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Clark v. Djukic

United States District Court, N.D. Indiana, Hammond Division

September 25, 2017

WILLIAM B. CLARK, Plaintiff,



         Plaintiff William B. (“Billy”) Clark alleges that, after a traffic stop, he was forcibly catheterized against his will so that officers could obtain a urine sample. (DE # 1.) Clark sued those officers, Matthew Djukic (“Djukic”) and Damian Murks (“Murks”), as well as the Town of Schererville, Indiana (“the Town”), and Franciscan Alliance, Inc. (Id.)

         The matter is now before the court on a motion for summary judgment brought by defendants Djukic, Murks, and the Town (collectively, “the Town Defendants” or “defendants”). (DE # 46). Plaintiff filed a response to the motion (DE # 53) and defendants filed a reply brief (DE # 61). Accordingly, the motion is fully briefed and is ripe for ruling.

         I. BACKGROUND[1]

         On May 18, 2012, Schererville Police Officer Matthew Djukic was on patrol when he encountered plaintiff's vehicle. (DE # 47-1 at 2.) Djukic contends that he suspected the driver was either distracted or driving under the influence. (Id. at 5.) Djukic activated his lights, and plaintiff pulled over in response at 10:57 p.m. (Id. at 2, 6.) Djukic is a K-9 officer who is unable to transport persons following a traffic stop, so he made a report to dispatch, and, shortly thereafter, Officer Damian Murks arrived on scene. (Id. at 5-6, 8.)

         According to Djukic, plaintiff consented to a K-9 search of his vehicle. (Id. at 34.) Djukic asserts that he found marijuana residue in the vehicle. (Id. at 20.) Djukic then administered field sobriety tests and a Portable Breath Test. (Id. at 16, 25, 32.) Plaintiff registered a blood alcohol level of .11 on the test. (Id. at 25.) Plaintiff then consented to go to the hospital to provide bodily fluid samples. (DE # 54-1 at 3.)

         Murks transported plaintiff to the St. Margaret Mercy Hospital (the "hospital"), which was operated by defendant Franciscan Alliance. (DE # 47-1 at 20.) Plaintiff arrived at the hospital in handcuffs, where Djukic informed staff that plaintiff was at the hospital to provide bodily fluid samples. (DE ## 47-1 at 21; 47-2 at 4.) Initially, plaintiff's blood was drawn by a nurse with his consent. (DE ## 1 ¶35; 54-1 at 6.) Following the blood test, plaintiff consented to a urine screen test. (DE # 54-1 at 7.) It is uncontested that plaintiff agreed to urinate into a cup, but was not able to voluntarily urinate before he was catheterized. (Id. at 7-9.) After that point, the witnesses' stories diverge, as each individual provides very different testimony regarding how plaintiff's urine was ultimately drawn through a catheter.

         According to plaintiff, his right hand was handcuffed to the corner of the bed while he attempted to urinate into the cup. (DE # 54-1 at 8.) After some time, Djukic instructed Nurse Tina Partain (“Partain”) to catheterize plaintiff to remove urine. (Id. at 9.) Plaintiff asserts that he did not consent to this. (Id. at 7.) He further testifies that Djukic held him down and was “laying on top of [him]” during the catheterization. (Id. at 2.)

         According to Partain, plaintiff's handcuffs were removed after he arrived at the hospital, before his blood and urine were drawn. (DE # 54-2 at 7.) She testifies that Dr. Bryan Swanson ordered her to catheterize plaintiff, after he was unable to urinate. (Id. at 30-31.) She then purportedly asked plaintiff if he wanted to be catheterized, to which he responded “Yeah, let's go.” (Id. at 31.) She testifies that she then inserted the catheter, while Djukic stood at the door approximately seven to eight feet away from her. (Id. at 37.) According to Partain, the catheter only remained inserted into plaintiff's urethra for a period of “seconds.” (Id. at 38.)

