Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Knight v. Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

United States District Court, S.D. West Virginia, Huntington Division

May 31, 2018

CLAUDE R. KNIGHT and CLAUDIA STEVENS, individually and as Personal Representatives of the Estate of Betty Erelene Knight, deceased, Plaintiffs,
v.
BOEHRINGER INGELHEIM PHARMACEUTICALS, INC. Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          ROBERT C. CHAMBERS, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         Pending before the Court are a litany of motions, including Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 42) and Plaintiffs' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment (ECF No. 44). Importantly, four of Defendant's other still-pending motions are relevant to its summary judgment motion: Motion to Exclude Case-Specific Testimony of Dr. Hazem Ashhab (ECF No. 45) (“Motion to Exclude Dr. Ashhab”); Motion in Limine No. 3 to Exclude Evidence, Testimony, or Argument Related to Foreign Regulatory Actions, Foreign Labeling Materials and Company Core Data Sheet (ECF No. 65) (“Foreign Label Motion”); Motion in Limine No. 4 to Exclude Evidence and Argument Regarding Lack of a Reversal Agent (ECF No. 66) (“Reversal Agent Motion”); Motion in Limine No. 6 to Exclude Evidence and Argument Regarding Plasma Concentration Levels (ECF No. 68) (“Plasma Levels Motion”). In addition to fully briefing the motions, the parties provided oral argument before the Court at the Pretrial Motions Hearing on May 15, 2017. As explained below, the Court GRANTS, IN PART, AND DENIES, IN PART Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment (ECF No. 42), DENIES Plaintiffs' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment, DENIES Defendant's Motion to Exclude Dr. Ashhab (ECF No. 45), DENIES Defendant's Foreign Label Motion (ECF No. 65), DENIES Defendant's Reversal Agent Motion (ECF No. 66), and DENIES Defendant's Plasma Levels Motion (ECF No. 68).

         I. BACKGROUND

         This case is one in a series of product liability suits brought around the country, in which plaintiffs have claimed that they were harmed due to allegedly defective aspects of Pradaxa, a drug created and sold by Defendant Boehringer Ingelheim Pharamaceuticals, Inc. (“BI”). See generally Chambers v. Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc., No. 4:15-CV-00068 (CDL), 2018 WL 849081 (M.D. Ga. Jan. 2, 2018); Warren v. Boehringer Ingleheim Pharmaceuticals Inc., No. 1:16-cv-01326-SEB-DML, 2017 WL 3970666 (S.D. Ind. Sept. 8, 2017). In this variation of the nationwide cases, Ms. Betty Knight had been taking Pradaxa for roughly 18 months before she suffered a serious gastrointestinal bleed in May 2013. Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-1, at 2-3. Although doctors eventually stopped the bleed, Ms. Knight remained largely debilitated, being moved in and out of in-patient care facilities, hospitals, and her home. Id. A few months later, in September 2013, Ms. Knight passed away at the age of 84. Id. at 4; Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., ECF No. 41-3, at 2.

         A. Ms. Knight's Medical Condition and Events Leading to her Passing

         Among other conditions[1], Ms. Betty Knight suffered from atrial fibrillation (“A-Fib”), a condition in which the heart beats irregularly. Ex. 1 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., ECF No. 42-1, at 3-4; Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 2. This irregular heart beat can cause a pooling of blood in areas of the heart, and can lead to the development of blood clots. Ex. 1 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 3-4. Significantly, if these clots break away and travel to the brain, the suffering patient can have a stroke. Id.

         Ms. Knight's A-Fib, in addition to her being over 75 years-old, increased her stroke risk. Ex. 1 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 4. In fact, largely because of these two factors, Ms. Knight's primary care physician, Dr. Dawn MacFarland, characterized Ms. Knight has having a high risk of stroke. Id.

         As early as 2005, doctors had prescribed medicine to Ms. Knight in order to lessen her atrial fibrillation-related stroke risk. Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 2. The first drug Ms. Knight received was warfarin, which is marketed under the brand name Coumadin. Like Pradaxa, warfarin works as an anticoagulant that helps to prevent the development of blood clots, thereby reducing the risk of stroke. Ex. 4 to Pls.'s Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-4, at 22-23. And as with the use of any anticoagulant drug, warfarin increases the risk of a patient experiencing bleeding. Id. at 20.

