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Lard v. Superintendent Arce

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois

August 16, 2016

COREY VINCENT LARD 2013-0606117, Plaintiff,
v.
SUPERINTENDENT ARCE, et al., Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          James B. Zagel, United States District Judge.

         Plaintiff, Corey Vincent Lard, presently a pretrial detainee as Cook County Jail, brought this pro se civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiff claims that Defendants, Superintendent Arce and Correctional Officer Crosby, failed to protect him from an attack by another detainee. Defendants have moved for summary judgment. For the reasons stated below, Defendants’ motion is granted.

         Background

         Consistent with the local rules, Defendants filed a Local Rule 56.1(a)(3) statement of undisputed facts and served Plaintiff a Local Rule 56.2 Notice, which explains in detail the requirements of Local Rule 56.1.

         Local Rule 56.1(b)(3) requires that the opposing party's response to the movant's statement of undisputed facts must respond to each numbered paragraph and include specific references to supporting materials for those statements that are disputed. L.R. 56.1(b)(3)(B). In addition, the opposing party must submit their own statement of any additional facts that require denial of summary judgment, including references to supporting materials to support the additional statement of additional facts. L.R. 56.1(b)(3)(C).

         Plaintiff failed to respond in any manner to Defendants' motion, including failing to respond to Defendants' undisputed facts or submitting his own statement of any additional facts that require denial of summary judgment.

         Plaintiffs status as a pro se litigant does not excuse him from complying with Local Rule 56.1. See McNeil v. United States, 508 U.S. 106, 113 (1993) ("we have never suggested that procedural rules in ordinary civil litigation should be interpreted so as to excuse mistakes by those who proceed without counsel"); Coleman v. Goodwill Indus. o/Se. Wis., Inc., 423 F.App'x 642, 643 (7th Cir. 2011) ("Though courts are solicitous of pro se litigants, they may nonetheless require strict compliance with local rules."); Wilson v. Kautex, Inc., 371 F.App'x 663, 664 (7th Cir. 2010) ("strictly enforcing Local Rule 56.1 was well within the district court's discretion, even though Wilson is a pro se litigant") (citations omitted); Cady v. Sheahan, 467 F.3d 1057, 1061 (7th Cir. 2006) ("even pro se litigants must follow rules of civil procedure"). Given Plaintiffs failure to comply with Local Rule 56.1(b), Defendants' Local Rule 56.1(a)(3) statements are deemed admitted. See N.D. 111. L.R. 56.1(b)(3)(C) ("All material facts set forth in the statement required of the moving party will be deemed to be admitted unless controverted by the statement of the opposing party."); Keeton v. Morningstar, Inc., 667 F.3d 877, 880-81, 884 (7th Cir. 2012); Parra v. Neal, 614 F.3d 635, 636 (7th Cir. 2010); Rao v. BPProds. N. Am., Inc., 589 F.3d 389, 393 (7th Cir. 2009); Ciomber v. Cooperative Plus, Inc., 527 F.3d 635, 643-44 (7th Cir. 2008) (affirming the district courts's refusal to consider plaintiffs Rule 56.1 response that did not comply with local rule); Raymond v. Ameritech Corp., 442 F.3d 600, 608 (7th Cir. 2006); Schrott v. Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., 403 F.3d 940, 943-44 (7th Cir. 2005); Smith v. Lamz, 321 F.3d 680, 682-83 (7th Cir. 2003).

         Based on the above, the pertinent facts are as follows:

         Plaintiff was incarcerated at the Cook County Jail during the relevant time period. (Defs' 56.1(a)(3) Statement ¶ 1.) Plaintiff was housed in Division I from June 6, 2013 to April 2014. (Id., ¶ 3.) During his incarceration in Division I, Plaintiff was never involved in any fights or incidents with officers. (Id., ¶ 4.) From Division I, Plaintiff was sent to segregation in Division IX, after he received a disciplinary ticket for a shank found in his cell. (Id., ¶ 5.) Prior to May 23, 2014, Plaintiff did not have any problems with anyone on the segregation tier. (Id., ¶¶ 7, 15.) Prior to May 23, 2014, there were no signs of trouble on the tier among the detainees. (Id., ¶ 14.)

         In segregation, detainees are allowed out of their cell for one hour a day. (Id., ¶ 6.) Detainees are not told ahead of time what time they will be let out of their cell. (Id., ¶ 26.) During the time outside their cell, the detainees are handcuffed. (Id.) There are two correctional officers assigned to segregation during each shift. (Id., ¶ 7.) There are twenty-two cells located on the segregation tier in Division DC, Tier 1-H, and each cell houses two detainees. (Id., ¶ 12.) The normal protocol in segregation is to let out the detainees housed in two adjacent cells at a time. (Id., ¶ 13.)

         On May 22, 2014, Plaintiff and another detainee, named "Lacey, " got into an argument over Plaintiff having an extra dinner tray. (Id., ¶ 19.) The next morning, Lacey punched Plaintiff while Lacey was handing out food trays and Plaintiff and Lacey fought. (Id.) Plaintiff was not seriously injured as a result of the fight. (Id., ¶ 20.) No incident report or disciplinary charges were filed regarding the fight, and Plaintiff did not file a grievance regarding the fight. (Id., ¶¶ 21-22.) Plaintiff did not ask to be placed in protective custody after the fight as he felt that incident was "just a fight" and he did not think his life was in "danger." (Id., ¶ 24.) Plaintiff did not plan any type of retaliation against Lacey and he thought the incident was going to be "swept under the rug." (Id., ¶ 25.)

         On May 25, 2014, Plaintiff was let out of his cell with his cellmate between 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. (Id., ¶ 26.) At the time Plaintiff and his cellmate were let out of their cell, Lacey was already out of his cell and on the telephone in the dayroom. (Id., ¶ 27.) Officer Crosby was on shift that evening on Plaintiffs tier. (Id., ¶ 28.) Plaintiff told Officer Crosby that he was not supposed to be let out with Lacey. (Id., ¶ 29.) Officer Crosby asked Plaintiff if he wanted to refuse to leave his cell; Plaintiff denied any intent to refuse and he existed his cell. (Id., ¶ 30.) A detainee can refuse to come out of their cell. (Id., ¶ 31.)

         After being let out of their cell, Plaintiff and his cellmate went to the shower area. (Id., ¶ 32.) While Plaintiff was in the shower, Officer Crosby loosened Lacey's handcuffs after Lacey complained they were too tight. (Id., ¶¶ 37-38.) In order for Plaintiff to get out of the shower, Officer Crosby had to unlock a shower gate. (Id., ¶ 35.) After Plaintiff was let out of the shower, he went to the dayroom. (Id., ¶ 39.) At some point, Lacey ran toward Plaintiff with two blades. (Id., ¶ 40.) Approximately two minutes passed between the time that Plaintiff was attacked by Lacey and the time that officers entered the tier. (Id., ¶ 41.)

         Between May 23 and May 25, Plaintiff did not say anything about the first incident to any officers because he did not want to seem like a snitch. (Id., ΒΆ 42.) Plaintiff did not have any conversation with ...


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