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Hancock v. Union County

United States District Court, D. Oregon

October 8, 2017

TYSON ARTHUR HANCOCK, Plaintiff,
v.
UNION COUNTY; SHERIFF BOYD RASMUSSEN; TAD BUTCHER; COMMANDER LORI LUCAS; JOHN DOE JAIL NURSE, Defendants.

          OPINION AND ORDER

          Ann Aiken United States District Judge

         Plaintiff, a former inmate at the Union County jail, filed suit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs and interference with his legal mail. Defendants now move for summary judgment on all claims under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56. For the reasons set forth below, defendants' motion is granted.

         BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff has Type I Diabetes. On April 1, 2015, plaintiff was booked into the Union County jail as a pretrial detainee on pending charges. Lucas Decl. at 2. His blood glucose levels were above normal, dropped over night, and began to rise the next day. Cary Decl. at 2. On the evening of April 2, 2015, plaintiff was given Humulin, a long-acting insulin, which staff administers in two 12-hour doses. Id. On April 3, 2015, medical staff started a Diabetic Flow Sheet to track plaintiffs blood glucose levels and insulin dosages. Id. at 3 & Ex. 2.

         During his approximate seven-week incarceration, plaintiff was permitted to self-administer Humulin, test his blood glucose levels at any time, and take regular-acting insulin between the Humulin doses. Id. Further, at plaintiffs request, he was provided with glucose tablets for emergencies and allowed a late-night sandwich to eat between the dinner and breakfast meals. Id.

         On May 1, 2015, plaintiff filed a grievance related to his diabetes medication. Lucas Decl. at 3. On May 6, 2015, the Sheriffs Office responded and recounted staff efforts to control plaintiffs blood glucose levels. Lucas Decl. at 3 & Ex. 8.

         On May 18, 2015, plaintiff was released from the jail. Id. at 2.

         On November 4, 2015, plaintiff again was booked into the Union County jail at approximately midnight. Lucas Decl. at 2. Medical staff tested his blood glucose level found it to be very high. From his home, Nurse Cary authorized an immediate insulin injection which normalized plaintiffs blood glucose levels. Cary Decl. at 3 & Ex. 3. Subsequently, plaintiffs blood glucose levels dropped further and he was given a sandwich. Id.

         Medical staff again prepared a Diabetic Flow Sheet to track plaintiffs blood glucose levels and insulin dosages. Id. at 3-4 & Ex. 4. Plaintiff was given blood glucose testing at his request and regular-acting insulin between Humulin doses. Id. at 4. He also was provided with glucose tablets for emergencies and a sandwich between the dinner and breakfast meals. Id.

         On December 11, 2015, plaintiff was released from the jail on his own recognizance. Lucas Decl. at 2. On December 18, 2015, plaintiff was against booked into the jail. Id.

         On April 29, 2016, plaintiff filed a grievance and complained that his legal mail was returned to him for insufficient postage. The Jail Commander responded and explained to plaintiff that his mail was required to comply with postage allocated on the envelopes and that his legal mail to the courts was delivered free of charge. Id. at 4 & Ex. 9.

         On July 15, 2016, plaintiff was released from the jail. Id. at 2.

         DISCUSSION

         In his complaint, plaintiff alleges the following claims for relief: deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs based on defendants' failure to provide adequate medication for his diabetes in March and November 2015 (Claims 1 and 2); deliberate indifference based on defendants' failure to provide and prepare meals appropriate for a diabetic (Claims 3 and 5); and interference with his legal mail (Claim 4). (ECF No. 2) Defendants contend that plaintiff failed to exhaust his administrative remedies with respect to several claims and that plaintiffs claims fail on the merits. To prevail, defendants must show that there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and they are entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a); Celotex Corp. v. ...


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