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Hayness v. Jaimet

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

October 28, 2019

BRIAN HAYNES, Plaintiff,



         Plaintiff Brian Haynes, an inmate of the Illinois Department of Corrections (“IDOC”) who is currently incarcerated at Pinckneyville Correctional Center (“Pinckneyville”), brings this action for deprivations of his constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In the Complaint, Plaintiff alleges Defendants were deliberately indifferent in treating his ankle injury, in violation of the Eighth Amendment. Plaintiff seeks monetary damages.

         This 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).

         The Complaint

         In his Complaint, Plaintiff makes the following allegations: On March 26, 2018, Plaintiff injured his right ankle playing basketball on the yard. (Doc. 1, p. 7). He was escorted to the healthcare unit in a wheelchair because he could not put pressure on the leg. Plaintiff was examined by Jane Doe Nurse at 9:15 a.m.; she put Plaintiff in to see Dr. B. Blum at 10:00 a.m. Dr. Blum examined Plaintiff's ankle and diagnosed him with an ankle sprain. Plaintiff informed Dr. Blum that he thought it was more than a sprain because he heard a loud pop. Dr. Blum scheduled Plaintiff for an x-ray. The attached medical records indicate that Plaintiff was directed to elevate and ice the ankle and was provided with an ace wrap. (Id. at pp. 17-18). He also was scheduled for a follow-up in two weeks. (Id.).

         On April 10, 2018, Plaintiff received the results of the x-ray from Jane Doe Nurse. (Id. at pp. 7-8). She informed Plaintiff that he had no fractures or dislocations. According to the attached report, the soft tissue was also unremarkable. (Id. at p. 13). Plaintiff informed her that he was still in pain and had a lump on his heel. The nurse scheduled Plaintiff for a follow-up with the doctor. On May 19, 2018, Plaintiff saw John Doe Physician for the pain and lump in his ankle. John Doe Physician had Plaintiff wiggle his ankle and informed him there was nothing wrong with him. Plaintiff requested an MRI but John Doe Physician refused. (Id.). The medical records indicate he was prescribed Tylenol for thirty days. (Id. at p. 19).

         On May 26, 2018, Plaintiff filed an emergency grievance regarding his ankle pain. Warden Jaimet received the emergency grievance on May 31, 2018, but found it not to be an emergency and returned it to Plaintiff. (Doc. 1, p. 8). Plaintiff filed the grievance through the normal grievance process.

         On August 20, 2018, Plaintiff put in another sick call because he was still in pain and had the lump on his ankle. (Doc. 1, p. 9). Jane Doe Nurse referred Plaintiff to the nurse practitioner. On August 28, 2018, Plaintiff saw the nurse practitioner who noted a deformity in the ankle and scheduled Plaintiff for an ultrasound. (Id. at p. 21). The ultrasound showed tendinosis of the Achilles tendon and possible partial tear. A follow-up MRI confirmed a partial tear. (Id. at pp. 9-10, 22, 25). Plaintiff was sent to an orthopedic surgeon, and the tear was surgically repaired on February 11, 2019. (Id. at p. 10, 29-30).


         Based on the allegations in the Complaint, the Court finds it convenient to designate the following single count in this pro se action:

Count 1:Karen Jaimet, Dr. B. Blum, Jane Doe Nurse, and John Doe Physician were deliberately indifferent in the treatment of Plaintiff's ankle injury in violation of the Eighth Amendment.

         The 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 Complaint but not addressed in this Order should be considered dismissed without prejudice as inadequately pled under the Twombly pleading standard.[1]

         Plaintiff fails to state a claim against Karen Jaimet. In order to be held individually liable, a defendant must be “personally responsible for the deprivation of a constitutional right.” Sanville v. McCaughtry, 266 F.3d 724, 740 (7th Cir. 2001) (quoting Chavez v. Ill. State Police, 251 F.3d 612, 651 (7th Cir. 2001)). The simple denial or mishandling of a grievance does not state a claim. Owens v. Hinsley, 635 F.3d 950, 953 (7th Cir. 2011) (“[T]he alleged mishandling of [a prisoner's] grievance by persons who otherwise did not cause or participate in the underlying conduct states no claim.”). Nothing in the Complaint indicates that Jaimet was personally responsible for providing Plaintiff with medical care. He only alleges that Jaimet deemed his grievance a non-emergency, which does not constitute deliberate indifference.

         Nor are there any allegations to suggest that the other Defendants were deliberately indifferent in treating Plaintiff's ankle. Plaintiff alleges that Jane Doe Nurse, specifically the nurse he saw on March 26, 2018, examined him and referred him to the doctor. He acknowledges in his Complaint that he saw Dr. Blum within an hour of reporting to the healthcare unit. (Docs. 1, pp. 2, 7). This does not amount to deliberate indifference as there was no delay in ...

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