New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims

MCQUEEN v. THE STATE OF NEW YORK, #2000-009-439, Claim No. 100133, Motion No. M-62394


Synopsis


Claimant's motion for summary judgment denied.

Case Information

UID:
2000-009-439
Claimant(s):
RODNEY MCQUEEN
Claimant short name:
MCQUEEN
Footnote (claimant name) :

Defendant(s):
THE STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :

Third-party claimant(s):

Third-party defendant(s):

Claim number(s):
100133
Motion number(s):
M-62394
Cross-motion number(s):

Judge:
Nicholas V. Midey, Jr.
Claimant's attorney:
RODNEY MCQUEEN, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney:
HON. ELIOT SPITZER
Attorney General
BY: Timothy P. Mulvey, Esq.,
Assistant Attorney General of Counsel.
Third-party defendant's attorney:

Signature date:
November 17, 2000
City:
Syracuse
Comments:

Official citation:

Appellate results:

See also (multicaptioned case)



Decision

Claimant has brought this motion seeking an order granting him summary judgment.

The following papers were considered by the Court in connection with this motion:
Notice of Motion, Affidavit in Support, with Exhibits 1,2


Affirmation in Opposition, Affidavit of Francis Shaw 3,4

Reply Affirmation 5

This claim alleges negligence, gross negligence, cruel and unusual punishment, and intentional infliction of emotional distress against the State based upon an incident which occurred on January 27, 1999. On that date, claimant, an inmate at Cape Vincent Correctional Facility, allegedly suffered injuries when he fell from the top bunk of his double-bunked bed. The claim is essentially one alleging negligence against the State in connection with this fall, as well as medical negligence or malpractice regarding the medical treatment claimant received subsequent to his fall.

Summary judgment is a drastic remedy which deprives a party of its day in court and should not be granted where there is any doubt as to the existence of a material issue of fact (Moskowitz v Garlock, 23 AD2d 943). It is the procedural equivalent of a trial (Andre v Pomeroy, 35 NY2d 361). The role of the Court, therefore, on a motion for summary judgment is not to resolve material issues of fact, but instead is to determine if such issues exist (Sillman v Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp., 3 NY2d 395). In doing so, the Court must examine the submitted proof in a light most favorable to the party opposing the motion. Summary judgment may only be granted if the movant provides evidentiary proof in admissible form to demonstrate that there are no material questions of fact (Winegrad v New York Univ. Med. Center, 64 NY2d 851).

In support of his motion for summary judgment, claimant has reiterated and expanded upon the allegations made in his claim. He has not, however, submitted sufficient evidentiary proof in support of these allegations that would entitle this Court to render a judgment. Significantly, claimant has not provided any competent expert medical testimony sufficient to establish a prima facie case with regard to his claims of medical negligence and/or malpractice (see, Duffen v State of New York, 245 AD2d 653).

Furthermore, defendant has submitted the affidavit of Francis Shaw, the Fire and Safety Officer at Cape Vincent Correctional Facility at the time this claim accrued on January 27, 1999. Mr. Shaw states in his affidavit that the State had not been placed on notice of any unsafe or dangerous condition in the dormitory area in which claimant fell. This affidavit is sufficient to create an issue of fact with regard to the issue of negligence alleged against the State in permitting an unsafe condition to exist.

It is readily apparent, therefore, that material issues of fact exist in this claim, and summary judgment is therefore not an appropriate remedy.

Therefore, it is

ORDERED, that Motion No. M-62394 is hereby DENIED.


November 17, 2000
Syracuse, New York

HON. NICHOLAS V. MIDEY, JR.
Judge of the Court of Claims