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Hankins v. Dunkle

United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division

February 4, 2015

DAVID H. DUNKLE, MD., and GERALD B. MADER, Defendants.



This matter is before the Court on Defendants David H. Dunkle M.D.'s ("Dr. Dunkle") and Gerald B. Mader's (Dr. Mader") (collectively, "Defendants") Motion for Summary Judgment (Filing No. 98). What remains for resolution in this civil action is Plaintiff Jonathon Michael Hankins' ("Mr. Hankins") claim that Defendants were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs while he was housed at the Johnson County Jail in violation of the due process clause. Specifically, the claims at issue are whether Defendants were deliberately indifferent to Mr. Hankins' elevated Dilantin level and whether they are liable under Indiana's tort of intentional infliction of emotional distress. See Filing No. 21 at p. 3, and Filing Nos. 125 and 157. All other claims have been dismissed or severed. See Filing No. 177.

After fully considering all of the briefing associated with this Motion, the Court finds that the Defendants' motion for Summary Judgment must be GRANTED on Mr. Hankins' Dilantin claim.[1] The intentional infliction of emotional distress claim is dismissed without prejudice for lack of jurisdiction.

As an initial matter, the Court must address procedural defects in some of Mr. Hankins' pro se filings. In the course of briefing the Motion for Summary Judgment Mr. Hankins has sought to add additional claims. For example, he asserts that the Defendants were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs by allowing him to be placed in a psychiatric medical isolation observation cell, failing to correct the inhumane conditions in that cell, and by ignoring his excessive weight loss and screams for help. These claims are outside the scope of this litigation and the scope of the claims shall not be extended at this time in the proceeding. See Filing No. 21 at p. 3, and Filing No. 125 and 157. In addition, Mr. Hankins repeatedly refers to the Defendants' actions as criminal in nature. But this label does not promote his claims. Mr. Hankins cannot use this civil action to commence criminal charges against the Defendants. Only the United States may commence federal criminal charges and a private individual has no right to compel such a prosecution. See Ragsdale v. Turnock, 941 F.2d 501, 509 (7th Cir. 1991) (private persons generally have no right to enforce criminal statutes or to sue under them unless the statute also creates a private right of action) (Posner, J., concurring), cert denied, 502 U.S. 1035 (1992).


A motion for summary judgment asks that the Court find that a trial based on the uncontroverted and admissible evidence is unnecessary because, as a matter of law, it would conclude in the moving party's favor. See Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56. To survive a motion for summary judgment, the non-moving party must set forth specific, admissible evidence showing that there is a material issue for trial. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1986). The substantive law identifies which facts are material. See Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). A dispute about a material fact is genuine only "if the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party." Id. If no reasonable jury could find for the non-moving party, then there is no "genuine" dispute. Scott v. Harris, 550 U.S. 372 (2007). The key inquiry is whether admissible evidence exists to support a plaintiff's claims, not the weight or credibility of that evidence, both of which are assessments reserved to the trier of fact. See Schacht v. Wis. Dep't of Corrections, 175 F.3d 497, 504 (7th Cir. 1999). When evaluating this inquiry, the court must give the non-moving party the benefit of all reasonable inferences from the evidence submitted and resolve "any doubt as to the existence of a genuine issue for trial... against the moving party." Celotex, 477 U.S. at 330.

Whether a party asserts that a fact is undisputed or genuinely disputed, the party must support the asserted fact by citing to particular parts of the record, including depositions, documents, or affidavits. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(c)(1)(A). A party can also support a fact by showing that the materials cited do not establish the absence or presence of a genuine dispute or that the adverse party cannot produce admissible evidence to support the fact. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(c)(1)(B). Affidavits or declarations must be made on personal knowledge, set out facts that would be admissible in evidence, and show that the affiant is competent to testify on matters stated. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(c)(4). Failure to properly support a fact in opposition to a movant's factual assertion can result in the movant's fact being considered undisputed, and potentially the grant of summary judgment. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(e).

Local Rule 56-1(b) requires a brief in opposition to a motion for summary judgment to include a section labeled "Statement of Material Facts in Dispute", which responds to the movant's asserted material facts by identifying the potentially determinative facts and factual disputes which the non-moving party contends demonstrate that there is a dispute of fact precluding summary judgment. These facts must be supported by appropriate citations to admissible evidence. See 56-1(e); Edward E. Gillen Co. v. City of Lake Forest, 3 F.3d 192, 196 (7th Cir. 1993). The court need only consider the cited materials, Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(c)(3), and the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals has "repeatedly assured the district courts that they are not required to scour every inch of the record for evidence that is potentially relevant to the summary judgment motion before them." Johnson v. Cambridge Indus., 325 F.3d 892, 898 (7th Cir. 2003).


Applying the standards set forth above, the undisputed material facts are as follows:

On May 10 or 11, 2010, Mr. Hankins was booked into the Johnson County Jail as a pretrial detainee on one count of dealing a schedule 2 substance, two counts of child molestation, and one count of possessing paraphernalia. It was noted that Mr. Hankins was currently taking several medications, including Dilantin. Dilantin is an anti-epileptic drug. Mr. Hankins states that at some point during the cataloging of his medication the medical staff negligently misread the prescription bottle and the amount of Dilantin prescribed. The correct amount was 100 mg. twice daily.[2]

On May 14, 2010, Mr. Hankins was noted by the nursing staff to have nausea, and Dr. Mader ordered Phenergan.

On May 16, 2010, as a result of Mr. Hankins' nausea and vomiting, he was transferred to the Johnson County Memorial Hospital, where Mr. Hankins reported he was currently detoxing. Mr. Hankins was evaluated by emergency physician Michael J. Welsh, M.D., and discharged to the Johnson County Jail with prescriptions of Colace and OxyContin.

Dr. Dunkle and Dr. Mader are licensed physicians in the State of Indiana who provide medical care to inmates at the Johnson County Jail. On May 21, 2010, it was noted that Mr. Hankins was banging his head on the sink in his cell, and was therefore moved to a padded cell. Dr. Dunkle and Dr. Mader were informed of Mr. Hankins' condition, and Dr. Mader ordered continued observation. On May 27, 2013, ...

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