United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
G. WILKERSON, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.
matter has been referred to United States Magistrate Judge
Donald G. Wilkerson by United States District Judge J. Phil
Gilbert pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B), Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure 72(b), and SDIL-LR 72.1(a) for a
Report and Recommendation on Plaintiff's Motion for
Preliminary Injunction (Doc. 2). For the following reasons,
it is RECOMMENDED the Motion for Preliminary
Injunction be DENIED and that the Court
adopt the following findings of fact and conclusions of law.
James Munson brings this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §
1983 for deprivations of his constitutional rights that
allegedly occurred at Menard Correctional Center and Lawrence
Correctional Center (“Lawrence”). In his
Complaint, Plaintiff claims the defendants have been
deliberately indifferent to his serious medical issues in
violation of the Eighth Amendment of the United States
Constitution (Doc. 1). The Court conducted a preliminary
review of the Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A
and Munson was allowed to proceed on the following claims:
Count 1 - Defendants showed deliberate
indifference to Plaintiff's serious dental needs and pain
associated therewith in violation of the Eighth Amendment.
Count 2 - Dr. Litherland retaliated against
Plaintiff for filing grievances by refusing Plaintiff
requested treatment when Plaintiff told him he had filed
grievances, in violation of the First Amendment.
claims revolve around the dental care he received while at
Menard and Lawrence from November, 2010 until filing of his
suit (Doc. 12, p. 2). Plaintiff alleges he requested a copy of
his dental records in March, 2017 (Doc. 2, ¶3). While he
was provided with documents, the records did not include
copies of any of his x-rays (Doc. 2, ¶ 7); specifically
x-rays taken on September 9, 2016 and March 20, 2017 (Doc. 2,
¶¶ 5, 7). When he asked why the x-rays were not
included, he was told by the nurse they did not have a
machine to copy x-rays and could not simply provide a regular
photocopy (Doc. 2, ¶ 7).
have confirmed that Munson's medical records contain
three panoramic x-rays from 2008, 2014 and 2016 (Doc. 47,
¶ 7). Additionally, “smaller” x-rays from
2017 are also contained in the medical records (Doc. 27,
¶ 7). Further, counsel has confirmed that Lawrence
(where the medical records are currently housed) does not
have the machinery necessary to copy or digitize x-rays and
that copying the x-rays using a regular photocopier would
distort the picture beyond use (Doc. 47, ¶8).
the facts at issue are not in dispute, the Court finds a
hearing would be futile.
preliminary injunction is an “extraordinary and drastic
remedy” for which there must be a “clear
showing” that Plaintiff is entitled to relief.
Mazurek v. Armstrong, 520 U.S. 968, 972 (1997)
(quoting 11A CHARLES ALANWRIGHT, ARTHUR RMILLER, & MARY
KAY KANE, FEDERAL PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE § 2948 (5th ed.
1995)). The purpose of such an injunction is “to
minimize the hardship to the parties pending the ultimate
resolution of the lawsuit.” Faheem-El v.
Klincar, 841 F.2d 712, 717 (7th Cir. 1988). The Prison
Litigation Reform Act provides that a preliminary injunction
must be “narrowly drawn, extend no further than
necessary to correct the harm . . ., ” and “be
the least intrusive means necessary to correct that
harm.” 18 U.S.C. § 3626(a)(2). To obtain a
preliminary injunction the movant has the burden of
demonstrating: (1) a reasonable likelihood of success on the
merits; (2) no adequate remedy at law; and (3) irreparable
harm absent the injunction. Planned Parenthood v.
Commissioner of Indiana State Dept. of Health, 699 F.3d
962, 972 (7th Cir. 2012).
Munson has not shown that he will suffer any irreparable harm
absent an injunction.Irreparable harm requires proof of more
than a mere possibility of harm, although the harm does not
need to actually occur or even be certain to occur.
Michigan v. U.S. Army Corps of Eng'rs, 667 F.3d
765, 788 (7th Cir. 2011). The broadest reading of
Munson's motion would suggest he alleges that because he
has gotten photocopies of his x-rays in the past, Defendants
refusal to provide him with copies now indicates they may
intend to destroy them. The only basis for such a conclusion
is a hearsay statement from another inmate that Lawrence has
a propensity to destroy x-rays (Doc. 2, ¶ 9). In short,
Munson is speculating. Further, the response by Defendants
indicates the x-rays have not in fact been destroyed, but
rather remain part of Munson's medical file (Doc. 47,
¶¶ 7-8). Because Munson has presented only
speculation that his x-rays are likely to be destroyed, he
has failed to show he will suffer irreparable harm absent a
above stated reasons, it is RECOMMENDED the
Court DENY Munson's Motion for
Preliminary Injunction (Doc. 2) and that the Court adopt the