United States District Court, D. Minnesota
Raphael Mendez, Pro se.
M. Secord, Assistant United States Attorney, United States
Attorney's Office, Minneapolis, MN, on behalf of
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
MONTGOMERY U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter before the undersigned United States District Judge
for a ruling on Plaintiff Raphael Mendez's
(“Mendez”) Objection [Docket No. 45] to
Magistrate Judge Becky R. Thorson's June 26, 2017 Report
and Recommendation [Docket No. 44] (“R&R”).
Mendez objects to Judge Thorson's recommendation to grant
Defendants Officer T. Dole, Lt. Sladek, Dr. Gabel, Unknown
Discipline Committee (UDC) Members, Unknown Discipline
Hearing Officer (DHO) Members, and Warden L. LaRiva's
(collectively, “Defendants”) Motion to
Dismiss or Motion for Summary Judgment [Docket No. 23]. For
the reasons set forth below, Mendez's Objection is
overruled, the R&R is adopted, and the Motion is granted.
complete background of this dispute is fully set forth in the
R&R and is incorporated by reference. Briefly, Mendez, a
civil commitment detainee at the Federal Medical Center
(“FMC”) in Rochester, Minnesota, alleges that on
July 25, 2016, he was placed in the Segregated Housing Unit
(“SHU”) after Defendant Officer Olson determined
that Mendez had written a threatening email directed towards
his workshop supervisor, Mr. Jacobson. Defendant Dr. Gabel,
FMC Rochester's Chief Psychologist, interviewed Mendez
and concluded that Mendez was not responsible for his
threatening email because of his delusional beliefs. The
Discipline Hearing Officer (“DHO”) concurred with
Dr. Gabel's recommendation, and Mendez was released from
the SHU on August 1, 2016.
September 19, 2016, Mendez submitted an administrative claim
under 31 U.S.C. § 3723(a)(1) for items he alleges were
stolen from him while he was in the SHU. Mendez claimed he
lost personal property valued at $203.75 and legal documents
valued at $9, 796.25. This claim was reviewed and denied.
August 5, 2016, Mendez filed suit under 42 U.S.C. §
1983, seeking monetary compensation and a transfer to FMC
Butner, an institution in North Carolina. On January 31,
2017, Defendants filed their Motion to Dismiss or Motion for
R&R, Judge Thorson concluded that Mendez's claims are
barred by sovereign immunity. Even if sovereign immunity did
not apply, Judge Thorson determined that Mendez's
confinement in the SHU was not a due process violation, and
that his allegation concerning his lost property also did not
rise to an actionable claim. Mendez objects.
Standard of Review
standard of review of a magistrate judge's order on a
dispositive issue is de novo. See 28 U.S.C.
§ 636(b)(1)(C); D. Minn. LR 72.2. “The district
judge may accept, reject, or modify the recommended
disposition; receive further evidence; or return the matter
to the magistrate judge with instructions.” D. Minn