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Hogle v. Baldwin

United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Peoria Division

September 18, 2017

DONNA HOGLE, as Administrator of the Estate of Patrick A. Regan, Deceased, Plaintiff,
v.
JOHN BALDWIN, Illinois Department of Corrections Director, MELVIN HINTON, WEXFORD HEALTH SOURCES, INC., GUY PIERCE, Pontiac Correctional Center Warden, LINDA DUCKWORTH, STEPHEN LANTERMAN, KELLY HAAG, REZWAN KAHN, UNKNOWN EMPLOYEES OF ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, UNKNOWN MEDICAL DIRECTOR OF PONTIAC CORRECTIONAL CENTER Respondents.

          ORDER & OPINION

          JOE BILLY McDADE, United States Senior District Judge

         The matter is before the Court on Defendants' Motions to Dismiss. (Docs. 7, 13). For the reasons explained below, Defendants John Baldwin, Melvin Hinton, and Guy Pierce's Partial Motion to Dismiss (Doc. 7) is granted. Defendants Kelly Haag, Linda Duckworth, Stephen Lanterman, Dr. Rezwan Kahn, and Wexford Health Sources, Inc.'s Motion to Dismiss (Doc. 13) is granted. Plaintiff has twenty-one days to file a second amended complaint to cure the deficiencies as noted.

         Background[1]

         While an inmate in the custody of Pontiac Correctional Center (“Pontiac”) located in Pontiac, Illinois, Patrick A. Regan hanged himself in his cell on February 10, 2016. (Doc. 2, ¶ 37). Regan had previously been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (“PTSD”), Bipolar Disorder, General Anxiety Disorder, Depression, and Borderline Personality Disorder. Id. at ¶2. Regan had been transferred between numerous facilities, including DeKalb County Jail (“DeKalb”), Vienna Correctional Center (“Vienna”), and Pinckneyville Correctional Center (“Pinckneyville”), before arriving at Pontiac on July 1, 2015. Id. at ¶¶31-35. While housed at Vienna, Pinckneyville, and Pontiac, Regan was seeing psychiatrists, attending therapy, and he was prescribed various psychotropic medications. Id. at ¶36. Regan had previously attempted suicide by hanging at DeKalb. Id. at ¶31.

         While at Pontiac, Regan insisted he remain in a cell alone because he feared for himself in that he might harm himself and his cellmates in response to his PTSD triggers. Id. at ¶¶5-6. Prior to the fateful day of February 10, 2016, Regan had not been seen by medical staff in eleven days. Id. at ¶37. Between January 23, 2016, and January 30, 2016, Regan met with four of the defendants, all of whom are employed by Wexford Health Sources, Inc. (“Wexford”): clinical social worker Kelly Haag, nurse Linda Duckworth, clinical social worker Stephen Lanterman, and Dr. Rezwan Kahn (collectively referred to as the “Medical Defendants”). Id. at ¶40. On January 23, 2016, Haag recommended that Regan remain on a ten-minute watch due to potential for self-harm. Id. at ¶41. The following day, Duckworth recommended that Regan be placed on fifteen-minute watches. Id. at ¶42. On January 25, 2016, Lanterman recommended that Regan be taken off crisis watch, with seven-day mental health professional and medical doctor follow-ups. Id. at ¶43. On January 30, 2016, Regan was seen by Dr. Kahn, prescribed psychotropic medications, and no follow-up sessions were scheduled before Regan took his life on February 10th. Id. at ¶39.

         On February 6, 2017, Plaintiff filed an eleven-count complaint against the Defendants.[2] Counts I-IV allege violations of the Fourteenth Amendment under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Illinois Department of Corrections (the “IDOC”) Director, John Baldwin, Chief of Mental Health Services for the IDOC, Melvin Hinton, Unknown Medical Director of Pontiac, Wexford, the Medical Defendants, Warden of Pontiac, Guy Pierce, and Other Unknown Employees of the IDOC for failing to (1) supervise Regan, (2) provide him with needed medical care, and (3) assess and treat Regan's mental health issues in a timely manner. (Doc. 2 at 13-23). Counts V-VII allege violations of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), 42 U.S.C. §§12131-12134, and the Rehabilitation Act, against Baldwin, Hinton, Unknown Medical Director of Pontiac, and Wexford for failing and refusing to accommodate Regan's medical and mental health disabilities. Id. at 23-30. Count VIII alleges that Wexford is liable for damages under Monell v. Department of Social Services of City of New York, 436 U.S. 658 (1978), for failing to establish and/or implement policies, practices, and procedures to ensure that Pontiac inmates received appropriate medical care. Id. at 31-32. Counts IX-XI allege wrongful death claims under Illinois law against Baldwin, Hinton, Unknown Medical Director of Pontiac, and Wexford. Id. at 32-37.

