Wakefield v. Franklin County Jail et al
ORDER FOR SERVICE OF PROCESS on ALL INDIVIDUAL DEFENDANTS. The 1 COMPLAINT survives screening under 28 U.S.C. 1915A. COUNT 1 will proceed against ALL INDIVIDUAL DEFENDANTS, but this claim is DISMISSED with prejudice against FRANKLIN COUNTY JAIL. Al l state law claims in COUNT 2 are DISMISSED without prejudice pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1367(c)(2). Plaintiff's 14 Motion for Recruitment of Counsel and 15 Motion for Court Order are DENIED without prejudice. The Clerk's Office is DIRECTED to TERMINATE Defendant FRANKLIN COUNTY JAIL as a party in CM/ECF and ENTER the standard qualified protective order pursuant to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Signed by Judge J. Phil Gilbert on 5/18/2023. (jsy)
Case 3:22-cv-01768-JPG Document 16 Filed 05/18/23 Page 1 of 6 Page ID #53
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS
ERIC L. WAKEFIELD, #201900235,
FRANKLIN COUNTY JAIL,
and ZANE YOUNG,
Case No. 22-cv-01768-JPG
MEMORANDUM & ORDER
GILBERT, District Judge:
Plaintiff Eric Wakefield, an inmate at Franklin County Jail, brings this civil rights action
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. (Doc. 1, pp. 1-10). In the Complaint, 1 Plaintiff alleges that
This is one of three lawsuits Plaintiff filed to complain about his untreated head trauma or aneurysm. See
also Wakefield v. Franklin County Jail, et al., No. 21-cv-867-JPG (S.D. Ill. 2021); Wakefield v. Franklin
County Sheriff Dep’t, et al., No. 22-cv-1766-JPG (S.D. Ill. 2022). This is also one of six lawsuits that he
filed in this Court on August 3, 2022. See also Wakefield v. Christopher Police Dep’t, et al., No. 22-cv1764-JPG (S.D. Ill. 2022); Wakefield v. Franklin County Sheriff Dep’t, et al., No. 22-cv-1766-JPG (S.D.
Ill. 2022) (addressing untreated head injuries); Wakefield v. SIU Credit Union, et al., No. 22-cv-1767-NJR
(S.D. Ill. 2022); Wakefield v. District Attorney’s Office, et al., No. 22-cv-1769-DWD (S.D. Ill. 2022); and
Wakefield v. Franklin County Courts, et al., No. 22-cv-1772-JPG (S.D. Ill. 2022).
Case 3:22-cv-01768-JPG Document 16 Filed 05/18/23 Page 2 of 6 Page ID #54
Defendants ignored 200 grievances he filed to complain about the denial of medical care for a head
injury he sustained on September 26, 2019. (Id. at 6). He seeks monetary relief. (Id. at 7).
The Complaint is now before the Court for preliminary review under 28 U.S.C. § 1915A,
which requires the Court to screen prisoner complaints and filter out non-meritorious claims.
28 U.S.C. § 1915A(a). Any portion of the Complaint that is legally frivolous or malicious, fails
to state a claim for relief, or requests money damages from an immune defendant must be
dismissed. 28 U.S.C. § 1915A(b). At this juncture, the factual allegations are liberally construed.
Rodriguez v. Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir. 2009).
Plaintiff sets forth the following allegations in the Complaint (Doc. 1, pp. 2-6): On
September 26, 2019, Plaintiff was “bashed” in the head by his wife and her correctional officer
friends. He was taken into custody soon thereafter. All of the named defendants knew about his
head injuries on September 26, 2019, and he continued to complain about his injuries to everyone.
Since October 2019, Plaintiff has filed 200-plus grievances seeking medical care for his head
trauma at the Franklin County Jail. However, none of the defendants have taken action to secure
medical treatment for him. In response to his many grievances, the defendants just let him “sit and
suffer,” offering him no help, even when he bled for over seven hours on December 26, 2020. (Id.
at 4). Along with this statement of claim, Plaintiff provided a list of sixteen additional state statutes
and regulations the defendants allegedly violated. (Id. at 8).
