United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
B. GOTTSCHALL UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
priapism is ‘a prolonged persistent erection which is
painful and last[s] for greater than four hours.'”
Defs.' Rule 56 Statement Material Facts
(“Defs.' SOF”) ¶ 64, ECF No. 124
(quoting Dep. of Dr. Christopher Lodowsky 41:4-7,
id. Ex. 7). Plaintiff William Cruz
(“Cruz”) developed a priapism in separate
incidents on April 19 and 25, 2012, while he was being held
as a pretrial detainee at the Cook County Jail
(“CCJ”). See Defs.' SOF ¶ 1
(Cruz entered CCJ on Feb. 20, 2012). He brought this action
under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for deliberate indifference to
his serious medical needs against Cook County; Cook County
Sheriff Tom Dart; and three correctional officers, Michal
Burkart (“Burkart”), Phillip Martin
(“Martin”), and Sharon Cox (“Cox”)
primarily for delaying treatment of his priapisms. Cruz
alleges that he experienced excruciating pain, had two
avoidable surgical procedures, and suffered tissue damage,
impotence, and psychological harm as a result of
defendants' deliberate indifference.
move for summary judgment. For the following reasons, the
court grants the motion in part, finding that a genuine
factual dispute exists over whether Cox was deliberately
indifferent to Miller's complaints of severe pain on
April 25, 2012.
Rule 56.1(a)(3) requires a party moving for summary judgment
to submit “a statement of material facts as to which
the moving party contends there is no genuine issue and that
entitle the moving party to judgment as a matter of
law.” Cracco v. Vitran Express, Inc., 559 F.3d
625, 632 (7th Cir. 2009) (citing N.D.Ill. L.R. 56.1(a)(3)).
Under Local Rule 56.1(b)(3), the nonmoving party then must
submit a “concise response” to each statement of
fact, “including, in the case of any disagreement,
specific references to the affidavits, parts of the record,
and other supporting materials relied upon.” N.D.Ill.
L.R. 56.1(b)(3)(B). The party opposing summary judgment may
also present a separate statement of additional facts
“consisting of short numbered paragraphs, ” with
citations to the record, that require the denial of summary
judgment. N.D.Ill. L.R. 56.1 (b)(3)(C); see also Ciomber
v. Coop. Plus, Inc., 527 F.3d 635, 643-44 (7th Cir.
2008). For summary judgment purposes, Local Rule 56.1(a)
requires the court to “deem admitted those facts that
are not contested in the parties' submissions related to
the motion for summary judgment.” Robinson v.
Bandy, 524 F. App'x 302, 305 (7th Cir. 2013) (citing
Raymond v. Ameritech Corp., 442 F.3d 600, 608 (7th
their reply, the defendants raise a number of objections to
Cruz's Rule 56.1 statement and his response to their Rule
56.1 statement. Most of these defects do not affect the
outcome here. The court disregards certain argumentative or
unsupported responses regarding material facts, most notably
Cruz's unsupported assertion that priapism is a
well-known reaction to certain medications, see
Pl.'s Resp. to Defs.' SOF ¶ 27, ECF No. 139.
See, e.g., Ciomber, 527 F.3d at 643-4
(affirming exclusion of unsupported, argumentative statements
in a plaintiff's Rule 56.1 response); Bolden v.
Dart, No. 11 C 8661, 2013 WL 3819638, at *1 (N.D. Ill.
July 23, 2013) (collecting cases and deeming some of the
movant's Rule 56.1 statements admitted because opposing
party did not cite record evidence disputing them in Rule
56.1(b)(3) response). Except where otherwise noted, the court
accepts the following undisputed facts as true for the
purpose of deciding defendants' summary judgment motion.
