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Treondous Robinson v. Salvador Godinez

February 3, 2011

TREONDOUS ROBINSON, PLAINTIFF,
v.
SALVADOR GODINEZ, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge Virginia M. Kendall

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER (B-41303)

Plaintiff, Treondous Robinson, currently an inmate at the Menard Correctional Center, filed this 42 U.S.C. § 1983 action against Cook County Jail officials and doctors, claiming that they acted with deliberate indifference to his recurring left knee injury, chronic right heel pain following his 2002 surgery, and a recurring problem with genital warts. More specifically, he alleges that the Defendants responded too slowly to his requests for medical attention and the medical treatment he received was inadequate.

Currently before this Court is a motion for summary judgment filed by the Defendants. Plaintiff has responded, and the Defendants have replied. For the following reasons, the Court grants the motion.

I. STANDARD OF REVIEW

Summary judgment is appropriate "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); see also Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986). In determining the existence of a genuine issue of material fact, the court construes all facts in a light most favorable to the non-moving party and draws all reasonable inferences in that party's favor. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986). "The evidence of the non-movant is to be believed, and all justifiable inferences are to be drawn in his favor." Id. at 255.

If the moving party meets its burden of showing that there are no issues of material fact and that he is entitled to a judgment as a mater of law, the non-moving party must "go beyond the pleadings and affirmatively demonstrate, by specific factual allegations, that there is a genuine issue of material fact." Borello v. Allison, 446 F.3d 742, 748 (7th Cir. 2006) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted); Celotex, 477 U.S. at 322-26. A genuine issue of material fact is not demonstrated by the mere existence of "some alleged factual dispute between the parties," Anderson, 477 U.S. at 247, or by "some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts." Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986). Rather, a genuine issue of material fact exists only if a reasonable finder of fact could return a decision for the nonmoving party based upon the record. See Anderson, 477 U.S. at 252; Insolia v. Phillip Morris Inc., 216 F.3d 596, 598-99 (7th Cir. 2000).

When addressing a summary judgment motion, the Court derives the background facts from the parties' Local Rule 56.1 Statements, which assist the court by "organizing the evidence, identifying undisputed facts, and demonstrating precisely how each side propose[s] to prove a disputed fact with admissible evidence." Bordelon v. Chicago Sch. Reform Bd. of Trs., 233 F.3d 524, 527 (7th Cir. 2000). Because Plaintiff is proceeding pro se, the Defendants served him with a "Notice to Pro Se Litigant Opposing Motion for Summary Judgment" as required by N.D. Ill. Local Rule 56.2. (R. 69.) The notice explains the consequences of failing to properly respond to a motion for summary judgment and to the undisputed material facts in the movant's Local Rule 56.1 Statement. (Id.) A litigant's failure to respond to a statement of fact in a Local Rule 56.1 Statement results in the court considering the uncontroverted statement admitted. Raymond v. Ameritech Corp., 442 F.3d 600, 608 (7th Cir. 2006). The court may also disregard responses that do not properly cite to the record or that offer only evasive denials. Cichon v. Exelon Generation Co., L/L.C., 401 F.3d 803, 809-10 (7th Cir. 2005); Brasic v. Heinemann's Inc., 121 F.3d 281, 284 (7th Cir. 1997).

In the present case, the Defendants filed their Rule 56.1 Statement (R. 68) and provided notice to Plaintiff of his need to respond. (R. 69.) Plaintiff responded to the motion for summary judgment, (R. 72), but did not respond the Defendants' Rule 56.1 Statement. The court may thus consider the Defendants' Rule 56.1 Statement's facts admitted, to the extent they are supported by the record. Raymond, 442 F.3d at 608. With these standards in mind, the court considers the evidence of this case.

II. FACTS

This case involves Plaintiff's inability to obtain adequate medical treatment for his knee, his ankle, and his genital warts in 2008. Plaintiff's claims begin with the reinjury of his knee on April 17, 2008. The evidence shows the following.

In 2002, Plaintiff Treondous Robinson had ankle surgery and had four screws and a plate placed in his right ankle. (R. 68, Defs. Rule 56.1 Statement ¶ 16, citing Exh. 3, Pl. 2009 Depo. 21*fn1 .) In 2006, while he was incarcerated at the Cook County Jail, he injured or reinjured his left knee while playing basketball. (R. 68, Defs. Rule 56.1 Statement ¶ 27, citing Exh. 4, Pl. 2010 Depo. 7.) Plaintiff states that he heard his knee pop and that he was treated in an emergency room. (R. 68, Exh. 4, Pl. 2010 Depo.7-8.) He contends that he was told that he tore his ACL, but no MRI was taken, and he was given only a brace. (R. 68, Rule 56.1 Statement ¶¶ 27-28; see also R. 68, Exh. 4, Pl. 2010 Depo. 9-11.)

In 2006 he was released from Cook County Jail ("CCJ"), but was reincarcerated in October 2007 and returned to CCJ. (R. 68, Exh. 4, Pl. 2010 Depo. 7-8.) When he entered CCJ, he was not wearing orthopaedic shoes, but instead wore high top gym shoes. (R. 68, Rule 56.1 Statement ¶ 17.) His high tops were confiscated, and he was given regular tennis shoes. (Id. ¶ 18). He states that he had constant pain in his Achilles heel when he walked. (Id. ¶¶ 19-20.)

On Apiril 17, 2008, Plaintiff hurt his left knee again. The record contains two versions of how he hurt his knee. According to a grievance he filed on April 17, 2008, he injured his knee when getting out of his top bunk. (Id., ¶ 21, citing Exh. 2 (copy of 4/17/08 Grievance.)) According to his deposition, Plaintiff's knee popped while he was playing basketball or wiggled as he walking down stairs. (Id., ¶ 22, citing Exh. 3, Pl. 2009 Depo. 22; see also Exh. 4, Pl. 2010 Depo. 8.)

Whichever way he hurt his knee, on April 17, 2008, Plaintiff filed a grievance stating (1) he injured his knee, (2) he informed Officer Lee that his knee was swollen and he could not bend it, and (3) he needed medical attention. (R. 68, Rule 56.1 Statement, ΒΆ 21, citing Exh. 2, copy of 4/17/08 Grievance.) The bottom of the grievance form indicates that it was received on April 23, 2008, by an officer or social worker named Smith; the upper right portion of the grievance indicates that it was referred to "medical staff;" and the second ...


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