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Travillion v. Allegheny County Bureau of Corrections

May 28, 2010

JAMAR TRAVILLION, PLAINTIFF,
v.
ALLEGHENY COUNTY BUREAU OF CORRECTIONS, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Cathy Bissoon United States Magistrate Judge

Judge Cercone

Magistrate Judge Bissoon

MAGISTRATE JUDGE'S REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

I. RECOMMENDATION

For the reasons that follow, it is respectfully recommended that the Motion for Summary Judgment filed by the Medical Defendants*fn1 (Doc. 149) be granted, and that the Motion for Summary Judgment filed by the Allegheny County Defendants*fn2 (Doc. 170) be denied. It is further recommended that Plaintiff's Motion Pursuant to Rule 56(f) (Doc. 176) and his cross-motion for summary judgment (Doc. 176) be denied.

II. REPORT

Plaintiff Jamar Travillion is an inmate confined at the State Correctional Institution at Rockview, located in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania. Travillion alleges that he was assaulted on July 2, 2005, while incarcerated at the Allegheny County Jail ("Jail"), and that this was done in retaliation for lawsuits he previously filed against the Jail and Jail personnel. Travillion also asserts that he was denied necessary medical treatment following this assault. Another assault is alleged to have occurred on July 17, 2006. Again, Plaintiff alleges that he was denied medical treatment following this assault. Plaintiff raises claims under the First, Fourth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution, and he makes state common law claims for assault and battery, conversion, medical malpractice and the intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Defendants have moved for summary judgment (Docs. 149, 170), and Plaintiff has responded to those motions (Docs. 173-175, 191-193). Plaintiff has also filed a motion pursuant to Rule of Civil Procedure 56(f) asserting that he is unable to respond to summary judgment without additional discovery (Doc. 176). Plaintiff, in the same document, also seeks summary judgment against Defendants (Doc. 176). All of the motions are ripe.

A. Legal Standard

A party=s burden in response to a well-pleaded motion for summary judgment is to present ". . . specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial." Fed. Rule Civ. Proc. 56(e) (emphasis added). If the non-moving party cannot so demonstrate the factual record will be taken as presented by the moving party and judgment will be entered as a matter of law. Matsushita Elec. Ind. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 587 (1986). An issue is genuine only if the evidence, viewed in the light most favorable to the non-moving party, is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the non-moving party. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242 (1986). The inquiry involves determining "whether the evidence presents a sufficient disagreement to require submission to a jury or whether it is so one-sided that one party must prevail as a matter of law." Id., at 251-52.

B. Underlying Facts

Plaintiff was a pre-trial detainee at the Allegheny County Jail on July 3, 2005, when he asserts that he was assaulted by several guards. Plaintiff was seen by a nurse employed by Allegheny Correctional Health Service, Inc., at 4:00 p.m. (Doc. 150-1, p. 55). The nurse noted that Plaintiff was in an "altercation" some 20 minutes prior to being seen, and that he complained of pain in his head and ribs (Id.). The nurse recommended that Plaintiff be sent to Mercy Hospital to rule out a possible broken rib and/or a concussion (Id.). Plaintiff was admitted to the emergency room at Mercy Hospital at 6:00 p.m. that same date, and records reflect that x-rays of his ribs and wrist were negative, and that CT scans of his head and abdomen were also negative (Doc. 3-1, pp. 23-24). Plaintiff was discharged from the emergency room with diagnoses of "scalp contusion with concussion, left chest wall contusion, right wrist contusion" (Id.). Plaintiff was instructed to take either acetaminophen or ibuprofen, and to use ice packs for his contusions (Doc. 150-1, pp. 57-59). Plaintiff was, in fact, provided ibuprofen for months following his return to prison, and his symptoms ultimately resolved.

The next incident occurred on July 17, 2006. Plaintiff had been transferred out of the Jail and into state custody, but was returned to the Jail for a sentencing proceeding. Plaintiff alleges that he was again assaulted by Jail guards, and that he was denied medical treatment following the assault which, he alleges, left him with cuts in several places and swelling on his face and head. The medical records reflect that Plaintiff was seen by a nurse at 1:00 a.m. on July 18, 2006 (Doc. 97-9, p. 1). Plaintiff, who had a criminal sentencing hearing the next morning, claimed he could not walk or breathe. The examining nurse noted two small abrasions on Plaintiff's leg, and a lump on the side of his head, but also noted a normal pulse, respiration and temperature (Id.). Plaintiff was given ibuprofen and told to see Dr. Patterson in the morning. Dr. Patterson ...


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