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Man loses appeal of suit against sheriff, jail medical staff

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A man who was held in Delaware County jail for nine days before he was released because no charges were filed sued the county sheriff and jail medical staff alleging indifference to his serious medical condition. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the grant of summary judgment in favor of the defendants.

Shane Holloway, who has Klippel-Trenaunay Syndrome, which causes chronic body pain, was arrested Sept. 29, 2009, on suspicion of dealing drugs. A master commissioner informed Holloway of the probable cause determination and ordered that Holloway be released by 9 a.m. Oct. 7 if the prosecutor didn’t file formal charges. During his time in jail, the medical staff did not give him Oxycontin, which he took to manage pain, but instead prescribed Tylenol and ibuprofen.

Holloway was released on Oct. 7 after charges weren’t filed. He filed his lawsuit against the county sheriff, Dr. Nadir Al-Shami and two nurses claiming they were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs. While in jail, he only mentioned he was in pain once to the medical staff, although he later said he was in pain the entire time but kept quiet.

The District Court granted the defendants’ motions for summary judgment, finding Holloway did not show that an unconstitutional policy or custom resulted in a constitutional deprivation. Also, Holloway didn’t produce evidence to support an inference that the doctor or nurses were deliberately indifferent to his serious medical needs.

In Shane A. Holloway v. Delaware County Sheriff, in his official capacity, et al., 12-2592, the 7th Circuit found the length of Holloway’s detention did not violate the 14th Amendment and agreed that the sheriff didn’t act pursuant to an unconstitutional policy or custom. With regard to the medical staff, Holloway didn’t show any evidence that Al-Shami intended to cause Holloway pain or knew that the drugs he prescribed would be insufficient to alleviate Holloway’s symptoms. The judges also pointed out that the nurses could not prescribe medication on their own and didn’t act with deliberate indifference in following the doctor’s orders.

 

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  1. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  2. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  3. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  4. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  5. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

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