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Bonds v. Daniel Oldaker LPN

United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Louisville Division

May 4, 2017



          Joseph H. McKinley, Jr., Chief Judge.

         Plaintiff Todd Bonds filed a pro se complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (DN 1), which is before the Court for initial review pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). For the reasons that follow, a portion of the claims will be dismissed and the remaining claims will proceed.


         Plaintiff's complaint concerns his detention at the Luther Luckett Correctional Complex (LLCC). He is no longer incarcerated. He brings this action against the following seven Defendants in their individual and official capacities: (1) Nurse Daniel Oldaker, LPN, employed by Correct Care Solutions (CCS); (2) Nurse Shierra Brown, LPN, employed by CCS; (3) Nurse Dawn Patterson, RN, employed by CCS; (4) CCS, an agency that provides medical assistance to inmates at LLCC; (5) the Kentucky Department of Corrections (KDOC); (6) LLCC; and (7) LLCC Sgt. Shawn Carmin.

         In the complaint, Plaintiff alleges that on July 13, 2016, he was sent to LLCC's Restricted Housing Unit (RHU) “for allegedly using rude language to another unnamed corrections employee.” He reports that when an inmate is sent to that unit, a medical examination is performed by CCS nurses. Plaintiff claims that “it was widely known that [he] had high blood pressure while he was committed to the ‘DOC.'” He states that Defendant Nurse Brown took his vitals as part of the RHU procedures; that during the evaluation, his blood pressure “reached dangerous emergency levels of at least 225/123”; that he reported being “dizzy and weak” during that evaluation; and that Defendant Nurse Brown “purposely and maliciously record[ed] false readings that weren't significant such as 139/95.” Plaintiff reports that Defendant Nurse Brown wrote down the proper reading once Plaintiff called a prison guard for help and that the prison guard called for another nurse to assist Defendant Nurse Brown.

         Plaintiff states that Defendant Nurse Oldaker arrived on the scene, at which time Defendant Nurse Brown left. He claims that Defendant Nurse Oldaker “was obviously perturbed by the events that were unfolding and told [Plaintiff] that his blood pressure always runs high.” Plaintiff further claims that Defendant Nurse Oldaker told him that he “was ‘Super Nigger' and could handle the high blood pressure since his blood pressure was always high.” Plaintiff claims that he “was incensed at ‘Oldaker's' racial slur and lack of concern for his failing condition and asked, ‘What kind of sh-t is that to say to someone?'” He claims that Oldaker “replied with ‘Have a nice day' and left [him] ailing as [he] began to vomit and become weaker by the minute.” Plaintiff alleges that he “never received hospitalization during this time or any medicines to lower his blood pressure such as Nitro pills.”

         Plaintiff reports that based on the foregoing exchange with Oldaker, he was written up for a charge of using disrespectful language to an employee and “charged for the infraction initiated by” Defendant Sgt. Carmin. In the attached disciplinary report, Defendant Nurse Brown indicated that during the pre-segregation medical evaluation, she got three high readings and conferred with Defendant Oldaker about it; that Plaintiff told Nurse Brown that he was feeling dizzy and was not able to walk; that when Nurse Oldaker went to inform Plaintiff of his propensity to have a high blood pressure, Plaintiff told Nurse Oldaker to “‘f-ck off, you don't know what you are talking about!'”; and that Nurse Oldaker told Plaintiff “to have a good evening and left [Plaintiff] in the holding cell, requiring no further medical attention at this time.”

         In the complaint, Plaintiff additionally alleges that on July 28, 2016, upon walking into the medical department for an appointment, he noticed “a sign that had his and nine other inmates' names on the white board with a sign that read, ‘(these inmates) sign in for Foot Assessment.'” Plaintiff alleges that this was a violation of his “medical privacy rights ([] ‘HIPPA'); and his protected health information ([]'PHI') as anyone walking by this room with a clear window could; or anyone else in the waiting room could see what [Plaintiff] and the other inmates were there in the department for.” Plaintiff alleges that he “got teased by several gay men asking to rub his feet, nearly causing an altercation between [him] and one of the men.”

         Plaintiff reports that he filed a grievance about the alleged privacy violation and that Defendant Nurse Patterson disagreed with Plaintiff at the informal resolution stage. He claims that because of this grievance, he “began to receive retaliatory behavior from the medical employees, most notably ‘Brown' and “Patterson.'”

         Plaintiff claims that during a medical appointment on September 14, 2016, Defendant Nurse Brown, who “was very combative and supercilious” and who knew Plaintiff had a documented fear of needles at Blackburn Correctional Complex, was drawing Plaintiff's blood and then “stopped drawing his blood for no apparent reason, other than to stick him again with the needle to terrorize [him].” Plaintiff states that he “again filed a grievance as clearly this was retaliation by ‘Brown' as it was clear that [Plaintiff] was a marked man with an upcoming release due in late October/early November.” Plaintiff claims that Defendant Nurse Patterson called him to the medical department to discuss the grievance “and began to berate” him. Plaintiff states that he “immediately left the area fearing more retaliation from ‘Patterson' and/or her cohorts and henchmen.”

         Plaintiff alleges violations of the First Amendment (retaliation), the Eighth Amendment (deliberate indifference to his high blood pressure), the Fourteenth Amendment (denial of equal protection), and violation of HIPAA (privacy violation).

         As relief, Plaintiff seeks compensatory and punitive damages and various forms of injunctive relief.


         Because Plaintiff is proceeding in forma pauperis, the Court must review the complaint under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e). McGore v. Wrigglesworth, 114 F.3d 601, 608-09 (6th Cir. 1997), overruled on other grounds by Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S. 199 (2007). On review, a district court must dismiss a case at any time if it determines that the action is frivolous or malicious, fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from such relief. 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).

         A claim is legally frivolous when it lacks an arguable basis either in law or in fact. Neitzke v. Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). The trial court may, therefore, dismiss a claim as frivolous where it is based on an indisputably meritless legal ...

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