The April 19 Incident
was assigned to work the overnight shift on the unit where
Cruz was housed beginning at 11:00 p.m. on the 18th and
lasting through 7:00 a.m. on the 19th. Defs.' SOF ¶
26. Cruz began banging loudly on his cell door and demanding
medical attention shortly after his symptoms developed on
April 19, 2012. Pl.'s SOF ¶ 3. Cruz testified at his
deposition that his door was “right by the
officer's section.” Cruz Dep. at 28:23-24. The
parties direct the court to no evidence of Burkart's
whereabouts during this time period, however.
he entered the CCJ, Cruz had an experience similar to a
priapism but not to the extent of the incidents on April 15
and 25, 2012. See Defs.' SOF ¶¶ 5,
7-8. Cruz alleges that he developed priapisms as a result of
taking medication he was prescribed while at the CCJ. Cruz
estimated that he began experiencing symptoms of a priapism
“somewhere in the four--three to four range, maybe
five.” Cruz. Dep. 55:8-10; see also Pl.s'
Resp. to Defs.' SOF ¶ 12 (so admitting). According
to Cruz's testimony, he was not taken to the dispensary
(presumably on his tier of the CCJ) for “maybe two
hours” after he first began complaining about his
symptoms. Cruz Dep. 57:1-3; see also Id. at
time at which Cruz first developed symptoms, spoke with
Burkart, and was sent for further care is disputed. The
medical logbook maintained by Burkart states that Cruz
complained of a “reaction to medication.”
Defs.' Ex. 3 at 1. The entry also indicates that Burkart
called the dispensary in Division 10 at 4:30 a.m. Defs.'
SOF ¶ 3; Defs.' Ex. 3 at 1 (copy of logbook).
Another entry in the logbook states that Cruz was taken to
the Cermak Health Facility (“Cermak”) by another
officer at 5:00 a.m. See Defs.' Ex. 3 at 1.
Burkart had no further contact with Cruz after Cruz was taken
to the dispensary. Defs.' SOF ¶ 35. For present
purposes, Cruz's testimony that he banged on his door for
two hours after he developed symptoms demanding medical
attention must be accepted as true.
was eventually taken to Cermak. He testified that he talked
to different “officer[s] who [were] in charge of the
waiting room” at Cermak on April 19 and 25. Cruz. Dep.
at 34:21- 24. Both officers told him that patients
“were seen in the order they're received. First
in/first out.” Id. at 35:1-6. He was
transported to Stroger Hospital at 8:01 a.m. on April 19,
2012, where he received treatment. See Pl.'s SOF
The April 25 Incident
“was assigned to work the 11:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. shift
in 2012, ” and he was assigned to the tier and unit
where Cruz was housed on April 24-25, 2012. Defs.' SOF
¶¶ 19- 20. Cox was assigned to the same tier on the
7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. shift on April 25, 2012. Id.
¶ 21. “Neither Martin nor Cox knows what a
priapism is.” Defs.' SOF ¶ 22.
became aware of priapistic symptoms when he awoke around 4:00
or 5:00 a.m. on April 25, 2012, due to the pain he was
experiencing. See Cruz Dep. 61:13-15. Cruz
complained to a prison guard working the third shift,
identified only as “John Doe” in Cruz's
deposition, that Cruz “was in severe pain from a
priapism and was told there was nothing [the guard] could do
because it would delay [the guard] from leaving for the
day.” Defs.' SOF ¶ 17 (citing Cruz Dep.
complained to Cox at or shortly after she came on duty at
7:00 a.m. that he was in severe pain and experiencing
priapistic symptoms. See Defs.' SOF ¶ 10;
Pl.'s SOF ¶ 8. Cox responded with words to the
effect of, “You're still conscious, so that's
not an emergency.” Pl.'s SOF ¶ 8. She told
Cruz to fill out a health service request form and that she
would send him for medical treatment later. Defs.' SOF
unidentified nurse came onto the unit at approximately 8:30
a.m. Defs.' SOF ¶ 14. Cruz testified as follows
about the interaction:
Q. And what did you tell this [nurse] and what did this
[nurse] tell you?
A. Well, I told her, that I was having another episode of
priapism. I told her that I previously had one on the 19th. I
told her that I was actually in a lot of pain. And she told
me that just by virtue of the priapism that it was an
emergency and I should get down to the infirmary.
Q. Did she transfer you to the infirmary?
A. I 'm not really sure what happened there. There was
some kind of miscommunication between her and Cox. But I was
under the impression that I was supposed to be in the
infirmary immediately. Ms. Cox, however, was under the
impression when ...