         Djukic claims that-not only did he not order the catheterization-it was actually plaintiff's idea to use the catheter. (DE # 47-1 at 30.) Djukic says plaintiff was not handcuffed to the bed, but he admits that he did hold plaintiff's shoulder during the process to avoid him from jumping during the insertion of the tube. (Id. at 30-31.) Djukic also asserts that plaintiff “just laid there” with the catheter inserted into his urethra for a period of time that “really seemed like a while.” (Id. at 31-32.)

         Meanwhile, Dr. Swanson has no recollection of anything from the evening in question and does not recall ordering a catheterization. (DE # 54-3 at 5-6.) He also reviewed the written order for the catheterization and noted that it was not in his handwriting. (Id. at 6-7.)

         Based on these events, plaintiff filed a complaint on May 9, 2014, alleging that Djukic, Murks, and the Town violated plaintiff's Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment rights (along with an additional claim against Franciscan Alliance, Inc.). (DE # 1.) The court previously denied a motion for summary judgment filed by Franciscan Alliance, Inc. (DE # 64.) The court now turns to the Town Defendants' motion for summary judgment. (DE # 46.)


         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56 requires the entry of summary judgment, after adequate time for discovery, against a party “who fails to make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an element essential to that party's case, and on which that party will bear the burden of proof at trial.” Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986). “[S]ummary judgment is appropriate-in fact, is mandated-where there are no disputed issues of material fact and the movant must prevail as a matter of law. In other words, the record must reveal that no reasonable jury could find for the non-moving party.” Dempsey v. Atchison, Topeka, & Santa Fe Ry. Co., 16 F.3d 832, 836 (7th Cir. 1994) (citations and quotation marks omitted).

         The moving party bears the initial burden of demonstrating that these requirements have been met. Carmichael v. Village of Palatine, Ill., 605 F.3d 451, 460 (7th Cir. 2010). “[T]he burden on the moving party may be discharged by ‘showing'-that is, pointing out to the district court-that there is an absence of evidence to support the nonmoving party's case.” Celotex, 477 U.S. at 325. Once the moving party has met his burden, the non-moving party must identify specific facts establishing that there is a genuine issue of fact for trial. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 252 (1986); Palmer v. Marion County, 327 F.3d 588, 595 (7th Cir. 2003) (citing Celotex, 477 U.S. at 324). In doing so, the non-moving party cannot rest on the pleadings alone, but must present fresh proof in support of its position. Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248; Donovan v. City of Milwaukee, 17 F.3d 944, 947 (7th Cir. 1994). In viewing the facts presented on a motion for summary judgment, the court must construe all facts in a light most favorable to the non-moving party and draw all reasonable inferences in favor of that party. Chmiel v. JC Penney Life Ins. Co., 158 F.3d 966 (7th Cir. 1998).


         The Town Defendants move for summary judgment on all claims against them. (DE # 46.) They enumerate seven arguments in support of their motion. (Id.) The court will discuss each of defendants' arguments, in turn.

         A. Claim Regarding the K-9 Search of Plaintiff's Vehicle

         Plaintiff alleges, in his complaint, that Officer Djukic's K-9 search of his vehicle constituted a violation of his Fourth Amendment Rights. (DE # 1 ¶ 58(a).) Defendants move for summary judgment on this claim, on the basis that plaintiff consented to the search. (DE # 47 at 12.) Alternatively, defendants argue that probable cause existed for the search. (Id. at 13.)

         In his response brief, plaintiff concedes that the search of his vehicle was either consensual or was otherwise not a violation of his rights under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (DE # 53 at 5.) Since plaintiff has abandoned his claim, the court will grant summary judgment on this claim.

         B. Claims Against Murks

         Defendants argue that Officer Murks is entitled to summary judgment because he was not personally involved in the alleged constitutional deprivations. (DE # 47 at 13.) Plaintiff agrees that Murks was not present during the catheterization.[2] (DE # 53 at 5.) Further, he concedes that Murks is entitled to summary ...

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