United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
CHARLES E. THORNTON, #Y19115, Plaintiff,
JACQUELINE LASHBROOK, DR. TROST, and GAIL WALLS, Defendants.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
R. Herndon, United States District Judge
Charles Thornton, an inmate who is currently incarcerated at
Menard Correctional Center (“Menard”), brings the
instant civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §
1983. (Doc. 1). In the Complaint, Plaintiff alleges that
Nurse Walls, Doctor Trost, and Warden Lashbrook would not
authorize a prescription refill for Neurontin, which he needs
to treat nerve pain associated with an old gunshot wound.
(Doc. 1, pp. 9-12). As a result, Plaintiff suffered from
debilitating pain while he waited for the refill from March
7-29, 2017. Id. Plaintiff now seeks declaratory
judgment and monetary damages against the defendants. He also
seeks “immediate” injunctive relief, in the form
of an order requiring prison officials to send him to an
expert for further evaluation and physical therapy before his
prescription expires. (Doc. 1, p. 13).
Complaint is subject to preliminary review under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A, which provides:
(a) Screening - The court shall review,
before docketing, if feasible or, in any event, as soon as
practicable after docketing, a complaint in a civil action in
which a prisoner seeks redress from a governmental entity or
officer or employee of a governmental entity.
(b) Grounds for Dismissal - On review, the
court shall identify cognizable claims or dismiss the
complaint, or any portion of the complaint, if the complaint-
(1) is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim on
which relief may be granted; or
(2) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from
action or claim is frivolous if “it lacks an arguable
basis either in law or in fact.” Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). Frivolousness is an
objective standard that refers to a claim that any reasonable
person would find meritless. Lee v. Clinton, 209
F.3d 1025, 1026-27 (7th Cir. 2000). An action fails to state
a claim upon which relief can be granted if it does not plead
“enough facts to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). The claim of
entitlement to relief must cross “the line between
possibility and plausibility.” Id. at 557. At
this juncture, the factual allegations of the pro se
complaint are to be liberally construed. See
Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816,
821 (7th Cir. 2009). The Complaint survives screening under
to the allegations in the Complaint, Plaintiff was shot in
the mouth prior to his incarceration. (Doc. 1, p. 9). The
bullet lodged in his spine near his C2 and C3 vertebrae.
Id. Because it was lodged next to Plaintiff's
spinal cord, surgical removal of the bullet could result in
paralysis. Id. Doctors at John H. Stroger Hospital
and Cook County Jail recommended against surgery.
consequently suffers from “chronic and agonizing
pain” that is treated with Neurontin. (Doc. 1, p. 9).
On March 6, 2017, a nurse at Menard informed Plaintiff that
his prescription was set to expire the following day.
Id. Plaintiff submitted several urgent sick call
slips, in which he requested a prescription refill and warned
medical staff that he would suffer from excruciating pain
without it. Id.
response, Plaintiff was scheduled for an appointment with
Doctor Trost on March 12th, but it was cancelled before
Plaintiff ever met with the doctor. (Doc. 1, p. 9). The same
day, Plaintiff filed an emergency grievance with Warden
Jacqueline Lashbrook. (Doc. 1, pp. 9-10). In it, Plaintiff
explained that he was experiencing “severe pain”
that was chronic in nature and prevented him from performing
daily tasks. (Doc. 1, p. 10). He allegedly suffered from
discomfort and pricking pain in his right shoulder and arm
that made it difficult to get out of his top bunk. (Doc. 1,
p. 11). At times, he could not read, write, or leave his
cell. Id. He complained that the prison's health
care unit and its director, Nurse Gail Walls, had “done
nothing to even reduce the pain.” (Doc. 1, p. 10).
scheduled for appointments with Doctor Trost on March 15th
and 17th. (Doc. 1, p. 10). However, these appointments were
also cancelled. Id. Doctor Trost never inquired into
the status of Plaintiffs pain or his prescription.
Id. He never provided Plaintiff with any treatment
in response to these complaints. Id.
March 19th, the prescription was finally refilled. (Doc. 1,
p. 11). However, Plaintiff did not actually receive it until
ten days later on March 29th. Id. In the ...