The Court deems it appropriate to designate two claims in the pro se Complaint:
Fourteenth or Eighth Amendment claim against Defendants for
disregarding Plaintiff’s requests for medical treatment for his head injuries
at the Jail beginning September 26, 2019 (Doc. 1, pp. 2-6); and
Case 3:22-cv-01768-JPG Document 16 Filed 05/18/23 Page 3 of 6 Page ID #55
Miscellaneous violations of Illinois state law (see Doc. 1, p. 8).
Any other claims mentioned in the Complaint but not addressed herein are considered dismissed
without prejudice as inadequately pled under Twombly. 2
Plaintiff’s legal status as a pretrial detainee or convicted person dictates the legal standard
for his claim in Count 1. The Fourteenth Amendment’s objective unreasonableness standard
governs his claim of inadequate medical care for his serious head injuries, if he was a pretrial
detainee when his claim arose. See Miranda v. County of Lake, 900 F.3d 335 (7th Cir. 2018). The
Eighth Amendment deliberate indifference standard governs the claim, if he was a convicted
person. See Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97 (1976). His exact legal status can be sorted out during
discovery. Count 1 survives screening under the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment against all
individual defendants named in connection with this claim above.
However, Count 1 shall be dismissed with prejudice against Franklin County Jail because
the Jail is not a person subject to suit under § 1983. Plaintiff’s designation of this defendants likely
represents his attempt to hold the county liable for his injuries. See Monell v. Dep’t of Soc. Servs.
of New York, 436 U.S. 658, 690, 694 (1978). Municipal liability under § 1983 arises from the
execution of a government policy or custom that causes a constitutional injury. Id. But, Plaintiff
points to no policy or custom that caused the denial of his medical care. Accordingly, Franklin
County Jail shall be dismissed from this action.
Plaintiff’s sixteen other claims arise under Illinois state law. He lists state statutes and
regulations with no explanation or supporting allegations. Under some circumstances, the Court
See Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007) (an action fails to state a claim upon which
relief can be granted if it does not plead “enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face”).
Case 3:22-cv-01768-JPG Document 16 Filed 05/18/23 Page 4 of 6 Page ID #56
will exercise supplemental jurisdiction over state law claims brought as part of a § 1983 suit. See
28 U.S.C. § 1367. Section 1367(a) states, in pertinent part:
Except as provided in subsections (b) and (c) or as expressly provided otherwise by Federal
statute, in any civil action of which the district courts have original jurisdiction, the district
courts shall have supplemental jurisdiction over all other claims that are so related to claims
in the action within such original jurisdiction that they form part of the same case or
controversy under Article III of the United States Constitution.
See 28 U.S.C. § 1367(a). However, § 1367(c) authorizes a federal court to decline supplemental
jurisdiction over a claim under subsection (a), if it substantially predominates over the claim or
claims over which the district court has original jurisdiction. 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(2). The Court
declines to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over the sixteen state law claims in Count 2 pursuant
to § 1367(c)(2) because those claims would predominate over Count 1.
IT IS ORDERED that the COMPLAINT (Doc. 1) survives screening under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1915A, as follows: COUNT 1 will proceed against ALL INDIVIDUAL DEFENDANTS. This
claim is DISMISSED with prejudice against FRANKLIN COUNTY JAIL. All state law claims
in COUNT 2 are DISMISSED without prejudice pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(2). The Clerk’s
Office is DIRECTED to TERMINATE Defendant FRANKLIN COUNTY JAIL as a party
in CM/ECF and ENTER the standard qualified protective order pursuant to the Health
Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.
