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Leger v. Spiller

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

February 13, 2015

WILLIAM P. LEGER, JR., No. N86167, Plaintiff,
v.
THOMAS A. SPILLER, Dr. VIPIN SHAH, WEXFORD HEALTH SOURCES, INC., CHRISTINE BROWN, and

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

STACI M. YANDLE, District Judge.

Plaintiff William P. Leger, Jr., an inmate currently housed in Pinckneyville Correctional Center. Pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, Plaintiff brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights with respect to the medical care he was afforded at both Pinckneyville and Menard Correctional Center.

This case is now before the Court for a preliminary review of the complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, which provides:

(a) Screening.- The court shall review, before docketing, if feasible or, in any event, as soon as practicable after docketing, a complaint in a civil action in which a prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity or officer or employee of a governmental entity.
(b) Grounds for Dismissal.- On review, the court shall identify cognizable claims or dismiss the complaint, or any portion of the complaint, if the complaint-
(1) is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim on which relief may be granted; or
(2) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief.

An action or claim is frivolous if "it lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact." Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). Frivolousness is an objective standard that refers to a claim that "no reasonable person could suppose to have any merit." Lee v. Clinton, 209 F.3d 1025, 1026-27 (7th Cir. 2000). An action fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted if it does not plead "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). The claim of entitlement to relief must cross "the line between possibility and plausibility. Id. at 557. At this juncture, the factual allegations of the pro se complaint are to be liberally construed. See Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).

The Complaint

According to the complaint, in November 2010, while he was housed at Menard

Correctional Center, Plaintiff Leger injured his right shoulder. He received medical treatment, but was told that follow-up care would be necessary. Unknown medical administrators refused to authorize an MRI.

In December 2011, Plaintiff was transferred to Pinckneyville Correctional Center. During his intake interview, he informed an unidentified nurse about his shoulder injury and that follow-up care had been recommended. The nurse indicated that all of that information was in Plaintiff's medical records.

In January 2012, Plaintiff began visiting the Pinckneyville health care unit to inquire about follow-up care for his shoulder. He was told by unidentified medical personnel that he needed to realize that he was not the only inmate, and that he should wait to be called to the health care unit for follow-up care.

Plaintiff notes that during this period he was assigned to a top bunk, but there is no indication in the complaint that he asked any particular person for a low bunk permit. In February 2012, Plaintiff fell from the top bunk, breaking his ribs and exacerbating his shoulder injury. Nurses had x-rays taken and gave Plaintiff Tylenol and a low bunk permit. They stated that there was nothing else that could be done. Again, no follow-up care was offered for Plaintiff's painful shoulder injury. Plaintiff's requests for additional care were to no avail. A nurse did speak to Plaintiff, but did not do anything other than advise Plaintiff to continue to complain in the hope that he would be called to the health care unit. Between February and July, Plaintiff's multiple requests to Dr. Shah for follow-up care were ignored, leaving Plaintiff in pain and causing his condition to worsen. Administrative grievances were denied at all levels of the review process.

In July 2012, Plaintiff did see Dr. Shah, who only prescribed Tylenol and said he would see Plaintiff in 30 days (which apparently did not occur). Plaintiff was also scheduled for physical therapy, but his pass to go to therapy was not honored. Finally, in October 2012, Plaintiff began ...


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