United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
AND ORDER DENYING THE PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY
JUDGMENT (DKT. NO. 21), GRANTING IN PART AND DEFERRING RULING
IN PART ON THE DEFENDANTS' MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT
(DKT. NO. 27), AND SETTING DEADLINES FOR PARTIES TO TAKE
Pamela Pepper United States District Judge
Timothy Steven Doss, who is representing himself, is
incarcerated at Green Bay Correctional Institution (GBCI). On
June 24, 2015, the court entered an order allowing the
plaintiff to proceed on deliberate indifference and excessive
force claims. Dkt. No. 10. On December 28, 2015, the
plaintiff filed a motion for summary judgment. Dkt. No. 21.
On January 8, 2016, the defendants filed a motion for summary
judgment. Dkt. No. 27. Both motions are now fully briefed.
The court will deny the plaintiff's motion for summary
judgment, grant the defendants' motion in part, defer
ruling on one defendant's motion, and set deadlines for
the parties to take further action.
the events involved in this case, the plaintiff was a
prisoner incarcerated at Green Bay Correctional Institution
(GBCI). He is suing former and current staff members at GBCI.
At the times relevant to this lawsuit, defendant Brian Foster
was the warden (Dkt. No. 54 ¶2); defendants Cathy
Francois, Ryan Baumann and Jay VanLanen were supervisors in
the Program Segregation building (Id. at ¶3);
defendant Jeananne Zwiers was the health services manager
(titled Nursing Supervisor 2) (Id. at ¶4);
defendants Onie Walker and Eric Sweetman were correctional
sergeants (Id. at ¶5); and defendant Alan Potts
was a correctional officer (Id.).
plaintiff suffers from sickle cell anemia, which is a
condition that causes red blood cells to form into a crescent
shape, like a sickle. Dkt. No. 51 ¶18. The sickle-shaped
red blood cells break apart easily, causing anemia.
Id. Sickle red blood cells live only ten to twenty
days instead of the normal 120 days. Id. The damaged
sickle red blood cells also clump together and stick to the
walls of blood vessels, blocking blood flow. Id.
This can cause severe pain and permanent damage to the brain,
heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, bones and spleen. Id.
with sickle cell disease may develop severe pain anywhere in
their body, and severe pain is an emergency condition called
sickle cell crisis. Id. ¶19. Treatment of
sickle cell crisis may include: opioid pain medications,
anti-inflammatory medications, antibiotics for infection,
oxygen, and/or intravenous or oral fluids. Id.
plaintiff was transferred to GBCI on January 3, 2014, and
sickle cell disease was listed as a significant illness on
his transfer screening form. Id. ¶21. Dr.
Sauvey (not a defendant), a physician at GBCI, implemented a
plan of care with Dr. Warren (not a defendant), a
hematologist at Green Bay Oncology who treats the plaintiff.
Id. ¶22. Dr. Warren outlined the
plaintiff's plan of care after each of the
plaintiff's appointments. Id. ¶23. Although
correctional officers were not given written documents from
the plaintiff's medical files, they were advised via a
posted handwritten note that the plaintiff has a significant
chronic condition and they should contact health services
immediately with any medical complaints from the plaintiff.
Id. ¶23, 25.
April 6, 2014
April 6, 2014, the plaintiff was transported to the
emergency room following an episode of sickle cell crisis.
Id. ¶37, 38. When an inmate is transported to
an off-site hospital for medical treatment, GBCI provides
supervision of the inmate (called a “vigil”).
Id. ¶31. Staff assigned to supervise an inmate
during a vigil provide constant monitoring of the inmate at
all times. Id. A minimum of two security staff are
assigned for supervision when the inmate is in a segregated
status (regardless of classification) or when an inmate has a
maximum classification. Id.
addition, security restraints may be applied when necessary
to protect staff, hospital personnel, and the public.
Id. ¶36. A security supervisor must authorize
increased restraints, although when time does not permit a
correctional officer to obtain prior approval, a supervisor
may approve their use after the restraints are applied.
