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Callies v. Milow

United States District Court, E.D. Arkansas, Jonesboro Division

June 12, 2018

GARY CALLIES, PLAINTIFF
v.
SGT. MILOW; RONNIE COLEMAN; MANDY CHILDRESS, DEFENDANT

          RECOMMENDED DISPOSITION

         The following Recommended Disposition ("Recommendation") has been sent to United States Chief District Judge J. Leon Holmes. Any party may file written objections to this Recommendation. Objections must be specific and include the factual or legal basis for disagreeing with the Recommendation. An objection to a factual finding must specifically identify the finding of fact believed to be wrong and describe the evidence that supports that belief.

         An original and one copy of the objections must be received in the office of the United States District Clerk within fourteen (14) days of this Recommendation. If no objections are filed, Judge Holmes can adopt this Recommendation without independently reviewing all of the evidence in the record. By not objecting, you may also waive any right to appeal questions of fact.

         I. Introduction

         Plaintiff Gary Callies ("Callies"), proceeding pro se, contends that while detained in the Crittenden County Detention Center (“CCDC”), [1] he was denied constitutionally adequate medical care for injury to his left eye.[2] (Doc. 19). Callies has sued: (1) Sgt. Milow, a Sergeant at the CCDC (“Sgt. Milow”); (2) Ronnie Coleman, the jail administrator (“Administrator Coleman”); and (3) Mandy Childress, a nurse hired by Crittenden County to provide medical services to detainees (“Nurse Childress”). All Defendants are sued in their individual capacities.[3] Callies seeks compensatory damages for a permanent eye injury.[4]

         Defendants have filed a Motion for Summary Judgment, a Brief in Support, and a Statement of Undisputed Facts. (Docs. 36-38; 48). Callies has filed a Response in opposition. (Doc. 42).

         Before addressing the merits of Defendants' Motion, the Court will summarize the relevant undisputed facts giving rise to Callies's claims.[5]

         1. At all times relevant to Callies's claims, Administrator Coleman and Sgt. Milow were not medical professionals, and did not have any specific medical training to assist them in evaluating Callies's medical complaints. Similarly, neither of them provided non-emergency medical treatment to CCDC detainees. (Doc. 38-1 at ¶ 8).

         2. Nurse Childress's nursing duties included evaluating and treating detention center detainees for medical issues. (Doc. 38-3 at ¶ 2).

         3. In July and August of 2016, the relevant time period, the CCDC's policies and practices required prisoners and pre-trial detainees to submit written requests for medical treatment and file written complaints if they were dissatisfied with their medical care. All written medical requests were submitted by CCDC jail staff to the CCDC medical staff for review, response and action. The written medical request would then be filed in the “jail file” of the prisoner or pretrial detainee. (Doc. 38-1 at ¶ 6).

         4. Callies entered the CCDC or about May 17, 2016, and remained there through August 28, 2016. On July 22, 2016, he was working as a “Trustee” at a West Memphis park. While using a weed-eater, he struck a hill of fire ants, which “were flung all over” him. This caused him to knock his safety googles off. The still-running weed-eater then threw a rock that hit Callies in his left eye. (Doc. 19 at 6; Doc. 42 at ¶¶ 5-8).

         5. When he returned from his work assignment, Callies informed Sgt. Milow of his eye injury and the ant bites. Sgt. Milow provided ointment for the fire ant bites but did not provide any medical treatment for Callies' eye injury. (Doc. 42 at p. 3).

         6. On July 27, 2016, five days after the alleged eye injury occurred, Callies submitted a medical request form to Nurse Childress which stated the following:

We spoke briefly on this yesterday. I am experiencing trouble with a lot of pressure in my left eye that hurts and can not see out of it. I need glasses to see [. . .] but a [pair] of reading glasses will do! Thank you!

(Def.'s Exh. A-1, Doc. 38-2 at 9).

         7. Later on July 27, 2016, another CCDC employee, who is not named in this action, wrote the following on the bottom of Callies' request for medical attention:

Ptn states he was having pain in eye for extended period. Appt [with] Dr. Bryant 8-2-16. Ptn denies specific injury to eye.

(Def.'s Exh. A-1, Doc. 38-2 at 9; Affidavit of M. Childress, Doc. 38-3 at ¶ 3).

         8. On August 2, 2016, Callies was examined by Dr. G. Edward Bryant, an ophthalmologist in West Memphis, Arkansas. Dr. Bryant ...


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