Plaintiff’s Motion for Recruitment of Counsel (Doc. 14) is DENIED without prejudice,
based on Plaintiff’s failure to demonstrate reasonable efforts to find counsel on his own 3 before
asking the Court to assist him and based on his failure to establish the need for an attorney to help
Plaintiff provided names of attorneys but did not indicate when he contacted them, what he requested of
them, and how they responded.
Case 3:22-cv-01768-JPG Document 16 Filed 05/18/23 Page 5 of 6 Page ID #57
him litigate his single claim in this case. 4
Plaintiff’s Motion for Court Order (Doc. 15) to compel production of a polygraph
examination report is DENIED without prejudice. Discovery has not yet commenced.
With respect to COUNT 1, the Clerk of Court shall prepare for ALL INDIVIDUAL
DEFENDANTS: (1) Form 5 (Notice of a Lawsuit and Request to Waive Service of a Summons),
and (2) Form 6 (Waiver of Service of Summons). The Clerk is DIRECTED to mail these forms,
a copy of the Complaint (Doc. 1), and this Memorandum and Order to each Defendant’s place of
employment as identified by Plaintiff. If a Defendant fails to sign and return the Waiver of Service
of Summons (Form 6) to the Clerk within 30 days from the date the forms were sent, the Clerk
shall take appropriate steps to effect formal service on that Defendant, and the Court will require
the Defendant to pay the full costs of formal service, as authorized by the Federal Rules of Civil
If a Defendant can no longer be found at the work address provided by Plaintiff, the
employer shall furnish the Clerk with that Defendant’s current work address, or, if not known, that
Defendant’s last-known address. This information shall be used only for sending the forms as
directed above or for formally effecting service. Any documentation of the address shall be
retained only by the Clerk. Address information shall not be maintained in the court file or
disclosed by the Clerk.
Defendants are ORDERED to timely file an appropriate responsive pleading to the
Complaint and shall not waive filing a reply pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1997e(g). Pursuant to
Plaintiff discloses some college education. Despite his medical impairment, Plaintiff has also
demonstrated his ability to prepare and file complaints, motions, and pleadings in numerous cases
(simultaneously) in this District. At this early stage, the Court declines to recruit counsel for Plaintiff. He
may renew his request for counsel by filing a separate motion if the case becomes too difficult (factually or
legally) to litigate.
Case 3:22-cv-01768-JPG Document 16 Filed 05/18/23 Page 6 of 6 Page ID #58
Administrative Order No. 244, Defendants should only respond to the issues stated in this
Merits Review Order.
If judgment is rendered against Plaintiff, and the judgment includes the payment of costs
under § 1915, Plaintiff will be required to pay the full amount of the costs. 28 U.S.C.
Finally, Plaintiff is ADVISED that he is under a continuing obligation to keep the Clerk of
Court and each opposing party informed of any change in his address; the Court will not
independently investigate his whereabouts. This shall be done in writing and not later than 7 days
after a transfer or other change in address occurs. Failure to comply with this order will cause a
delay in the transmission of court documents and may result in dismissal of this action for want of
prosecution. See FED. R. CIV. P. 41(b).
IT IS SO ORDERED.
s/ J. Phil Gilbert
J. PHIL GILBERT
United States District Judge
Notice to Plaintiff
The Court will take the necessary steps to notify the appropriate defendant of your lawsuit
and serve the defendant with a copy of your Complaint. After service has been achieved, the
defendant will enter an appearance and file an Answer to your Complaint. It will likely take at
least 60 days from the date of this Order to receive the Answer, but it is entirely possible that it
will take 90 days or more. When all the defendants have filed Answers, the Court will enter a
Scheduling Order containing important information on deadlines, discovery, and procedures.
Plaintiff is advised to wait until counsel has appeared for the defendant before filing any motions,
to give the defendant notice and an opportunity to respond to those motions. Motions filed before
counsel for the defendant has filed an appearance will generally be denied as premature. Plaintiff
need not submit any evidence to the Court at this time, unless specifically directed to do so.
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