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Bowers v. Dart

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division

September 12, 2016

MARQUE BOWERS, Plaintiff,
v.
THOMAS DART, Sheriff of Cook County, COOK COUNTY, ILLINOIS, Defendants.

          ANITA ALVAREZ State's Attorney of Cook County.

          Nicholas E. Cummings Assistant State's Attorney.

          Jacqueline Carroll Conflicts Counsel.

DEFENDANTS' RULE 50(A) MOTION FOR JUDGMENT AS A MATTER OF LAW

          Gettleman Judge.

         Defendants THOMAS J. DART, Sheriff of Cook County, and COOK COUNTY, ILLINOIS, by their attorney, ANITA ALVAREZ State's Attorney of Cook County, and through her Assistant State's Attorneys, and pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 50(a), move for judgment as a matter of law based upon the evidence submitted in this trial. In support thereof, the Sheriff's Office states the following:

         INTRODUCTION

         This Court found Defendants liable for the violation of Plaintiff's rights secured by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Additionally, the Court limited Plaintiff's damages to the time period of January 2013 through November 2015. Throughout the pendency of this action however Plaintiff was and remains a “prisoner” as defined by the Prison Litigation Reform Act. 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(h). Consequently, Plaintiff cannot recover damages “for mental or emotional injury suffered while in custody without a prior showing of physical injury…” 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(e). Plaintiff failed to show any physical injury in this case; accordingly, the jury award of damages should be vacated and the court should return a judgment in favor of Defendants.

         LEGAL STANDARD

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 50(a) states: Judgment as a Matter of Law.

(1) In General, if a party has been fully heard on an issue during a jury trial and the court finds that a reasonable jury would not have a legally sufficient evidentiary basis to find for the party on that issue, the court may:
(A) resolve the issue against the party; and
(B) grant a motion for judgment as a matter of law against the party on a claim or defense that, under the controlling law, can be maintained or defeated only with a favorable finding on that issue.
(2) Motion. A motion for judgment as a matter of law may be made at any time before the case is submitted to the jury. The motion must specify the judgment sought and the law and facts that entitle the movant to the judgment.

Fed. R. Civ. P. 50(a). Under Rule 50(a), “the district court must enter judgment if, under the governing law, a reasonable fact-finder could not find for the nonmoving party.” Shields Enterprises, Inc. v. First Chicago Corp., 975 F.2d 1290, 1294 (7th Cir. 1992). a reasonable fact-finder cannot not find Plaintiff suffered physical injury and, therefore, under ...


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