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Harvey v. Downey

September 25, 2008

ANTONIO HARVEY, PLAINTIFF,
v.
MICHAEL DOWNEY, CARL BROWN, AND JEAN FLAGEOLE, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Harold A. Baker United States District Judge

Memorandum Opinion and Order

Before the court are the defendants' summary judgment motion [29] and the plaintiff's response [33].

Background

Plaintiff Antonio Harvey alleges in this lawsuit that he was denied adequate medical care at the Kankakee County Jail, Jerome Combs Detention Center ("Jerome Combs"), in violation of his constitutional rights. Specifically, Harvey alleges that he was denied treatment for a hernia. Harvey brings a claim for money damages pursuant to 42 USC § 1983 against Defendants Michael Downey, the Chief of Corrections for Kankakee County, Carl Brown, the Assistant Chief of Corrections for Kankakee County, and Jean Flageole, the head of nursing at Jerome Combs.

Defendants assert that they are entitled to summary judgment because there is no evidence that Harvey's particular medical need was sufficiently serious or that Defendants were deliberately indifferent to that need. Defendants state that Harvey's requests for medical care were taken seriously and he was offered the opportunity to receive treatment by the jail doctor, but either refused to be examined or refused to come to the appointment on each occasion. The Defendants assert that they were not deliberately indifferent and are thus entitled to summary judgment.

Standard

Summary judgment "should be rendered if the pleadings, the discovery and disclosure materials on file, and any affidavits show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c). Any discrepancies in the factual record should be evaluated in the non-movant's favor. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986) (citing Adickes v. S.H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 158-59 (1970)). The party moving for summary judgment must show the lack of a genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). "Only disputes over facts that might affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law will properly preclude the entry of summary judgment." Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248.

"Summary judgment is the'put up or shut up' moment in a lawsuit, when a party must show what evidence it has that would convince a trier of fact to accept its version of events. Johnson v. Cambridge Indus., Inc., 325 F.3d 892, 901 (7th Cir. 2000). A party opposing summary judgment bears the burden to respond, not simply by resting on its own pleading but by "set[ting] out specific facts showing a genuine issue for trial." See Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e). In order to be a "genuine" issue, there must be more than "some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts." Matsushita Elec. Ind. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986). "If [the non-movant] does not [meet his burden], summary judgment should, if appropriate, be entered against [the non-movant]." Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e).

Affidavits must be based on the personal knowledge of the affiant and "set out facts that would be admissible in evidence." Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e) (emphasis added). Personal knowledge may include inferences and opinions drawn from those facts. Visser v. Packer Eng. Assoc., Inc., 924 F.2d 655, 659 (7th Cir. 1991). "But the inferences and opinions must be grounded in observation or other first-hand personal experience. They must not be based on flights of fancy, speculations, hunches, intuitions or rumors remote from that experience." Visser, 924 F.2d at 659.

Undisputed Material Facts

1. On April 24, 2006, plaintiff Antonio Harvey was booked into the Kankakee County Jail, Jerome Combs Detention Center ("Jerome Combs"), as a pretrial detainee. He remains a detainee at Jerome Combs today (Harvey Dep pp. 5-6, attached hereto as Exhibit A).

2. Defendant Michael Downey is the Chief of Corrections for Kankakee County.

3. Defendant Carl Brown is the Assistant Chief of Corrections for Kankakee County.

4. Defendant Jean Flageole is the head of nursing at Jerome Combs (Flageole Aff. para. 1, attached hereto as Exhibit B).

5. Harvey was diagnosed with a hernia sometime in 2003, when he was an inmate at the Galesburg Prison. Harvey was examined by a doctor at Galesburg, who wold him he had a hernia but did not mandate any ...


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