New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims
SMYTHE v. STATE OF NEW YORK, # 2020-015-043, Claim No. 133137, Motion No. M-95147


Claimant's motion for summary judgment was denied as he failed to support the motion with copies of the pleadings or proof in admissible form.

Case information

UID: 2020-015-043
Claimant short name: SMYTHE
Footnote (claimant name) :
Defendant(s): STATE OF NEW YORK
Footnote (defendant name) :
Third-party claimant(s):
Third-party defendant(s):
Claim number(s): 133137
Motion number(s): M-95147
Cross-motion number(s):
Claimant's attorney: Francis Smythe, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney: Honorable Letitia James, Attorney General
By: Michael T. Krenrich, Esq., Assistant Attorney General
Third-party defendant's attorney:
Signature date: May 6, 2020
City: Saratoga Springs
Official citation:
Appellate results:
See also (multicaptioned case)


Claimant, proceeding pro se, moves for summary judgment pursuant to CPLR 3212.

Claimant, an inmate in the custody of the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, seeks damages for wrongful confinement arising from his 55-day period of punitive confinement without a hearing. In his affidavit submitted in support of the motion, claimant alleges he was confined on keeplock status on January 17, 2019, he was moved to the special housing unit on January 18, 2019, and he was issued a Misbehavior Report on January 19, 2019. A prison disciplinary hearing was commenced but not completed on January 24, 2019 and claimant was released from the SHU on March 12, 2019 without explanation.

In opposition to the motion, defendant contends the claimant's failure to submit copies of the pleadings and proof in admissible form requires denial of the motion.

A party moving for summary judgment "bears the heavy burden of establishing 'a prima facie showing of entitlement to judgment as a matter of law, tendering sufficient evidence to demonstrate the absence of any material issues of fact' " (Deleon v New York City Sanitation Dept., 25 NY3d 1102, 1106 [2015], quoting Alvarez v Prospect Hosp., 68 NY2d 320, 324 [1986]; see also Vega v Restani Constr. Corp., 18 NY3d 499, 503 [2012]; CPLR 3212 [b]). In this regard, CPLR 3212 (b) specifically requires that a motion for summary judgment be supported "by a copy of the pleadings and by other available proof, such as depositions and written admissions," and provides that "[t]he motion shall be granted if, upon all the papers and proof submitted, the cause of action or defense shall be established sufficiently to warrant the court as a matter of law in directing judgment in favor of any party." Only where the movant has made this showing does the burden shift to the opposing party "to produce evidentiary proof in admissible form sufficient to establish the existence of material issues of fact which require a trial of the action" (Alvarez v Prospect Hosp., 68 NY2d at 324). Here, claimant submitted his own affidavit but failed to submit copies of the pleadings or his remaining proof in admissible form. Accordingly, he failed to meet his burden of demonstrating an entitlement to summary judgment as a matter of law.

Based on the foregoing, claimant's motion for summary judgment is denied with leave to renew upon a proper showing.

May 6, 2020

Saratoga Springs, New York


Judge of the Court of Claims

Papers Considered:

1. Undated notice of motion;

2. Affidavit in support sworn to November 22, 2019, with attachments;

3. Affirmation in opposition dated January 24, 2020, with Exhibit A;

4. Response to opposition dated January 30, 2020, with attachments.