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Perry v. Furey

United States District Court, D. Connecticut

September 16, 2019

RICHARD FUREY, et al. Defendants.



         Preliminary Statement of the Case

         On October 15, 2018, Plaintiff, Dashawn Perry, a pro se inmate currently confined at the Osborn Correctional Institution (“Osborn”) in Somers, Connecticut, brought a civil action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 against five state Department of Correction officials (“Defendants”) for violating his Eighth Amendment protection against cruel and unusual punishment: Health Services Administrator Richard Furey, Dr. Cary Freston, Dr. Johnny Wright, Correction Officer Ayala, and Warden Gary Wright. Compl. (DE#1). Plaintiff claimed that Defendants acted with deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs, which stemmed from an ankle injury he sustained during recreation at Osborn. See Initial Review Order (DE#9) 4-5. This Court permitted his Eighth Amendment claim to proceed against Defendants in their individual capacities for damages and in their official capacities for injunctive relief. Id. at 5. Defendants answered the complaint on January 18, 2019. Answer (DE#18).

         On July 22, 2019, Plaintiff filed the instant motion for preliminary injunctive relief, claiming that Defendants are continuing to deprive him of “meaningful medical services and reasonable accommodation[s]” for his ankle injury, from which he endures ongoing pain. Mot. for Prelim. Inj. (DE#28) at 3. He seeks injunctive relief in the form of single-cell status, a bottom bunk assignment, pain medication, “in-cell feed back status, ” a “light duty work assignment, ” and “medical doctor attention.” Id. at 1-2. Defendants have filed an objection to the motion, contending that Plaintiff is receiving medical treatment for his injury and that he cannot establish either irreparable harm in the absence of such preliminary injunctive relief or a substantial likelihood of success on the merits of his Eighth Amendment claim. Defs.' Obj. to Pl.'s Mot. for Prelim. Inj. (“Defs.' Obj.”) (DE#29), 6-9. For the following reasons, Plaintiff's motion is DENIED.


         The Court hereby incorporates the facts giving rise to the Complaint as stated in the Initial Review Order:

On January 6, 2018, [Plaintiff] sustained a very painful injury to his left ankle while playing basketball during outside recreation at Osborn. Compl. ¶ 1. He immediately went to the medical unit at Osborn seeking treatment. Id. at ¶¶ 1-2. There, he was evaluated by nursing staff who refused to divulge their names to [Plaintiff]. Id. at ¶ 2. [Plaintiff] requested medication to alleviate the pain he was experiencing along with an x-ray, an appointment with a physician, and a bottom-bunk pass, but the nursing staff denied his requests. Id. at ¶¶ 2-3.
[Plaintiff] returned to his housing unit and wrote a request to Administrator Furey, but Furey did not reply. Compl. ¶ 3. Several days later, [Plaintiff] saw Furey in one of the hallways at Osborn, told him about his painful condition, and asked him about his failure to respond to the request he had written to him. Id. Furey responded, “Too bad, you should [not] have . . . come to prison, ” and then walked away. Id.
[Plaintiff] continued to write requests to correction officers, counselors, and medical personnel about his condition, but none of them responded. Compl. ¶ 4. After waiting nearly a month for treatment, [Plaintiff] was called to the medical unit and evaluated by Dr. Freston. Id. at ¶ 5. Freston “did nothing” for [Plaintiff]'s pain, but he ordered an x-ray and consultation at the UConn Health Center. Id. Meanwhile, [Plaintiff] was forced to climb up and down his bunk with the painful ankle injury. Id.
While at the UConn Health Center, a physician provided [Plaintiff] with a treatment plan, but Dr. Freston and Administrator Furey failed to ensure that the treatment plan was followed by medical staff at Osborn. Compl. ¶ 6. [Plaintiff] wrote another formal request to Furey on February 26, 2018. Id. at ¶ 7. Furey responded on March 13, stating that [Plaintiff] had a medical appointment scheduled with Dr. Wright. Id. However, Dr. Wright told [Plaintiff] that he had to submit a formal request before any evaluation. Id. [Plaintiff] complied, but he never received an appointment with Dr. Wright or even a reply to the formal request. Id. Several months later, Furey finally responded to one of [Plaintiff]'s requests, stating that [Plaintiff] had an appointment scheduled in one week to be evaluated by Dr. Wright. Id. at ¶ 8.
On April 11, 2018, [Plaintiff] was called to the medical unit for an appointment with Dr. Wright. Compl. ¶ 9. While he was waiting in the medical unit holding area, another inmate asked [Plaintiff] if he could take his vital signs, but [Plaintiff] refused, stating that he was there to see Dr. Wright and that his vital signs were confidential. Id. The inmate insisted that he wanted to take [Plaintiff]'s vital signs, but [Plaintiff] adamantly refused. Id. Correction Officer Ayala then interfered and told [Plaintiff] that, if he did not let the inmate take his vital signs, he would write him a disciplinary report. Id. [Plaintiff] still refused, and Ayala then sent him back to his housing unit. Id. [Plaintiff] was unable to see Dr. Wright. Id. at ¶ 10.
[Plaintiff] filed a formal complaint to Warden Wright explaining that Ayala had refused to allow him to see the medical doctor at Osborn, but Warden Wright did not respond. Compl. ¶ 10. [Plaintiff] then followed up an administrative remedy/grievance, which Warden Wright rejected on the ground that [Plaintiff] never filed an inmate request form. Id. [Plaintiff] did, however, file a request for submitting his grievance. Id. [Plaintiff] later spoke with Warden Wright as he toured his housing unit. Id. Wright told him, “Nothing goes up the chain of command without [my] approval.” Id. [Plaintiff] told Wright that he believed Wright was obstructing the administrative remedy process, to which Wright replied, “Sue me, I don't care.” Id.

Initial Review Order at 2-4.

         In support of his motion, Plaintiff states he requires pain medication, further medical evaluation, a bottom bunk pass, in-cell feed back status, a single cell, and a light duty work assignment. He contends that Defendants have not taken any corrective action in response to his injury or limited ...

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