         In order to address and mitigate the bleed risk associated with warfarin use, patients must submit to stringent dietary restrictions and a regular and frequent monitoring regime. Id. at 22-24; Ex. 8 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-8, at 6-8; Ex. 1 to Def.'s Mot. to Summ. J., at 5-6; Ex. 9 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-9, at 3. Warfarin has a narrow therapeutic range, which is a range of anticoagulant effect that decreases the risk of stroke without unnecessarily increasing the risk of a bleed. Ex 4 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 22-23. Based upon the measurement levels reflected during the monitoring tests, doctors adjust a patient's warfarin dose in an effort to keep the patient in the therapeutic range. Id.

         During her time on warfarin, Ms. Knight regularly submitted to this monitoring. Despite the inconvenience it posed to Ms. Knight, the regular testing was critical to her warfarin treatment. According to her doctors, they had a difficult time managing Ms. Knight's warfarin levels. Ex. 1 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 6. In fact, Ms. Knight's warfarin levels regularly fell outside of the therapeutic range. Id. Indeed, even while on warfarin, Ms. Knight's monitoring reflected that at times she was over-anticoagulated. Id. at 7. Despite this intermittent over-anticoagulation on warfarin, Ms. Knight did not experience a major bleed while on the medicine.

         With the numerous restrictions of warfarin, Ms. Knight and her family were interested in getting her on a different anticoagulant that would intrude less upon Ms. Knight's everyday activities. Ex. 1 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 7-8. And, prompted by a commercial they saw which touted the benefits of Pradaxa, Ms. Knight and her children made an appointment to speak with Dr. MacFarland about switching Ms. Knight to Pradaxa. Id.; Ex. 9 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 2; Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 2.

         Ms. Knight and her children visited Dr. MacFarland's office on October 17, 2011, at which point Ms. Knight first received a prescription for Pradaxa. Ex. 1 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 12-13; Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 2. Freed from the warfarin related constraints, Ms. Knight enjoyed not having to regularly submit to the monitoring and testing of her anticoagulant levels. Ex. 9 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 9. Instead of the frequent dose adjustment involved with warfarin, Dr. MacFarland's office prescribed a set dose for Ms. Knight's Pradaxa, 75 mg B.I.D. Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 2. For sales in the United States, Pradaxa's package insert, often referred to as the “label, ” recommended that doctors prescribe either a dose of 75 mg or 150 mg, dependent upon the patient's renal function. Id.; Ex. 2 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-2, at 2. Based upon Ms. Knight's severe kidney impairment, the Pradaxa label recommended the 75 mg dose, twice a day. Id. Dr. MacFarland's prescription followed the label's dosing recommendation. Id.; Ex. 8 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 8-9. At the time of her initial prescription, Ms. Knight was 82 years old, and took two P-gp inhibitor drugs, as well as Iburprofen three times a day. Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 2.

         In April 2013, Ms. Knight went to the hospital after suffering from a heart attack. Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 3. At the hospital, Ms. Knight underwent a left heart catheterization, with stint placement. Id. After the procedure, doctors continued to give Ms. Knight her Pradaxa, and required her to take two other drugs: Plavix and aspirin. Id.; Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 2. Plavix is an anti-platelet drug that affects the blood's clotting, and was prescribed to Ms. Knight to address her cardiac risk after the placement of two stints. Id. So too, taking aspirin also helps to prevent heart attacks. Doctors refer to the prescription of Pradaxa, Plavix, and aspirin together as “triple therapy.” Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 2; Ex. 4 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., ECF No. 42-4, 8-10. Like Pradaxa, both Plavix and aspirin increase the risk of bleeding. Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 2; Ex. 4 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 9; Ex. 5 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., ECF No. 42-5, at 5; Ex. 7 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-7, at 2.

         On May 20, 2013, almost a month after she had started the triple therapy, Ms. Knight reported to her doctors that she was experiencing symptoms indicative of gastrointestinal bleeding. Ex. 4 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 10-11; Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 3. According to her medical records, Ms. Knight had been experiencing those symptoms for roughly a week by the time she visited her doctor. Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 3. The bleed symptoms had continued to worsen over that time, and Ms. Knight was admitted to the hospital. Id.

         Dr. Ahmed Abdelgaber, the doctor treating Ms. Knight at the hospital, directed that she not receive her Pradaxa, Plavix, or aspirin, due to the active, serious bleed. Id.; Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 4. The next day, May 21, 2013, despite having not received the “triple therapy” medicines for over twenty-four hours, a coagulation test performed on Ms. Knight indicated that she was over-anticoagulated. Id. Ms. Knight's aPTT, a test that measures the level of anticoagulation, registered 47 seconds, an elevated score that reflected over-anticoagulation. Id.

