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Farris v. Kohlrus

United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Springfield Division

September 16, 2019

JACQUELINE FARRIS, Plaintiff,
v.
ERIC KOHLRUS et al., Defendants.

          OPINION

          TOM SCHANZLE-HASKINS UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         This matter comes before the Court on Plaintiff Jacqueline Farris' Renewed Motion for Leave to Take Depositions Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 30(a)(2) (d/e 150) (Motion). For the reasons set forth below, the Motion is ALLOWED in part.

         BACKGROUND

         Farris alleges that beginning on December 4, 2015, Defendant Illinois Logan Correctional Center (Logan) Correctional Officer Erik Kohlrus sexually assaulted Farris while she was an inmate at Logan, and ultimately Kohlrus raped her December 28, 2015. (The alleged sexual assaults and rape are hereinafter referred to collectively as the Rape). First Amended Complaint (d/e 14), ¶ 1. Kohlrus has been charged in state court with two counts of custodial sexual misconduct and the matter is pending. People v. Kohlrus, Logan County, Circuit Court No. 2018 CF 85.

         Farris brought this action against Kohlrus and 29 other defendants. One Defendant is the Illinois Department of Corrections (Department or IDOC). One individual Defendant is Amy Rude, L.C.S.W. Defendant Rude worked at Logan as an employee of Department contractor Wexford Health Sources, Inc. (Wexford). Farris voluntarily dismissed her claims against Rude. Text Order entered August 5, 2019. Another individual Defendant is Correctional Officer Laura Jackson. Jackson failed to respond when she was served. The Court entered a default judgment against Defendant Jackson but stayed the hearing to prove up damages until the litigation of the claims against the other Defendants is concluded. Order entered July 10, 2019 (d/e 144).

         The other 26 individual Defendants were employees of the Department. Defendant Christine Brannon was the Warden at Logan at the time of the Rape. Farris alleges that Defendant Clara Charron was Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Compliance Manager at Logan at the time of the Rape.[1] Farris also alleges that Defendant Norine Ashley was the Department's Psychologist, Mental Health Administrator, and PREA Compliance Manager at the time of the Rape. Defendant Lisa Johnson was the back-up to the PREA Compliance Manager. Farris alleges that Defendant Patrick Keane and Mike Funk were “Agency” PREA Coordinators.[2] Defendants Felipe Zavala and Alan Pasley were back-ups to the Agency PREA Coordinators. It is unclear from the Amended Complaint whether Ashley, Johnson, Keane, Funk, Zavala, or Pasley worked at Logan. Defendant Mark Delia was the Chief of Investigations and Intelligence at Logan. Defendant Jeff Gabor was a Case Investigator at Logan. Defendants Jasmin Woolfolk, Matthew Mitchey, James Barry, William Lemon, Alex Adams, A. Ahart, Sean Whelton, Jose Rivera, William Roberts, James Davis, Jennifer Billington, Zachary Sapp, and Dillion Kearney were Correctional Officers at Logan at the time of the Rape. Defendants Lieutenant Trina Snyder, Major Angela Locke, and Correctional Officer Travis Jones worked at the Decatur Correctional Center (Decatur) in May of 2016. Amended Complaint, ¶¶ 7-24. The Court refers to the individual Defendants other than Kohlrus, Rude, and Jackson as the “Department Individual Defendants.” Farris alleges several claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against Kohlrus and the Department Individual Defendants. Farris alleges that Kohlrus violated her rights to be free from cruel and unusual punishment and her rights to due process when he raped her (Counts I and II). Farris alleges that the Individual Defendants violated her rights by committing the following tortious acts:

. Defendants Brannon, Charron, Ashley, Johnson, Keane, Funk, Zavala, and Pasley (Department Policy Maker Defendants) deliberately established policies that caused Kohlrus to commit the Rape (Count III);
. Defendants Woolfolk, Mitchey, Barry, Lemon, Adams, Ahart, Whelton, Rivera, Roberts, Davis, Sapp, Billington, and Kearney (Department Correctional Officer Defendants) were deliberately indifferent to Kohlrus' actions, thereby allowing Kohlrus to commit the Rape (Count IV);
. Defendant Kohlrus and the Department Correctional Officer Defendants conspired to deprive Farris of her right by agreeing to assist Kohlrus in committing the Rape (Count V);
. Defendants Brannon, Charron, Ashley, Johnson, Gabor, and Delia deliberately established policies to deny Farris rights, without due process, to dispute her placement into isolation after the Rape and her denial of admission to Impact Incarceration Program (Boot Camp) (Count VI);
. Defendants Brannon, Charron, Ashley, Johnson, Gabor, Delia, Snyder, Locke, and Jones (Department Retaliation Defendants) retaliated against her for reporting the Rape. Some of the alleged retaliation occurred at Decatur after she was transferred there in May 2016 (Count VII).

First Amended Complaint, Counts I-VII.

         Farris also alleges that Defendant Illinois Department of Corrections (Department) violated her rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. § 12132, and the Rehabilitation Act, 29 U.S.C. § 794(a). Farris alleges that the Department violated her rights by not allowing her to participate in Boot Camp because she was a qualified person with a disability. First Amended Complaint, Counts VIII-IX.[3]

         Farris also alleges three state law claims against Kohlrus for assault, sexual abuse, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. First Amended Complaint, X-XII. All claims against Kohlrus are stayed pending the resolution of the criminal case against him. Text Order entered September 25, 2018.

         The Department and the Department Individual Defendants (collectively the Department Defendants) disclosed the parties and 20 additional individuals in their initial disclosures that one or more of the Department Defendants may use to support their defenses to Farris' claims. See Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(a)(1)(i). The Department Defendants listed 16 individuals with knowledge of Farris' claims and four ...


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