The opinion of the court was delivered by: CHARLES NORGLE, District Judge
Before the Court are Defendants' Motions for Summary Judgment*fn1
and Plaintiff's Motion for Partial Summary Judgment, all brought pursuant
to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56. For the following reasons,
Defendants' motions are granted in part and denied in part; Plaintiff's
motion is denied as moot.
On October 23, 1999, Melvin Bradich was arrested by members of the
Chicago Police Department ("Police Department"). Shortly after his
arrest, Bradich committed suicide in the Police Department's 4th District
On October 19, 2000, Melvin's mother, Delores Bradich, filed a
Complaint as Administrator of Melvin's Estate (the ".Estate") in the
Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, against the City of Chicago
("City") and several individual members of the Police Department. The
Estate's Complaint alleged, among other things, violations of
42 U.S.C. § 1983. On December 21, 2000, Defendant City removed the
Estate's Complaint to this court. On October ll, 2002, after two years of
discovery, the Estate filed its Second Amended Complaint once again
alleging, among other things, violations of 42 U.S.C. § 1983,
Essentially, the Estate alleges that both the City and the individual
Defendants violated Melvin Bradich's Fourteenth Amendment due process
rights by acting with deliberate indifference to his health and
well-being while he was in the Police Department's custody.
Prior to October 23, 1999, Bradich, who had a history of alcohol and
drug abuse, had been arrested twenty-three times by members of the
Chicago Police Department. There is no record of Bradich ever attempting
suicide during any of these arrests, or that family members or anyone
else advised appropriate law enforcement officials that there was a risk
On October 23, 1999, at approximately 3:00 p.m., Police Officers John
Hroma and James Baker observed Bradich on the street at 11144 S. Greenbay
Ave., in Chicago, Illinois. After
conducting an investigation, Hroma and Baker arrested Bradich, who was
the subject of an outstanding arrest warrant for driving under the
influence ("DUI Warrant"). Upon searching Bradich, Officers Hroma and
Baker discovered that he was in possession of a controlled substance,
Specifically, Bradich possessed a barbituate called Alprozolam
(commercially sold as Xanax).
Although it is unclear as to what time Bradich arrived at the 4th
District police station, it is undisputed that Officer Hroma delivered
Bradich to the district's lockup facility at approximately 5:00 p.m. At
this time, Police Officer Ronald Simmons and Detention Aide Craig Walker
were the only two members of the Police Department assigned to the lockup
facility. Officer Hroma did not communicate to Simmons or Walker that
Bardich was a heroin addict or that he needed any special attention. Upon
accepting custody of Bradich, Aide Walker proceeded to search him.
Determining that Bradich was intoxicated and unable to hold still long
enough to be fingerprinted, Walker escorted Bradich to a cell located
within one of the lockup facility's cell blocks.*fn3 The officers
placed Bradich in a cell which could be viewed from a video monitor.
After Bradich was placed in his cell, arrestee Calvin Stinson entered
the lockup for processing. Stinson, who estimates that he was in the
lockup for approximately ten minutes, observed several officers in the
lockup playing cards and watching television, Stinson did not report any
other relevant observations or any unusual behavior regarding his visit
to the lockup. It is also undisputed that Thomas Osborne, who was in the
cell adjacent to Bradich's cell, did not report any unusual behavior by
Bradich prior to the hanging.
Some time after Stinson left the lockup, Officer Simmons and Aide
Walker observed Bradich on the video monitor hanging from the bars of his
cell. Simmons and Walker immediately ran to
Bradich's cell and attempted to free him from his ligature. When
Bradich was freed from his ligature, he appeared to be alive. At some
time thereafter, Aide Walker ran to the front desk of the station to
summon an ambulance. Additionally, Captain Donald Hilbring, the 4th
District's Watch Commander on duty at the time, arrived in the lockup to
assist Simmons and Walker. Chicago Fire Department paramedics Donna
Parrott and Russell Lane were assigned to respond to Bradich's suicide
attempt at approximately 6:25 p.m. Prior to their arrival, unidentified
firefighters from Chicago Fire Department Engine Company 81 arrived on
the scene. When Parrot and Lane arrived, Melvin Bradich was dead.
Summary judgment is permissible when "there is no genuine issue as to
any material fact and . . . the moving party is entitled to judgment as a
matter of law," Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c). The non-moving party cannot rest on
the pleadings alone, but must identify specific facts, see Cornfield v.
Consolidated High Sch. Dist. No. 230, 991 F.2d 1316, 1320 (7th Cir.
1993), that raise more than a mere scintilla of evidence to show a
genuine triable issue of material fact. See Murphy v. ITT Technical
Services. Inc., 176 F.3d 934, 936 (7th Cir. 1999).
In deciding a motion for summary judgment, the court can only consider
evidence that would be admissible at trial under the Federal Rules of
Evidence. See Bombard v. Fort Wayne Newspapers, Inc., 92 F.3d 560, 562
(7th Cir. 1996). The court views the record and all reasonable inferences
drawn therefrom in the light most favorable to the non-moving party.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c); see also Perdomo v. Browner, 67 F.3d 140, 144 (7th
Cir. 1995). "In the light most favorable" simply means that summary
judgment is not appropriate if the court must make "a choice of
inferences." See United States v. Diebold, Inc., 369 U.S. 654, 655
(1962); see also First Nat'l Bank of Arizona v. Cities Service Co.,
391 U.S. 253, 280 (1968); Wolf v. ...