Id. One form of increased restraint is the Bandit,
an electronic control device that is a
commercially-manufactured tool approved to be used by trained
staff. Id. ¶35. The Bandit is attached to the
inmate with Velcro straps. Id. Correctional staff
are trained to place the device on an inmate's forearm or
authorized the placement of the Bandit on the plaintiff's
leg for the April 6 transport. Id. ¶38.
Sweetman states that, as he tried to place the Bandit on the
plaintiff's bare leg, the plaintiff pulled his leg away.
Id. ¶39. Sweetman ordered him not to pull his
leg away, and the plaintiff asked to speak with a supervisor.
Id. VanLanen arrived, and informed Sweetman that the
Bandit should be placed over the plaintiff's pants,
rather than on his bare skin. Id. ¶40. Sweetman
states that he had been trained to place the Bandit on the
bare leg, but he complied with VanLanen's instructions.
plaintiff states that Sweetman became angry and said to the
plaintiff, “Next time, do what I say and talk to a
white shirt later.” Id. ¶41. Sweetman
disputes this characterization. Id. He states that
he told the plaintiff that he should have spoken to VanLanen
prior to the plaintiff's departure to the hospital given
that he would be checked by VanLanen at that time anyway, so
there was no reason for the plaintiff to disobey
Sweetman's direct order not to pull his leg away.
Id. He also told the plaintiff that if he failed to
follow direct orders, he could be written up for a conduct
plaintiff states that Sweetman was angry that the plaintiff
had talked to VanLanen, so Sweetman over-tightened the Bandit
straps. Dkt. No. 54 ¶35. The plaintiff complained the
Bandit straps were too tight. Dkt. No. 51 ¶42. Sweetman
states the health services nurse and VanLanen both checked
the straps and determined that Sweetman had properly applied
them. Id. When the plaintiff mentioned to VanLanen
that the straps were tight, VanLanen told him that they felt
tight because the plaintiff was kneeling, and they would not
feel tight once he stood up. Id. ¶44. Once he
stood up, the plaintiff did not complain to VanLanen about
the straps, nor did the plaintiff ever complain that the
straps were causing him pain. Id. Sweetman explains
that he would not have been at liberty to loosen the straps
without permission from a security supervisor. Id.
July 5, 2014
plaintiff alleges that on July 5, 2014, at about 8:30 a.m. to
8:45 a.m., he began to experience excruciating pain, nausea,
dizziness, and feeling as if he was about to pass out. Dkt.
No. 54 ¶23. The plaintiff states that he recognized the
symptoms as on-coming sickle cell crisis. Id. In
line with his healthcare plan, the plaintiff contacted a
correctional officer via his cell's intercom system and
asked that the officer notify health care services staff.
plaintiff states that Officer Vang (not a defendant) answered
the call at 9:00 a.m. and noted in the logbook “sickle
cell hurts bad.” Id. According to the
plaintiff, Vang then notified Sweetman, and indicated in the
logbook that he'd done so. Id.
to the plaintiff, when an inmate reports a medical emergency
via the cell intercom, the correctional officer answering the
call is to notify the staff member assigned to the cell
range, who should investigate the nature of the medical
emergency. Id. If a medical emergency is confirmed,
the staff member should notify the sergeant and remain at the
cell to monitor the situation. Id. The sergeant then
should notify the line supervisor and, if necessary, health
services staff. Id.
one arrived and his condition worsened, the plaintiff
indicates that he informed another inmate (Dennis Mix) that
he felt faint, and he asked the inmate to press his emergency
call button. Id. The plaintiff again reported that
he was having difficulties at about 9:15 a.m. Id.
The plaintiff then became dizzy and fell unconscious, hitting
his head on the wall behind him. Id. Sweetman never
reported to the plaintiff's cell to follow up on the
to another inmate, Potts arrived at the plaintiff's cell
at about 11:15 a.m. to distribute meal trays to inmates.
Id. The inmate told the plaintiff that Potts saw him
lying on the floor but he did not get help. Id.
Instead, Potts taunted the plaintiff, and when he received no