United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
DARYL M. CROWDER, # K-88903, Plaintiff,
DENNIS LARSON Defendant.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
MICHAEL J. REAGAN Chief Judge.
Daryl Crowder, brings this civil suit pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983, for the deprivation of his rights at Big Muddy
River Correctional Center (“Big Muddy”) and
Pinckneyville Correctional Center
(“Pinckneyville”). Plaintiff claims that he
suffered permanent injuries related to three falls which
would not have occurred had he been granted low bunk and low
gallery permits at Big Muddy and Pinckneyville. Specifically,
Plaintiff alleges that Defendant, Dr. Dennis Larson, was
deliberately indifferent to his request for permits needed
for his pre-existing medical conditions (Count 1). Plaintiff
also claims that the falls and resulting injuries were
because Defendant failed to order the permits which he claims
he should have received automatically due to his age (Count
matter is currently before the Court on Defendant
Larson's Motion for Summary Judgment filed on November
11, 2016. (Doc. 48). Plaintiff, proceeding pro se,
was given 30 days to file a response and has failed to do so.
The Court deems that failure an admission of the merits of
Defendant's motion pursuant to SDIL Local Rule 7.1(c);
Flynn v. Sandahl, 58 F.3d 283, 288 (7th Cir. 1995)
(a failure to respond constitutes an admission that there are
no disputed material facts).
Plaintiff first saw Defendant in October 2010 for complaints
of back pain, Defendant examined Plaintiff and advised him to
work on range of motion exercises. (Doc. 48-4, p. 1-3). In
September 2011, Defendant prescribed Motrin after Plaintiff
experienced an incident of numbness in his legs. (Doc. 48-6,
p. 1-2). Between September 2011 and April 2013, Plaintiff was
seen regularly in the hypertension/cardiovascular care clinic
for an existing heart condition. (Doc. 48-7, p. 1-5). During
that time, Plaintiff did not request a low bunk permit or a
low gallery permit. (Doc. 48-2, p. 37).
testified that he fell from his bunk on April 9, 2013, due to
a back spasm and then again on April 13, 2013, due to
dizziness. (Doc. 48-2, p. 17-18). While Plaintiff stated that
his first bunk fall took place on April 9th, when he was
coming down from his top bunk and had a back spasm, the
medical record indicates that Plaintiff was having back
spasms and difficulty getting up on his bunk. The record
makes no mention of a fall. (Doc. 48-8, p. 1). The April 13th
record, which does not mention dizziness, indicates that
Plaintiff fell off of his bunk while climbing down due to
back spasms and leg pain. (Doc. 48-9, p. 1). Plaintiff did
not see Defendant at that time, and the injury report was
completed by a nurse. (Doc. 48-9, p. 2).
Plaintiff saw Defendant on April 22, 2013 with complaints of
neck and lower back pain and dizziness, Defendant placed
Plaintiff in the infirmary until May 2-ten days. (Doc. 48-11,
p. 1-17). He was given a low bunk permit, pain medications,
and instructions to walk slowly and come back with any
increase in pain. (Id. at p. 16-17). At his
follow-up appointment with Defendant later in May,
Plaintiff's medications and low bunk permit were
prescribed for three months. (Doc. 48-12, p. 1-2). At
Plaintiff's August follow-up appointment with Defendant,
Plaintiff's low bunk permit and medications were again
ordered to be continued for three more months. (Doc. 48-13,
p. 1-2). Plaintiff does not recall requesting a low gallery
permit during that time. (Doc. 48-2, p. 37).
November 15, 2013, prior to the scheduled follow-up
appointment for his low-bunk permit renewal, Plaintiff
visited the clinic complaining of neck, shoulder, and arm
pain. (Doc. 48-15). His records note that he had a future
follow-up appointment to renew the bottom bunk permit.
Defendant testified, and the medical records indicate, that
Plaintiff did not see Defendant on November 15.
(Id.; Doc. 48, p. 4). The next record made by
Defendant is dated November 26, 2013 and states that
Plaintiff fell down six stairs when his legs gave out. (Doc.
48-16). On that day, Plaintiff was admitted to the Crossroads
Community Hospital. (Doc. 48-17, p. 1). There, Dr. Szyfer
examined Plaintiff and found posterior spurring, disk
herniation, and spinal canal stenosis and admitted him to the
hospital for an MRI. (Doc. 48-17, p. 2). No reference is made
to dizziness. (Doc. 48-17, p. 1-6).
was discharged from the hospital the next day in stable
condition. (Doc. 48-17, p. 3-4). Plaintiff was again granted
a low bunk permit by Defendant. (Doc. 48-2, p. 56). Upon
Defendant's recommendation, Plaintiff was admitted to the
hospital in July 2014 for a C5-6 anterior cervical discectomy
and fusion. (Doc. 48-20). In October 2014, Plaintiff was
involved in an altercation with his cellmate and was
subsequently transferred to Pinckneyville. (Doc. 48-2, p. 56;
Summary Judgment Standard
Judgment is proper only “if the admissible evidence
considered as a whole shows there is no genuine dispute as to
any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a
matter of law.” Dynegy Mktg. & Trade v. Multi
Corp., 648 F.3d 506, 517 (7th Cir. 2011) (internal
quotation omitted) (citing Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a)). See also
Ruffin-Thompsons v. Experian Info. Solutions, Inc., 422
F.3d 603, 607 (7th Cir. 2005). The party seeking summary
judgment bears the initial burden of demonstrating-based on
the pleadings, affidavits, and/or information obtained via
discovery-the lack of genuine issue of material fact.
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986).
properly supported motion for summary judgment is made, the
adverse party “must set forth facts showing that there
is not genuine issue for trial.” Anderson v.
Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 250 (1986) (quoting
FED. R. CIV. P. 56 (e)(2)). A fact is material if it is
outcome determinative under applicable law. Id. at
248; Balance v. City of Springfield, Ill. Police
Dep't, 424 F.3d 614, 616 (7th Cir. 2005);
Hottenroth v. Vill. of Slinger, 388 F.3d 1015, 1027
(7th Cir. 2004). A genuine issue of material fact exists
“if the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could
return a verdict for the nonmoving party.”
Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248. “The nonmovant must
create more than mere doubt as to the material facts and will
not prevail by relying on a mere scintilla of evidence to
support its position.” CAE, Inc. v. Clean Air
Eng'g, Inc., 267 F.3d 660, 677 (7th Cir. 2001)