Hoskins v. Swisher et al
ORDER denying 15 Motion for Reconsideration. For the reasons stated in the attached Memorandum & Order, Plaintiff's motion for reconsideration is DENIED. The Clerk of Court shall correct the docket sheet to reflect the correct spellings and full names of Defendants in accordance with footnote 1. Signed by Magistrate Judge Gilbert C. Sison on 9/11/2020. (kll)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS
ALEXANDER RODMAN, and
Cause No. 3:20-cv-00522-GCS
The Clerk of Court shall correct the names of Defendants, with exception of Defendants Charles
Swisher and Michael Bailey, to reflect the full names and proper spellings as listed in the case caption.
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MEMORANDUM & ORDER
SISON, Magistrate Judge:
On June 3, 2020, Plaintiff Joshua Hoskins, an inmate in the custody of the Illinois
Department of Corrections, filed suit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging that
Defendants violated his constitutional rights while he was incarcerated at Pinckneyville
Correctional Center. The Court conducted a threshold review of Plaintiff’s complaint
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A. The June 15, 2020 order allowed three of Plaintiff’s claims
to proceed, but Count 3, a deliberate indifference to medical needs claim against all
Defendants, was dismissed for failure to state a claim. By motion dated June 22, 2020,
Hoskins asks the Court to reconsider the dismissal of Count 3.
Relevant to Count 3, Hoskins alleges that between June 5, 2019, and April 30, 2020,
he was denied access to showers, hygiene items, bedding, underwear, and sick call. He
claims that he spoke to each Defendant and that they all told him he was being denied
access in retaliation for filing grievances. The lack of access described in the complaint
allegedly caused Hoskins to have skin rashes and issues, mental health issues, and
bleeding gums. The Court dismissed his claim regarding denial of access to sick call
because Hoskins’s complaint does not allege that Defendants were aware of his injuries
at the time they denied him access to sick call, nor does it describe whether the denial of
access to sick call occurred before or after Hoskins developed his injuries.
Hoskins argues in his motion for reconsideration that information that will come
out in discovery will provide the details that his complaint does not. The Federal Rules
of Civil Procedure do not expressly recognize motions to reconsider. Rule 54(b), however,
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allows district courts to revisit “any order or other decision . . . that adjudicates fewer
than all the claims” in an action and to revise it at any point before the entry of judgment.
FED. R. CIV. PROC. 54(b). See also Moses H. Cone Memorial Hosp. v. Mercury Const. Corp., 460
U.S. 1, 12 (1983)(noting that any “order short of a final decree is subject to reopening at
the discretion of the district judge.”).
Motions to reconsider interlocutory orders under this rule “serve a limited
function: to correct manifest errors of law or fact or to present newly discovered
evidence.” Caisse Nationale de Credit Agricole v. CBI Indus., Inc., 90 F.3d 1264, 1269 (7th Cir.
1996)(internal quotations and citations omitted). “A manifest error is not demonstrated
by the disappointment of the losing party. It is the wholesale disregard, misapplication,
or failure to recognize controlling precedent.” Oto v. Metro. Life Ins. Co., 224 F.3d 601, 606
(7th Cir. 2000)(internal quotations and citation omitted). Because the standards for
reconsideration are exacting, the Seventh Circuit has stressed that appropriate issues for
reconsideration “rarely arise.” Bank of Waunakee v. Rochester Cheese Sales, Inc., 906 F.2d
1185, 1191 (7th Cir. 1990)(internal quotations and citation omitted).
The Eighth Amendment prohibits cruel and unusual punishments, and the
deliberate indifference to the “serious medical needs of a prisoner constitutes the
unnecessary and wanton infliction of pain forbidden by the Constitution.” Rodriguez v.
Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 828 (7th Cir. 2009). A prisoner is entitled to
“reasonable measures to meet a substantial risk of serious harm”—not to demand specific
care. Forbes v. Edgar, 112 F.3d 262, 267 (7th Cir. 1997). In order to prevail on a claim of
deliberate indifference, a prisoner who brings an Eighth Amendment challenge of
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constitutionally deficient medical care must satisfy a two-part test. See Arnett v. Webster,
658 F.3d 742, 750 (7th Cir. 2011)(citation omitted). The first consideration is whether the
prisoner has an “objectively serious medical condition.” Arnett, 658 F.3d at 750. Accord
Greeno v. Daley, 414 F.3d 645, 653 (7th Cir. 2005). Prevailing on the subjective prong
requires a prisoner to show that a prison official has subjective knowledge of—and then
disregards—an excessive risk to inmate health. See Greeno, 414 F.3d at 653. The plaintiff
need not show the individual “literally ignored” his complaint, but that the individual
was aware of the condition and either knowingly or recklessly disregarded it. Hayes v.
Snyder, 546 F.3d 516, 524 (7th Cir. 2008).
Here, Hoskins does not demonstrate that the Court made a manifest error of law
or of fact in dismissing Count 3. The undersigned agrees with the conclusion in the
Court’s threshold order that Hoskins does not plead sufficient facts to establish the
subjective prong of a deliberate indifference claim. He does not allege that Defendants
had subjective knowledge of a risk to his health then disregarded it, nor does he allege
whether he had a medical need at the time he was denied access to sick call or whether
his medical issues did not develop until after the denial. Given that the scope of review
is limited to the search for a manifest error, the Court finds that Hoskins does not carry
his burden of establishing such an error and will not reverse the dismissal of Count 3.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
by Judge Sison 2
GILBERT C. SISON
United States Magistrate Judge
Dated: September 11, 2020.
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