United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM & ORDER
PHIL GILBERT UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Shaun Thompson brings this action pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 1983 for alleged deprivations of his constitutional
rights while he was a detainee at the Jefferson County
Justice Center. Specifically, Plaintiff alleges Defendants
failed to treat his serious medical needs while in custody.
He seeks monetary damages.
case is now before the Court for preliminary review of the
Complaint pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. Under Section
1915A, the Court is required to screen prisoner complaints to
filter out non-meritorious claims. See 28 U.S.C. §
1915A(a). Any portion of a complaint that is legally
frivolous, malicious, fails to state a claim upon which
relief may be granted, or asks for money damages from a
defendant who by law is immune from such relief must be
dismissed. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b). At this juncture, the
factual allegations of the pro se complaint are to be
liberally construed. Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance
Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).
makes the following allegations in the Complaint (Doc. 1): On
January 22, 2019, Plaintiff experienced chest pain, tingling
in his fingers and “heart fluttering.”
(Id., p. 1). He pushed the emergency call button
(presumably in his cell) and spoke with corrections officer
John Doe, asking to be taken to the emergency room.
(Id.). Doe refused, but did have Plaintiff's
blood pressure taken. (Id.). His blood pressure
registered at 122/86. (Id., p. 3). Dr. Lochard was
informed and told Doe to recheck his blood pressure in 2
hours. (Id., p. 1). After two hours, Plaintiff was
still complaining of the same symptoms and registered a blood
pressure of 105/77. (Id., pp. 1, 3). Lochard ordered
that Plaintiff be seen by the nurse in the morning.
alleges that he should have been take to the emergency room
for an EKG because he takes multiple blood pressure
medications. (Id., p. 2).
on the allegations in the Complaint, the Court finds it
convenient to designate the pro se action as a
Count 1: Fourteenth Amendment claim for failure to respond in
an objectively reasonable manner to a serious medical need
against John Doe and Dr. Lochard.
parties and the Court will use these designations in all
future pleadings and orders, unless otherwise directed by a
judicial officer of this Court. Any other claim that is
mentioned in the First Amended Complaint but not addressed
herein is considered dismissed without prejudice as
inadequately pled under Twombly.
fails to state a claim. The Fourteenth Amendment governs a
state's obligations to pretrial detainees. The standard
first asks whether a defendant acted purposefully, knowingly,
or recklessly when they considered the consequences of their
handling of the plaintiff's case. McCann v. Ogle
Cty., 909 F.3d 881, 886 (7th Cir. 2018) (citing
Miranda v. Cty. of Lake, 900 F.3d 335, 354 (7th Cir.
2018)). Neither negligence nor gross negligence satisfies
this element. Id. With respect to the second
element, looking at all of the facts and circumstances before
the defendant, a court must determine whether the response
was reasonable, without taking into account “any
subjective belief held by the individual.” Id.
Plaintiff has failed to plead any injury. “[T]here is
no tort-common law, statutory, or constitutional-without an
injury, actual or at least probabilistic.” Jackson
v. Pollion, 733 F.3d 786, 790 (7th Cir. 2013). Plaintiff
felt chest pain, tingling and fluttering. He does not allege
that any medical intervention was necessary, or that he
sustained any injury from not getting his desired trip to the
emergency room for an EKG. The fact that Plaintiff did not
get what he wanted is not, standing alone, a basis for a
claim that he was deprived of a constitutional right.
Plaintiff has not alleged any facts that suggest either John
Doe or Lochard acted purposefully, knowingly or recklessly
with regard to Plaintiff's condition, or that their
actions were objectively unreasonable. Doe provided initial
medical care to Plaintiff and consulted with Dr. Lochard. Doe
then followed Lochard's direction as to what was the
appropriate care-continued monitoring. If a prisoner is under
the care of prison medical professionals, a non-medical
prison official “will generally be justified in
believing that the prisoner is in capable hands.”
Arnett v. Webster, 658 F.3d 742, 755 (7th Cir.
2011). As to Lochard, he provided instructions for medical
monitoring. Plaintiff's claim is that he should have been
sent for more extensive monitoring at the local hospital. At
most, Plaintiff's Complaint might support a claim that
this decision was negligent. But as discussed above,
negligence-even gross negligence-is not adequate to support a
Fourteenth Amendment claim for failure to provide healthcare.
Count 1 is therefore dismissed without prejudice.