         Dr. Charles Huh, a gastroenterologist, performed a endoscopy and a colonoscopy. Id.; Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 4. Dr. Huh found an active bleed in Ms. Knight's colon; he believed the bleed was due to an arteriovenous malformation. Dr. Huh stopped the active bleed by applying two endoscopic clips. Four days after her procedures, Ms. Knight was released from in-patient care, and transferred to the skilled nursing unit of St. Mary's Medical Center. Id. At some point shortly after her procedure, Ms. Knight resumed taking her Pradaxa. Id.

         Despite stopping the bleed, and resuming her Pradaxa, Ms. Knight's health still struggled. According to doctors who saw her in June and July of 2013, she was “not bouncing back” and she had “been weak since [her admission to the hospital].” Id. Additionally, during an appointment with a cardiologist that summer, and while still taking her Pradaxa, Ms. Knight had an another aPTT test showing that she was over-anticoagulated. Id. This time, her aPTT resulted in 67 seconds, indicating even greater over-anticoagulation. Id.

         Throughout that summer, Ms. Knight was admitted to the hospital various times, and generally did not demonstrate any improvement. Id. at 3-4. In one of her last admissions to the hospital, from August 17, 2013 until August 22, 2013, Ms. Knight received treatment at St. Mary's Medical Center after suffering a heart attack. Id. at 4; Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 5. Finally, just a few days after being released, on September 1, 2013, she was admitted again to St. Mary's Medical Center, but for the last time. Id. With an aPTT of 54 seconds at the time of her final hospitalization, Ms. Knight continued to demonstrate over-anticoagulation. Id. However, at no point during the multiple hospitalizations after May 2013 did Ms. Knight suffer another major bleed. The next day, on September 2, 2013, Ms. Knight passed away. Id.; Ex. 3 to Def.'s Mot. for Summ. J., at 5.

         B. Pradaxa and its Label

         Approved by the FDA in October of 2010, Pradaxa belongs to a relatively new class of drugs developed to provide an alternative to warfarin for stoke prevention in patients with atrial fibrillation. Ex. 4 to Pls.' Resp to Summ. J., at 24. In seeking FDA approval of Pradaxa, BI conducted a clinical trial called RE-LY, in which it tested dosages of 110 mg and 150 mg. Id. at 26. During the RE-LY trial, which involved thousands of participants, researchers measured the blood plasma concentration of dabigatran, the substance created by taking Pradaxa. Id. The concentrations varied widely. For people taking 150 mg of Pradaxa, their tough level of dabigatran-the level right before patients were supposed to take their next dose-ranged from 1.4 ng/ml to 809 ng/ml. Id. at 26. Even the 10th and 90th percentiles of Pradaxa plasma concentration demonstrated wide variability, going from 39.8 ng/ml to 215 ng/mL, respectively. Id. at 27. However, BI found that the potential “sweet spot” for diagatran plasma concentrations- the level at which the potential benefit of stroke prevention outweighed, or at least matched, the increased risk of bleeding-was between approximately 50 ng/ml and 150 ng/ml. Id. at 29-30. Although at least twenty percent of trial patients fell outside that range, the risks associated with falling outside that range were potentially dire. Id. at 26-36.

         BI's RE-LY trial showed that in patients with plasma concentrations of roughly 210 ng/mL or greater, the risk of stoke did not really change, but the risk of experiencing a major bleed doubled. Id. at 31. In a different, later trial, BI again confirmed this doubling of the major bleed risk when patients' plasma concentration met or exceeded a certain level. Id. Largely consistent with the earlier findings, in the later trial BI found that at 215 ng/ml patients' risk of a major bleed doubled. Id. Even BI's internal emails between its medical staff demonstrate the understanding that the blood plasma concentration of diagatran should not exceed roughly 200 ng/mL. In one email, the principle investigator for the RE-LY study told his colleagues that

the obvious implication of these data [is] that they point to a trough plasma concentration range for optimization of efficacy and safety in a range from 40-200 ng/ml. We need to say this more direct[ly]. Of course there is some uncertainty but the data are fairly clear. There is very good reason to never go above 200 ng/ml.

Id. at 33 (emphasis original to report).

         Despite the observation of BI and its employees that certain blood plasma concentrations of Pradaxa increased the risk of a major bleed without contributing any additional stroke prevention benefit, BI did not place this information in either Pradaxa's label or the Medication Guide that went to patients. Ex. 4 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 16-17; see generally Ex. 2 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J. Furthermore, BI did not include in those publications that the potentially dangerous concentrations appeared in patients who took the medication as recommended. Id.

