving party may not simply rest on its pleadings to oppose a summary judgment motion but must affirmatively come forward with admissible evidence establishing a genuine issue of fact. See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 324, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265, 106 S. Ct. 2548 (1986).
In deciding a motion for summary judgment, the Court must construe the facts and inferences in a light most favorable to the non-moving party. Pollock v. American Tel. & Tel. Long Lines, 794 F.2d 860, 864 (3d Cir. 1986). The role of the court is not "to weigh the evidence and determine the truth of the matter, but to determine whether there is a genuine issue for trial." Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 249, 91 L. Ed. 2d 202, 106 S. Ct. 2505 (1986).
The substantive law governing the dispute will determine which facts are material, and only disputes over those facts "that might affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law will properly preclude the entry of summary judgment." Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248. A genuine issue for trial does not exist "unless the party opposing the motion can adduce evidence which, when considered in light of that party's burden of proof at trial, could be the basis for a jury finding in ...