         On March 9, 2017, Defendants Baldwin, Hinton, and Pierce (collectively the “Correctional Defendants”) filed a Partial Motion to Dismiss. (Doc. 7). Their arguments are threefold: (1) Pierce and Baldwin are entitled to Eleventh Amendment sovereign immunity from damages under §1983 in their official capacities; (2) Plaintiff is not entitled to relief under the ADA or the Rehabilitation Act from Hinton in his individual capacity; and (3) this Court lacks jurisdiction over Plaintiff's wrongful death claim against Baldwin because the Illinois Court of Claims possesses exclusive jurisdiction over that claim. (Doc. 8).

         On April 3, 2017, the Medical Defendants and Wexford filed a Motion to Dismiss, (Doc. 13), arguing that Plaintiff fails to state a claim under the Fourteenth Amendment against all Defendants, and that she fails to state a claim for wrongful death or under the ADA and Monell against Wexford. (Doc. 14). The Medical Defendants and Wexford also argue that Plaintiff is improperly attempting to hold Wexford vicariously liable for the conduct of its employees. Id. at 5.

         Plaintiff has responded to both motions and they are ready for decision. (Docs. 18, 20).

         Legal Standard

         In ruling on a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), “the court must treat all well-pleaded allegations as true and draw all inferences in favor of the non-moving party.” In re march FIRST Inc., 589 F.3d 901, 904 (7th Cir. 2009). The complaint must contain “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). Furthermore, the complaint must “give the defendant fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the grounds upon which it rests.” Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007).

         To survive a motion to dismiss, a plaintiff's complaint must contain sufficient detail to give notice of the claim, and the allegations must “plausibly suggest that the plaintiff has a right to relief, raising that possibility above a ‘speculative level.'” EEOC v. Concentra Health Servs., Inc., 496 F.3d 773, 776 (7th Cir. 2007) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555). The plausibility standard requires enough facts to “present a story that holds together, ” but does not require a determination of probability. Swanson v. Citibank, N.A., 614 F.3d 400, 404 (7th Cir. 2010). Though detailed factual allegations are not needed, a “formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do.” Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555.

         Discussion

         I. Plaintiff's § 1983 Claims Pursuant to the Fourteenth Amendment Against Various Defendants Fail

         Before the Court are two separate motions: a partial motion to dismiss filed by the Correctional Defendants and a motion to dismiss filed by the Medical Defendants and Wexford. While the Court intends to analyze each motion separately below, there is one issue that is applicable to both the Correctional Defendants and Wexford that the Court will address first.

         Counts I-IV of Plaintiff's amended complaint bring causes of action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 pursuant to the Fourteenth Amendment against Baldwin, Hinton, Unknown Medical Director of Pontiac, Wexford, Pierce, and Other Unknown Employees of the IDOC. Count VIII also seeks damages under Monell against Wexford for alleged Fourteenth Amendment violations. A pre-trial detainee's constitutional right to adequate medical care derives from the Fourteenth Amendment, while the same right for a convicted prisoner derives from the Eighth Amendment. See Smith v. Dart, 803 F.3d 304, 310 (7th Cir. 2015). At all relevant times, Regan was a convicted prisoner serving a three-year sentence with the IDOC. (Doc. 2, ¶ 32). Therefore, Regan's constitutional right to receive adequate medical treatment while incarcerated derives from the Eighth Amendment.

         Plaintiff concedes that she mistakenly pleaded her § 1983 claims under the Fourteenth Amendment rather than the Eighth Amendment. Because these deficiencies can be cured, Plaintiff is granted twenty-one days to file a second amended complaint curing her deficiencies.

         II. The Correctional Defendants' Partial Motion to Dismiss

         The Correctional Defendants argue that (1) Pierce and Baldwin are entitled to Eleventh Amendment sovereign immunity from damages under § 1983 in their official capacities; (2) Plaintiff is not entitled to relief under the ADA or the Rehabilitation Act from Hinton in his individual capacity; and (3) this Court lacks jurisdiction over Plaintiff's wrongful death claim against Baldwin because the Illinois Court of Claims possesses exclusive jurisdiction over that claim. (Doc. 8). The Court will address each argument in turn.

         A. Baldwin and Pierce Are Entitled to Eleventh Amendment ...


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