         However, this was not the only pertinent information lacking from Pradaxa's label and Medication Guide, according to Plaintiffs. Although it apparently had information demonstrating that certain patients, who both suffer from severe renal impairment and take medications called Pgp inhibitors, should not take Pradaxa, BI did not include that information in the original label or Medication Guide. Ex. 3 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-3, at 7-11; see generally Ex. 2 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J. Later, BI did add information regarding the risk associated with those patients who both have renal impairment and take P-gp inhibitors. But BI did not take any additional steps to notify doctors or patients of this change. Instead, it merely changed the text of the label without bringing further attention to the alteration.

         Indeed, when Ms. Knight first received her prescription for Pradaxa, the label did not contain a specific warning about either the doubling risk at a certain level of plasma concentration or the risk associated with concomitant use of P-gp inhibitors. Ex. 3 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 7-11; see generally Ex. 2 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J. The amendment adding this warning came shortly after Ms. Knight was first prescribed Pradaxa. In that amendment, BI included at least some information regarding the increased bleed risk associated with simultaneous use of P-gp inhibitors in patients with renal impairment. Id. But at no point, other than having a general warning regarding a risk of bleeding, did BI detail the possibility of dangerous concentrations of Pradaxa that doubled the bleed risk without adding any meaningful stroke prevention. Ex. 1 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 4-5.

         In other markets, however, BI inserted this information into the package warnings for Pradaxa. For example, the Pradaxa label for the medication sold in Europe included warnings both about the increased risk of bleeding in patients whose plasma concentration exceed 200 ng/ml, and about the increased bleed risk in older individuals with renal impairment who are also on a P-gp inhibitor. Ex. 4 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., 49-52; Ex. 14 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-14, at 4-6. Consistent with this warning, BI recommended that European physicians should test the dabigatran exposure in patients with a high bleed risk. Id. BI also provided the same warning and instruction to doctors and patients in Canada. Id. at 49. In fact, in the U.K. label, BI went as far as instructing prescribing doctors and patients that “the exposure [ ] to dabigatran [(Pradaxa)] was approximately 6 times higher [in patients with severe renal insufficiency, like Ms. Knight, ] . . . than that observed in [patients] without renal insufficiency.” Ex. 14 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 25.

         Not only did BI not alert patients and doctors in the United States about some of the quantified, increased risks of bleeding in patients with certain characteristics, but it also appears that BI did not notify the FDA of at least some of the relevant risk information. Seemingly, despite having information regarding the doubled risk associated with Pradaxa concentrations of over roughly 200 ng/mL, BI never informed the FDA of this “cut-off value.” Ex. 33 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-33, at 103.

         C. Development of Praxbind, the Antidote to Pradaxa

         When Pradaxa first hit the market, there was no way to reverse its effects if a patient was suffering a bleed due to over-anticoagulation. For those suffering from such a bleed, treating medical teams could only attempt to manage the bleed. Ex. 26 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-26. BI's own medical developers noted that there was “an unmet medical need for reversal agents . . . to reverse the anticoagulant effects of [drugs like Pradaxa].” Ex. 25 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-25, at 7-8. However, by 2015, BI had discovered, produced, and received approval for an antidote for Pradaxa called Praxbind. See generally Ex. 23 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-23.

         In 2002, during the early stages of Pradaxa's formulation, BI first discovered the antibody that would catalyze the development of Praxbind. Ex. 24 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-24, at 2-3; Ex. 19 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-19, at 2. However, it was not until 2008 that the BI team realized that this antibody might provide a base from which to build an antidote to the anticoagulant effects of Pradaxa. Ex. 19 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 1. After that antibody was “humanized, ” BI doctors produced the antidote for testing and trials. Ex. B Def.'s Reply in Supp. of Def.'s Reversal Agent Motion, ECF No. 98-2, at 8-9. Reflecting its urgency to get Praxbind on the market, BI requested accelerated approval from the FDA. Ex. 26 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 1. Citing the need of Praxbind, the FDA granted the accelerated approval. Ex. 23 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 1. In all, the Praxbind development process and FDA approval took six years, a relatively short time for medications. Ex. B Def.'s Reply in Supp. of Def.'s Reversal Agent Motion, at 6-7.

         Studies demonstrated that Praxbind quickly and effectively reversed the effects of Pradaxa. This made it an antidote in cases where patients' anticoagulation resulted in a dangerous bleed. Ex. 27 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-27, at 6-7. The drug works by binding to dabigatran, the substance produced by Pradaxa that leads to anticoagulation, thus making dabigatran unavailable for use in the body. Ex. 26 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 1. Based upon these results, BI presented Praxbind as an “enhance[ment to] the safety profile of [Pradaxa], ” which would increase the value of Pradaxa. Ex. 25 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., at 8-9; see Ex. 31 to Pls.' Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51-31.

