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Wilhold v. Gebke

March 9, 2006

DAVID WILHOLD, PLAINTIFF,
v.
KRIS GEBKE, MADISON COUNTY, ILLINOIS, ROBERT HERTZ, SHERIFF OF MADISON COUNTY, ILLINOIS, SERGEANT HILL, INDIVIDUALLY AND AS AN EMPLOYEE OF THE MADISON COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT, AND OFFICER YOUNG, INDIVIDUALLY AND AS AN EMPLOYEE OF THE MADISON COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Reagan, District Judge

MEMORANDUM and ORDER

Now before the Court is Defendant Kris Gebke's motion for summary judgment (Doc. 20) and memorandum in support (Doc. 21). The Court begins its analysis with a brief recitation of the key facts and procedural history.

A. Factual Background and Procedural History

On September 13, 2003, Plaintiff David Wilhold was driving eastbound on Interstate 55/70 in Madison County, Illinois when Defendant Illinois State Trooper Kris Gebke initiated a traffic stop for improper lane usage. Upon stopping Wilhold, Trooper Gebke administered a field sobriety test, which Wilhold failed. Trooper Gebke then placed Wilhold in the back of his police car and administered what Wilhold refers to as the "blow test." Gebke then informed Wilhold that he was under arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol. Wilhold alleges that Trooper Gebke then beat Wilhold outside the view of the camera in Trooper Gebke's car before transporting Wilhold to the Illinois State Police District 11 Headquarters in Collinsville, Illinois. Wilhold was then taken to the Madison County Jail, arriving an hour after the initial traffic stop.

At the Madison County Jail, Wilhold alleges he refused to take a breathalyzer test and asked to speak to an attorney or at least his wife. Wilhold states that instead of being allowed to speak to an attorney or his wife, he was harassed by Trooper Gebke and other police officers at the Madison County Jail for refusing to take a breathalyzer test. Wilhold further alleges that while being placed in a holding cell at the jail, Wilhold was struck several times by Trooper Gebke, as well as by Sergeant Hill and Officer Young, employees of the Madison County Sheriff's Department. Wilhold states he was then placed in a restraint chair and continually harassed and struck by several officers. Wilhold asserts that, despite his requests, he was not allowed to call his wife and he was not provided medical treatment until the morning of September 14, 2003. Wilhold alleges he suffered severe and permanent physical injury as a result of the officers' actions and inaction.

On August 23, 2004, Wilhold filed his complaint against multiple defendants in this Court (Doc. 1). In Count I, Wihold brings a state law claim for battery against Gebke. In Count II, Wilhold brings a claim against Gebke, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, claiming violations of his rights under the Fourth, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. In Count III, Wilhold brings a state law battery claim against Sergeant Hill. In Count IV, Wilhold brings a Section 1983claim against Defendants Sergeant Hill, Sheriff Hertz and Madison County, Illinois. And in Count V, Wilhold brings a state law battery claim against Officer Young.

In Gebke's motion, Gebke asserts that he is entitled to summary as to those Counts directed towards him, Counts I and II. Wilhold has responded in opposition at Document 26, and Gebke has replied at Document 31.

B. Summary Judgment Standard

Summary judgment is proper if the pleadings, depositions, interrogatory answers, admissions, and affidavits leave no genuine issue of material fact, and the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. FED.R.CIV.P. 56(c). The moving party bears the burden of establishing both the absence of fact issues and entitlement to judgment as a matter of law. Santaella v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 123 F.3d 456, 461 (7th Cir. 1997).

In determining whether a genuine issue of material fact exists, the Court reviews the record in the light most favorable to the non-moving party and makes all reasonable inferences in the non-movant's favor. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986); Ulichny v. Merton Community School Dist., 249 F.3d 686, 699 (7th Cir. 2001); Miranda v. Wisconsin Power & Light Company, 91 F.3d 1011, 1014 (7th Cir. 1996).

C. Analysis

In his motion to dismiss, Gebke asserts several arguments for summary judgment. The Court considers each in turn.

Jurisdictional Basis for Count I

In Count I of his Complaint, Wilhold asserts that Gebke committed the common law tort of battery upon his person. Gebke argues that this Court should grant him summary judgment on this Count because Wilhold does not properly assert a jurisdictional ...


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