United States District Court, N.D. Illinois
January 12, 2004.
MICHAEL MARTIN, Plaintiff,
TOMMIE PETERSON, Defendant[fn1]
The opinion of the court was delivered by: PAUL PLUNKETT, Senior District Judge
*fn1 Though Martin originally sued a number, of other defendants as
well, Peterson is the only defendant who remains in the case.
(See 7/2/03 Min. Order.)
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Michael Martin has sued Tommie Peterson under 42 U.S.C. § 1983
for his alleged violation of Martin's Eighth Amendment rights. The case
is before the Court on Peterson's Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56(c)
motion for summary judgment. For the reasons set forth below, the motion
The Legal Standard
To prevail on a summary judgment motion, "the pleadings, depositions,
answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the
affidavits, if any, [must] 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." Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c). At this stage, we do not weigh
evidence or determine the truth of the matters asserted. Anderson v.
Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242. 249 (1986). We view all evidence
and draw all inferences in favor of the non-moving party. Michas v.
Health Cost Controls
of Ill., Inc., 209 F.3d 687, 692 (7th Cir. 2000). Summary
judgment is appropriate only when the record as a whole establishes that
no reasonable jury could find for the non-moving party. Id.
Plaintiff alleges that Peterson violated his Eighth Amendment rights by
refusing to allow him to see an eye doctor to correct the prescription in
plaintiff's glasses. To defeat Peterson's motion, plaintiff must proffer
some evidence that his vision problem was a serious medical need to which
Peterson was deliberately indifferent. Wynn v. Southward,
251 F.3d 588, 593 (7th Cir. 2001). The mechanism for submitting such
evidence is set forth in Local Rule 56.1, which requires plaintiff to
respond to defendant's LR 56.1(a)(3) statement of assertedly uncontested
material facts and to file his own statement of additional uncontested facts
that require the denial of summary judgment. Plaintiff has done neither. He
has, however, cited, to a portion of his own deposition in which he
testifies that he repeatedly asked Peterson to put his name on the list
of prisoners waiting to see the doctor, but Peterson refused. (Pl.'s
Resp. Mot. Summ. J, at 3-4.)
Even if we were to consider this improperly submitted evidence, it
would not save plaintiff's claim because the cited testimony addresses
only one element of plaintiff's claim: deliberate indifference. To
prevail on this motion, plaintiff would also have to produce evidence
that suggested his vision problem constituted a serious medical need.
Wynn, 251 F.3d at 593; see Guttierez v. Peters,
111 F.3d 1364, 1373 (7th Cir. 1997) (stating that some of the indicators of
serious medical need are: "[t]he existence of an injury that a reasonable
doctor or patient would find important and worthy of comment or
treatment; the presence of a medical condition that significantly affects
an individual's daily activities; or the existence of chronic and
substantial pain") (internal quotation
marks and citation omitted). Plaintiff has produced no such
evidence. As a result, we are left only with the unsupported allegation
that he had a serious medical need for glasses with his exact
prescription. Though that allegation was sufficient to defeat defendant's
motion to dismiss, it cannot save plaintiff from summary judgment.
Selan v. Kiley, 969 F.2d 560, 564 (7th Cir. 1992) (noting that
the party opposing summary judgment "cannot rest on the pleadings alone,
but must designate specific facts in affidavits, depositions, answers to
interrogatories or admissions that establish that there is a genuine
For the reasons set forth above, there is no genuine issue of material
fact on plaintiff's Eighth Amendment claim against defendant Peterson,
the only remaining claim in this suit. Consequently, Peterson's motion
for summary judgment is granted. This is a final and appealable order.
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