         D. Plaintiffs' Claims

         Upon these facts, Plaintiffs advance a list of claims, all generally alleging that BI is liable for Ms. Knight's death due to the defective nature of, and inadequate warnings for, Pradaxa. Plaintiff's first claim, Strict Products Liability (Count I), encompasses two theories: (1) that Pradaxa was defectively designed, and (2) that BI failed to adequately warn Ms. Knight about the dangers of taking Pradaxa. See Pls. Resp. to Summ. J., ECF No. 51, at 2-3. Specifically, Plaintiffs claim that Pradaxa was defectively designed at the time that Ms. Knight took it because there was no way to reverse Pradaxa's anticoagulant effect.

         Regarding the warnings, Plaintiffs claim that BI failed to provide sufficiently specific information, and that the Pradaxa label and Medication Guide lacked important information, which rendered them misleading and inadequate. Id. at 2. Plaintiffs' warnings claims break down roughly into three independent components. First, according to Plaintiffs, BI failed to include information regarding the higher risk of major bleeding events for patients who both suffer from severe renal impairment and take P-gp inhibitors. Id. at 3. Once BI did change the label to include a portion of the warning information for those with renal impairment who take P-gp inhibitors, Plaintiffs claim BI failed to properly bring that change to the attention of patients or prescribing doctors through a “Dear Doctor Letter.” Id. Second, BI never warned patients or doctors that there was a concentration level of Pradaxa which patients should not exceed due to the exponential increase in bleed risk. And, Plaintiffs contend that BI should have, but did not, instruct physicians to take measurements of the Pradaxa concentration to avoid a heightened bleed risk. Coupled with that recommendation to monitor, Plaintiffs assert that BI should have identified a test for doctors to accurately measure Pradaxa concentration levels. Third and finally, Plaintiffs contend that BI knew, but failed to make clear, the specific multipliers of risk increase associated with patient characteristics such as age, concomitant medications, and renal impairment. All of which, had they been in place, would have prevented Ms. Knight from suffering the alleged fatal bleed.

         Additionally, Plaintiffs assert a variety of common law and statutory claims including: negligence (Count II), negligent misrepresentation/fraud (Count III), breach of express warranty (Count IV), breach of implied warranty (Count V), negligence per se (Count VI), fraudulent concealment (Count VIII), and a claim for punitive damages (Count IX). Generally, Plaintiffs supports these claims based upon the same arguments and evidence as their defective design and failure to claims.

         II. STANDARD OF REVIEW

         A. Summary Judgment Standard

         To obtain summary judgment, the moving party must show that no genuine issue as to any material fact remains and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). “Material facts” are those that might affect the outcome of a case, and a “genuine issue” exists when a reasonable jury could find for the nonmoving party upon the evidence presented. The News & Observer Publ'g Co. v. Raleigh-Durham Airport Auth., 597 F.3d 570, 576 (4th Cir. 2010) (citing Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986)). In considering a motion for summary judgment, the Court will not “weigh the evidence and determine the truth of the matter[.]” Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 249 (1986). So too, it is not the province of the Court to make determinations of credibility. Gray v. Spillman, 925 F.2d 90, 95 (4th Cir. 1991). Instead, the Court will draw any permissible inference from the underlying facts in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587-88 (1986). Any inference, however, “must fall within the range of reasonable probability and not be so tenuous as to amount to speculation or conjecture.” JKC Holding Co. v. Wash. Sports Ventures, Inc., 264 F.3d 459, 465 (4th Cir. 2001) (citation omitted).

         Although the Court views all underlying facts and inferences in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party, in order to survive summary judgment, the nonmoving party must offer some “concrete evidence from which a reasonable juror could return a verdict in his [or her] favor[.]” Anderson, 477 U.S. at 256. Summary judgment is appropriate when the nonmoving party has the burden of proof on an essential element of his or her case and, after adequate time for discovery, does not make a showing sufficient to establish that element. See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322-23 (1986). The nonmoving party must satisfy this burden of proof by offering more than a mere “scintilla of evidence” in support of his or her position. Anderson, 477 U.S. at 252. “Mere speculation by the non-movant cannot create a genuine issue of material fact” to avoid summary judgment. JKC Holding Co., 264 F.3d at 465.

         B. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.