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Mooree v. Brace

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

September 5, 2019

SHUNG MOORE, Plaintiff,
HUBERT BRACE, et al., Defendants.


          Hon. Reona J. Daly United States Magistrate Judge

         The matter has been referred to United States Magistrate Judge Reona J. Daly by United States District Judge Nancy J. Rosenstengel 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 the Motion for Summary Judgment filed by Defendant Augusta Williams. It is RECOMMENDED that the District Court ADOPT the following findings of fact and conclusions of law, and Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment (Doc. 99) be GRANTED.

         Findings of Fact

         Plaintiff Shung Moore filed this pro se civil rights action pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983 alleging his constitutional rights were violated while he was incarcerated at Menard Correctional Center (“Menard”). Following the Court's Memorandum and Order (Doc. 88), Plaintiff is proceeding on the following claim:

Count 4:Eighth Amendment deliberate indifference claim against Augusta Williams (f/k/a Maciura) for delaying and denying treatment for Plaintiff's painful facial MRSA infection between April 10-15, 2015.

         Defendant Williams filed a motion for summary judgment arguing she was not deliberately indifferent to Plaintiff's medical needs. Plaintiff filed a Response (Doc. 104) asserting Defendant Williams was deliberately indifferent by delaying medical treatment for his MRSA infection.

         Plaintiff alleges on April 11, 2015, he “tried to get the attention of Defendant Maciura as she was exiting N2-2 Gallery” and that she did not respond to him when she passed by his cell (Plaintiff's Complaint, Doc. 1 at 19-20). Plaintiff states that Officer Griffin came back to his cell approximately five minutes later to ask what Plaintiff needed with Defendant Maciura (Id. at 20). Plaintiff alleges he showed him swelling on the left side of his face and told Griffin he needed antibiotics because his MRSA was “flaring up again” (Id.). Griffin left and returned a few minutes later to inform Plaintiff that Maciura scheduled him for sick call the following day (Id.)

         On April 12, 2015, Plaintiff was seen by a registered nurse for his MRSA infection at 8:50 a.m. and again at 12:10 pm (Plaintiff's Medical Records, Doc. 99-1 at 1-2). During the second visit, Dr. Trost was contacted by Defendant Maciura via telephone and Trost prescribed Bactrim DS, an antibiotic to be given orally, twice a day for 10 days (Id. at 2). It was also documented Plaintiff was to be scheduled to see the physician/nurse practitioner the following day (Id.). On April 13, 2015, Plaintiff was scheduled for the nurse practitioner call line but the appointment was cancelled because Plaintiff went to yard (Id.). The nurse practitioner ordered Plaintiff be rescheduled for the medical call line as a priority (Id.). On April 14, and 15, 2015, Plaintiff was scheduled to see a physician, but was not seen due to a lack of time (Id. at 3). On April 16, 2015, at 3:00 a.m. Plaintiff was seen by RN Hannah and complained he was not receiving treatment for his MRSA (Id. at 4). Hannah noted a cell shake down found no sulfa (Id.). Plaintiff was given a card of sulfa and scheduled to be seen by the physician that day (Id.). On April 16, 2015 at 12:45 p.m., Plaintiff was seen by Dr. Trost (Id. at 5). Trost examined Plaintiff and noted the plan was an oral antibiotic to be taken orally twice a day for ten days (Id. at 4). Plaintiff was seen by Trost again on April 17, 2015 (Id. at 5). In addition to the antibiotic, Plaintiff was prescribed 800 mg ibuprofen, gel shampoo, and prescription lotion (Id.).

         Plaintiff alleges Defendant Maciura delayed treatment of his MRSA by making two false entries in his medical records because he did not receive antibiotics on April 12, 2015, and he did not refuse his call-line pass by going to yard on April 13, 2015 (Doc. 1 at 24).

         Legal Standard

         Summary judgment is appropriate only if the moving party can demonstrate “that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322(1986); see also Ruffin-Thompkins v. Experian Information Solutions, Inc., 422 F.3d 603, 607 (7th Cir. 2005). The moving party bears the initial burden of demonstrating the lack of any genuine issue of material fact. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 323. Once a properly supported motion for summary judgment is made, the adverse party “must set forth specific facts showing there is a genuine issue for trial.” Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 250 (1986). A genuine issue of material fact exists when “the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party.” Estate of Simpson v. Gorbett, 863 F.3d 740, 745 (7th Cir. 2017) (quoting Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248). In determining a summary judgment motion, the Court views the facts in the light most favorable to, and draws all reasonable inferences in favor of, the nonmoving party. Apex Digital, Inc. v. Sears, Roebuck & Co., 735 F.3d 962, 965 (7th Cir. 2013) (citation omitted).

         The Eighth Amendment protects inmates from cruel and unusual punishment. U.S. Const., amend. VIII; see also Berry v. Peterman, 604 F.3d 435 (7th Cir. 2010). As the Supreme Court has recognized, “deliberate indifference to serious medical needs of prisoners” may constitute cruel and unusual punishment under the Eighth Amendment. Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 104 (1976). In order to prevail on such a claim, the plaintiff must first show that his condition was “objectively, sufficiently serious” and second, that the “prison officials acted with a sufficiently culpable state of mind.” Greeno v. Daley, 414 F.3d 645, 652-53 (7th Cir. 2005) (citations and quotation marks omitted).

         The following circumstances are indicative of an objectively serious condition: “[t]he existence of an injury that a reasonable doctor or patient would find important and worthy of comment or treatment; the presence of a medical condition that significantly affects an individual's daily activities; or the existence of chronic and substantial pain.” Hayes v. Snyder, 546 F.3d 516, 522-23 (7th Cir. 2008) (quoting Gutierrez v. Peters, 111 F.3d 1364, 1373 (7th Cir. 1997)); see also Foelker v. Outagamie Cnty., 394 F.3d 510, 512-13 (7th Cir. 2005) (“A serious medical need is one that has been diagnosed by a physician as mandating treatment or one that is so obvious that even a lay person would easily recognize the necessity for a doctor's attention.”).

         An inmate must also show that prison officials acted with a sufficiently culpable state of mind, namely deliberate indifference. Put another way, the plaintiff must demonstrate that the officials were “aware of facts from which the inference could be drawn that a substantial risk of serious harm exists” and that the officials actually drew that inference. Greeno, 414 F.3d at 653. A plaintiff does not have to prove that his complaints were “literally ignored, ” but only that “the defendants' responses were so plainly inappropriate as to permit the inference that the defendants intentionally or recklessly disregarded his needs.” Hayes, 546 F.3d at 524 (quoting Sherrod v. Lingle, 223 F.3d 605, 611 (7th Cir. 2000)). Negligence, gross negligence, or even recklessness as that term is used in tort cases, is not enough. Id. at 653; Shockley v. Jones, 823, F.2d ...

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