United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
ROBERT BLAKEY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Adam Ryan Jobes, an inmate at Stateville Correctional Center,
sued seven officers at Stateville under 42 U.S.C. § 1983
for the lack of drinking water in his cell for 86 days. .
Plaintiff also sued Officer Bidwell for allegedly retaliating
against him after Plaintiff filed this suit. Id.
Plaintiff claims that Defendants violated his Eighth
Amendment rights by demonstrating deliberate indifference to
Plaintiff's access to drinking water in his cell.
Id. Defendants moved for summary judgment on the
grounds that Plaintiff failed to exhaust his administrative
remedies and cannot show that his claims meet the objective
prong of an Eighth Amendment deliberate indifference claim.
. For the reasons explained below, this Court denies
Local Rule 56.1
following facts come primarily from Defendants' Local
Rule 56.1 statement of undisputed material facts. .
Plaintiff initially did not file a statement of additional
facts or directly respond to Defendants' statement,
though he did file a response brief to Defendants'
motion, , to which he attached various exhibits.
Defendants thus asked this Court to deem all the facts in
their Local Rule 56.1 statement admitted based upon
Plaintiff's failure to respond.  at 2-3. But in open
court on July 17, 2018, this Court granted Plaintiff's
unopposed motion to amend his previous submissions, .
Thus, this Court now considers Plaintiff's amended
response to Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment,
[96-1], although this corrected version still presents
significant deficiencies under Local Rule 56.1.
Court has “broad discretion” to enforce the local
rules governing summary judgment motions. Judson Atkinson
Candies, Inc. v. Latini-Hohberger Dhimantec, 529 F.3d
371, 382 n.2 (7th Cir. 2008); see also Petty v. City of
Chicago, 754 F.3d 416, 420 (7th Cir. 2014). Those rules
demand that the non-moving party respond to the moving
party's statements of fact with “specific
references” to record evidence to justify any denial.
Local R. 56.1(b)(3); see also Malec v. Sanford, 191
F.R.D. 581, 584 (N.D. Ill. 2000). Where a party fails to
properly respond to the moving party's statement, courts
deem admitted the “uncontroverted” portions of
the moving party's statements of fact. Raymond v.
Ameritech Corp., 442 F.3d 600, 608 (7th Cir. 2006);
see also Smith v. Lamz, 321 F.3d 680, 683 (7th Cir.
said, the local rules serve to assist courts “in
determining whether a trial is necessary.” Delapaz
v. Richardson, 634 F.3d 895, 899 (7th Cir. 2011).
Accordingly, and in the interests of justice and efficiency,
courts may exercise their discretion “in the direction
of leniency.” Aberman v. Bd. of Educ. of City of
Chi., 242 F.Supp.3d 672, 677 (N.D. Ill. 2017) (citing
Modrowski v. Pigatto, 712 F.3d 1166, 1169 (7th Cir.
2013)). Nor must a court faced with inadequate responses
“turn a blind eye” to facts available elsewhere
in the record. Farmer v. DirectSat USA, LLC, No.
08-c-3962, 2010 WL 3927640, at *2 (N.D. Ill. Oct. 3, 2010)
(quoting Little v. Cox's Supermarkets, 71 F.3d
637, 641 (7th Cir. 1995)).
Plaintiff's amended response, [96-1], appears respond to
the numbered paragraphs in Defendants' motion for summary
judgment, , rather than to the numbered paragraphs in
Defendants' Local 56.1 statement of undisputed material
facts, . Thus, Plaintiff still fails to respond to
Defendants' statement of facts in compliance with Local
Rule 56.1. Plaintiff's amended response also contains
four paragraphs offering statements of additional fact, all
of which were available in the record prior to July 17, 2018
through the exhibits that Plaintiff attached to his original
memorandum of law. Id.
light of the above, this Court deems all of Defendants'
statements of fact admitted except for paragraphs 13, 35, and
36. With respect to those paragraphs, Plaintiff's
exhibits provide admissible evidence that contradicts
Defendants' statements of fact, regardless of the formal
deficiencies of Plaintiff's Local Rule 56.1 statements.
Specifically, Plaintiff's deposition testimony conflicts
with the Stateville Dietary Manager's testimony that
inmates received a beverage with each of their three daily
meals. Compare [78-2] at 17-18, with 
¶ 13. And Plaintiff's affidavit and deposition
contradict Defendants' statements that Plaintiff did not
file any grievances regarding his lack of drinking water or
Bidwell's alleged retaliation. Compare [86-1]
and [78-2] at 40, with  ¶¶ 35, 36. At
this stage, this Court exercises its discretion to consider
Plaintiff's testimony. See Aberman, 242
F.Supp.3d at 677; Farmer, 2010 WL 3927640, at *2.
Access to Running Water
period relevant to his claim, Plaintiff was incarcerated at
the Stateville Correctional Center in Crest Hill, Illinois.
 ¶ 1. On August 18, 2014, Plaintiff was assigned to
a new cell that lacked running water. Id. ¶ 6.
Stateville did not fix the water in Plaintiff's cell
until November 11, 2014. Id. ¶ 7.
Tanner, the Dietary Manager at Stateville, testified that
during that period Plaintiff had access to beverages such as
milk, juice, or water at each of the three meals a day served
to inmates in their cells. [78-4]. Plaintiff testified that
he never skipped a meal while at Stateville but also stated
that he did not receive a beverage with his meals during this
period. [78-2] at 17-18.
relevant times, Plaintiff could purchase water from the
prison commissary.  ¶ 16. Plaintiff did this at
least once during the 86 days he lacked running water in his
cell. Id. ¶ 18. On some occasions, Plaintiff
also received water from the inmate in the cell next to him.
Id. ¶ 17. Plaintiff alleges that the longest he
went without any type of beverage during the time he lacked
running water in his cell was four days. Id. ¶
Bidwell's Alleged Retaliation
claims that Bidwell, a Stateville corrections officer,
retaliated against him after he filed this suit in May 2015.
See ;  ¶¶ 40-47. In support of that
claim, Plaintiff points to a grievance he filed on October
29, 2015 in which he alleged that correctional officers
denied him access to the law library by claiming that the law
librarian had quit and no one could fill in for her.
[86-2]. Plaintiff did not expressly name Bidwell
in this grievance. See id.
also testified that Bidwell would open the windows in
Plaintiff's area to let in freezing air, and would tell
the other inmates that he was doing it because of
Plaintiff's lawsuit. See [78-2] at 53-54.
Plaintiff filed a grievance on November 28, 2015 about
Bidwell's conduct, which he stated began around
mid-November. [86-3]. In the grievance form, Plaintiff
claimed that he asked other officers to shut the windows
because of the cold weather and they said they could not
because they had direct orders from Bidwell to leave them
open. [86-3] at 2. Plaintiff claimed that the cold air from
the open windows made him ill and he refused to visit the
nurse so as to avoid seeing Bidwell. Id. at 3. He
wrote that he feared he would be placed with gang members who
had previously threatened to kill and rape him in further
further testified in his deposition that in 2015 or 2016,
while he was in protective custody as a result of threats
made by Gangster Disciple (GD) gang members, he ended up in a
cell with a GD member. [78-2] at 54. He did not state that
Bidwell was personally responsible for this incident. See
id. Plaintiff also testified that in September 2015
another gang member attempted to sexually assault him and
said that Bidwell had ordered him to do so. Id.
Plaintiff filed a third grievance on December 1, 2015 in
which he wrote that inmate gang members had been threatening
him. [86-4]. He claimed that he ...