United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
M. YANDLE DISTRICT JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
Kent Stubbs, an inmate who is currently incarcerated at
Lawrence Correctional Center (“Lawrence”), brings
this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (Doc. 1).
Plaintiff alleges that he suffered a debilitating back injury
when he fell from his top bunk on April 10, 2017. (Doc. 1,
pp. 13-22). He further alleges that following the injury, he
was denied adequate medical care and reasonable
accommodations at Lawrence. Id. Plaintiff now brings
claims against prison officials for violating his rights
under the Eighth Amendment, Americans with Disabilities Act
(“ADA”) and Illinois state law. Id. He
seeks monetary damages and injunctive relief. (Doc. 1, p.
Complaint is now subject to preliminary review
pursuant to 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.
alleges the following in the Complaint: On April 10, 2017,
Plaintiff fell from his top bunk at Lawrence. (Doc. 1, p.
13). As Plaintiff climbed down from his bed, he lost his
balance and fell backwards. Id. He felt his back pop
when he hit the floor, and he could barely move. Id.
A large knot formed on his head. Id. Plaintiff's
left wrist and finger began swelling. Id.
officer (John Doe 1) responded to Plaintiff's cries for
help by notifying a lieutenant (John Doe 2) and nurse (Jane
Doe 1) about his injuries. (Doc. 1, p. 13). Lieutenant Doe 2
called for a stretcher, while Nurse Doe 1 examined Plaintiff.
Id. When the nurse learned how Plaintiff was
injured, she told Lieutenant Doe 2 that the prison
“really should have ladders on the beds [because she
has] seen more and more inmates fall and hurt
learning that a stretcher was unavailable, the three prison
officials lifted Plaintiff into a wheelchair, causing him to
suffer from additional pain in his lower back. (Doc. 1, p.
13). Plaintiff was taken to the prison's health care unit
(“HCU”) where a nurse took x-rays of his head,
back and hand. (Doc. 1, p. 14).
Shah met with Plaintiff to review the x-rays the same day and
told him that the x-rays showed no fractures. (Doc. 1, p.
14). When the doctor prepared to send Plaintiff back to his
cell, Plaintiff insisted that he could not move without the
help of a medical professional because he was in severe pain.
Id. Doctor Shah agreed to keep Plaintiff in the HCU
where he was issued a wheelchair, a low bunk/low gallery
permit and pain medication. Id.
following morning, Plaintiff was placed in an ADA cell with
no cellmate or ADA attendant. (Doc. 1, p. 14). Plaintiff
again fell and injured himself when he tried to get a drink
of water that night. Id. Unable to move, he lay on
the floor waiting for help. Id. For hours, no one
passed by his cell. Id. Plaintiff repeatedly soiled
himself in the process. Id. He missed breakfast and
lunch the following day as he continued to wait. (Doc. 1, p.
noon on April 12, 2017, Officer Bowker finally made rounds.
(Doc. 1, p. 15). Plaintiff told the officer about his
injuries and asked for immediate medical attention.
Id. The officer instructed him to submit his request
for medical care in writing. Id. Officer Bowker then
left and did not return during his shift. Id. While
continuing to wait for help, Plaintiff became weak, nauseous
and dehydrated. (Doc. 1, p. 15). He lay in his cell for 14
more hours with nothing to eat or drink. Id.
Plaintiff soiled himself several more times. Id.
the shift change, Plaintiff spoke with another officer, who
understood that his situation presented an emergency. (Doc.
1, p. 15). Plaintiff was taken on a stretcher to a local
hospital where he was evaluated and sent back to the prison
several hours later with ibuprofen (200 mg). Id.
Plaintiff returned to an ADA cell with no attendant. (Doc. 1,
p. 16). He sustained further injuries while trying to get out
of bed on April 30, 2017. Id. Officer Johnson and
the medical staff denied him emergency medical care.
7, 2017, Plaintiff began filing grievances to complain about
the unsafe beds and inadequate medical care. (Doc. 1, p. 16).
In response, Officer Johnson “harassed and
retaliated” against him. Id. Plaintiff filed
several emergency grievances seeking to transfer away from
Officer Johnson's wing, and the prison's placement
officer granted his request. Id.
Ahmed took over Plaintiff's care on May 24, 2017. (Doc.
1, pp. 16-17). Plaintiff describes the care he received from
the doctor as inadequate. Id. During their first
meeting, Doctor Ahmed failed to examine Plaintiff or renew
his prescription pain medication. (Doc. 1, p. 17). The
prescription expired two days later. Id. Despite
submitting dozens of additional requests for emergency
medical treatment, pain medication and an attendant,
Plaintiff was denied all further treatment by Doctor Ahmed,
HCU Administrator Cunningham, and Warden Lamb. (Doc. 1, pp.
only exception was a 2-month course of physical therapy
beginning on or around June 20, 2017. (Doc. 1, p. 18). During
his final session on August 18, 2017, the physical therapist
(Jane Doe 2) was accompanied by an assistant (Jane Doe 3),
who mistreated Plaintiff and made him perform painful
movements. Id. At the end of the session, Jane Doe 3
recommended canceling all further physical therapy. (Doc. 1,
Shah subsequently denied Plaintiff's requests for pain
medication, a seat cushion, a back brace and a referral to a
specialist. (Doc. 1, pp. 21-22). He would not interfere with