United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Springfield Division
DEVIN M. KUGLER, Plaintiff,
RAO, et al. Defendants.
SUMMARY JUDGMENT OPINION
MYERSCOUGH, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
proceeding pro se and presently civilly committed at
Rushville Treatment and Detention Facility, brought the
present lawsuit alleging claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983
and the Fourteenth Amendment and the Religious Land Use and
Institutionalized Persons Act, 42 U.S.C. § 2000cc-1,
related to the forced administration of psychotropic
medication. The matter comes before this Court for ruling on
the Defendants' Motions for Summary Judgment. (Docs. 88,
91, 100, 102). The motions are granted.
judgment should be granted “if the movant shows that
there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the
movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). All facts must be construed in the light
most favorable to the non-moving party, and all reasonable
inferences must be drawn in his favor. Ogden v.
Atterholt, 606 F.3d 355, 358 (7th Cir. 2010).
The party moving for summary judgment must show the lack of a
genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). In order to be a
“genuine” issue, there must be more than
“some metaphysical doubt as to the material
facts.” Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio
Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986). “Only disputes
over facts that might affect the outcome of the suit under
the governing law will properly preclude the entry of summary
judgment.” Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc.,
477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986).
is civilly committed at Rushville Treatment and Detention
Facility (“Rushville” or “TDF”)
pursuant to the Illinois Sexually Violent Persons Commitment
Act, 725 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 207/1 et seq.
Defendants were employed at the facility in the following
capacities: Defendant Vallebhaneni (also known as “Dr.
Rao”), Defendant Bednarz, and Defendant Tinwalla were
psychiatrists; Defendant Walker was the Director of Nursing;
Defendant Rhoades was a nurse; and Defendants Louck and Lodge
February 12, 2014, Plaintiff was removed from his therapy
group for reasons that included his use of derogatory
language towards other group members and an admitted
infatuation with his primary therapist. Shortly thereafter,
Plaintiff was placed in a mental health observation cell
after he threatened to kill staff members and attempted to
leave the facility. (Doc. 102-3 at 2-14). In Plaintiff's
words, “I was crying. I was screaming….I kicked
on doors, made a couple of threats…threatened
self-harm….” Pl.'s Dep. 99:13-15.
Bednarz prescribed Ativan, an anxiety medication, and Haldol,
an antipsychotic medication, at that time. (Doc. 113-1 at 9).
Plaintiff initially took the Ativan, but later refused it.
(Doc. 113 at 10). On February 13, 2014, he threatened to kill
another resident. (Doc. 88-6 at 13). On February 15, 2014,
staff observed Plaintiff to have scratches on his wrist,
presumably from a suicide attempt. (Doc. 113 at 10).
mid-February and March 25, 2014, Defendant Vallabhaneni and
Defendant Tinwalla met with Plaintiff separately on several
occasions. Defendant Tinwalla met with Plaintiff on February
16, 2014, and they discussed Plaintiff's attempts to walk
out of the facility. Plaintiff stated his recollection of the
events leading to his placement on mental health status was
“fuzzy.” Id. at 15.
Vallabhaneni met with Plaintiff on three occasions (February
22 and 28; March 7, 2014). Each time, Defendant Vallabhaneni
noted Plaintiff's refusal to take his medications.
Id. at 15-17; (Doc. 113-1 at 20-21). Defendant
Vallabhaneni diagnosed Plaintiff with manic bipolar disorder
with psychotic breaks. (Doc. 113-1 at 20-21). He also noted
Plaintiff's history of loss of self-control,
self-injurious behavior, agitation, and threats towards
others. Defendant Vallabhaneni concluded that Plaintiff had
the potential to cause self-inflicted harm or harm to others,
and he recommended enforced medication. Defendant
Vallabhaneni referred Plaintiff to Defendant Tinwalla for a
second opinion. After meeting with Plaintiff on March 9,
2014, Defendant Tinwalla concluded that Plaintiff
“would benefit from psychotropic medication (voluntary
or enforced) at this time.” Id. at 23.
March 14, 2014, Plaintiff threatened to kill staff members
and harm himself. Plaintiff had struck a window with his hand
until the shatterproof glass cracked. Plaintiff also had
scratched his left wrist, drawing blood in an apparent
was notified on March 24, 2014, that a hearing before the
Treatment Review Committee had been scheduled for the next
day. (Doc. 91-4 at 2). The notice informed Plaintiff of the
reasons for the hearing and also indicated that Defendant
Rhoades, a nurse, had been appointed as Plaintiff's Staff
Assistant. Plaintiff testified at his deposition that he was
allowed to submit a list of witnesses to testify on his
March 25, 2014, Plaintiff appeared before the Treatment
Review Committee (“Committee”). The Committee
consisted of three Rushville officials: Defendant Bednarz,
Defendant Louck, and another non-defendant official.
According to the documentation provided, the Committee noted
Plaintiff's then-recent suicide attempt, threats against
staff, and the window Plaintiff cracked in the healthcare
unit. Plaintiff also stated, according to the exhibit, that
he would not take “psychiatric medications.”
Plaintiff's witnesses were not called to testify, but
Plaintiff testified in his deposition that they would not
have offered any new information. Pl.'s Dep. 45:3-13;
(Doc. 113-1 at 25).
Committee “concur[ed] with [the] Involuntary
Administration of Psychotropic Medication.” (Doc. 91-4
at 1). As the basis for this decision, the Committee found
that Plaintiff suffered from a mental illness or mental
disorder, that medication was in his best interests, and that
a substantial risk that Plaintiff would harm himself or
others existed because of his mental condition. Plaintiff was
then placed on a forced regimen of psychotropic medication
(Zyprexa) until November 2014. Plaintiff was subsequently
placed on blood pressure medication to treat the side effects