United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Springfield Division
EDWARD W. HEBELER, Plaintiff,
STATE OF ILLINOIS, ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, G. GOOD, and JOHN DOE, Defendants.
MERIT REVIEW OPINION
SUE E. MYERSCOUGH, District Judge.
This cause is before the Court for a merit review, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, of Plaintiff Edward W. Hebeler's claims and for consideration of his motion for appointment of counsel.
MERIT REVIEW UNDER 28 U.S.C. § 1915(A)
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2) and § 1915A, the Court is required to carefully screen a complaint filed by a plaintiff who seeks to proceed in forma pauperis. The Court must dismiss a complaint, or a portion thereof, if the plaintiff has raised claims that are legally "frivolous or malicious, " that fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or that seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. Id.
The test for determining if an action is frivolous or without merit is whether the plaintiff can make a rational argument on the law or facts in support of the claim. Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). A complaint fails to state a claim for relief if the complaint does not allege "enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007); Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678-79 (2009).
In reviewing the complaint, the Court accepts the factual allegations as true and liberally construes them in plaintiff's favor. Turley v. Rednour, 729 F.3d 645, 651 (7th Cir. 2013). Conclusory statements and labels are insufficient. Fed.R.Civ.P. 8; Schatz v. Republican State Leadership Comm., 669 F.3d 50, 55 (1st Cir. 2012) (holding that, in order to determine if a complaint states a plausible claim, the court must take non-conclusory, non-speculative facts as true, draw all reasonable inferences in the pleader's favor, and isolate and ignore statements that simply rehash claim elements or offer only legal labels and conclusions). Instead, sufficient facts must be provided to "state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face." Alexander v. United States, 721 F.3d 418, 422 (7th Cir. 2013) (internal quotation omitted).
Plaintiff Edward W. Hebeler is an inmate within the Illinois Department of Corrections ("IDOC"). Hebeler is and, at all relevant times, was housed at the Taylorville Correctional Center.
Hebeler alleges that he injured his knee in 1968 while serving in the Navy. Hebeler further alleges that he reinjured that same knee while playing softball at the Taylorville Correctional Center.
Hebeler contends that his Eighth Amendment rights were violated because the officials at the Taylorville Correctional Center failed to provide him with any medical attention for his knee. Hebeler claims that, after spending ten days in pain without receiving any medical attention, prison officials finally transported him to a local hospital for treatment.
By that time, however, Hebeler alleges that his knee had become infected, and he almost lost his leg as a result. Hebeler further alleges that, after being returned to the Taylorville Correctional Center, officials failed to provide him with therapy and medical care as prescribed by the doctors at the local hospital.
The problem with Hebeler's Complaint is not that it fails to state a cause of action upon which relief can be granted. "In order to prevail on a deliberate indifference claim, a plaintiff must show (1) that his condition was objectively, sufficiently serious' and (2) that the prison officials acted with a sufficiently culpable state of mind." Lee v. Young, 533 F.3d 505, 509 (7th Cir. 2008) (quoting Greeno v. Daley, 414 F.3d 645, 652 (7th Cir. 2005)); Duckworth v. Ahmad, 532 F.3d 675, 679 (7th Cir. 2008) (same). Hebeler's Complaint alleges that his knee condition was objectively sufficiently serious and that prison officials acting with a ...