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Case Name Dobbey v. Weilding PC-IL-0052
Docket / Court 1:13-cv-01068 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Prison Conditions
Special Collection COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)
Attorney Organization Loevy & Loevy
Case Summary
COVID-19 Summary: The plaintiffs, a class of prisoners housed at Stateville Correctional Center, asked the court to temporarily appoint an expert to oversee the Illinois Department of Correction's (IDOC) response to the COVID-19 pandemic at Stateville. The court denied the motion on April 13, 2020 ... read more >
COVID-19 Summary: The plaintiffs, a class of prisoners housed at Stateville Correctional Center, asked the court to temporarily appoint an expert to oversee the Illinois Department of Correction's (IDOC) response to the COVID-19 pandemic at Stateville. The court denied the motion on April 13, 2020.


This case was originally filed in 2013. On February 8, 2013, the plaintiff filed a pro se complaint in the Northern District of Illinois against employees at Stateville Correctional Center. The plaintiff brought suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment Violations. Specifically, the plaintiff complained of unsanitary birds and vermin in inmates' living units and common areas, unbearable florescent lighting preventing inmates from getting proper sleep, unsanitary living conditions, inadequate ventilation, contaminated water supply, and unsafe housing in the "Bravo, Charlie, Delta, and Edward-Building" in which the plaintiff was housed. The [laintiff sought injunctive and declaratory relief, along with compensatory damages, punitive damages, and damages for physical and mental suffering. The case was assigned to Judge Robert M. Dow, Jr.

On February 20, 2013, the plaintiff filed a motion for attorney assistance and a motion to certify a class of the approximately 1,700 inmates housed at Stateville Correctional Center. The court granted the plaintiff's request for counsel and appointed law firm Harold V. Johnson, Brinks, Hofer, Gilson & Lione. The court denied the plaintiff's motion for class certification without prejudice. The Defendants filed their answer on May 28, 2013, denying that they violated plaintiff's constitutional rights.

On October 17, 2013, while represented by counsel, the plaintiff filed an amended complaint alleging the same substantive allegations. The amended complaint also explained that the plaintiff had exhausted his administrative remedies. On January 7, 2014, the plaintiff filed a second amended complaint adding additional defendants, who were at Stateville Correctional Center.

On January 23, 2014, the court entered an amended order granting class certification after the parties filed a joint status report recommending that a class be certified. The certified class consisted of all individuals incarcerated at the Stateville Correctional Center at any time since January 1, 2011, and all individuals who will be housed at the Stateville Correctional Center in the future. The court appointed Harold Johnson as the attorney for the class.

On March 6, 2014, the Defendants filed a motion to dismiss portions of the plaintiffs' complaint for failure to allege constitutional violations. In April 2014, Loevy & Loevy was substituted as counsel for the Plaintiffs. On September 8, 2014, the court struck the motion to dismiss with permission to refile. In July 2015, the parties began attending settlement conferences. On September 5, 2018, the court appointed an expert to assist with settlement negotiations. In the parties' December 2019 joint status report, they discussed a recent building inspection of Stateville Correctional Center and proposed a timeline for repairs.

On September 25, 2018, the plaintiff filed a motion to terminate Loevy & Loevy as class action counsel and a motion for appointment of new class counsel. The plaintiff never filed a brief in support and withdrew his motion on December 4, 2018.

On April 2, 2020, the plaintiffs filed a motion for an emergency, the temporary appointment of a Special Master to oversee IDOC's response to the COVID-19 pandemic at Stateville Correctional Center. The plaintiffs sought an individual or individuals with expertise in correctional facility management as well as infectious disease and/or public health to evaluate IDOC's response with regard to:
(1) segregating Class Members who are exhibiting symptoms of infection from healthy Class Members;
(2) reducing the spread of the virus through all necessary health and sanitation recommendations:
(3) instituting social distancing for living, daily activities like eating and showering;
(4) providing PPE to Class Members to reduce the spread of the virus; and
(5) ensuring all possible means are used to segregate any Class Members whose age or prior medical conditions put them at increased risk of developing severe medical complications if they contracted COVID-19.

On April 3, 2020, the court held a status conference and requested that the plaintiffs supplement their motion with a concrete proposal. In response, the plaintiffs modified their emergency motion to request the appointment of an expert instead of a special master. The plaintiffs sought the temporary appointment of an expert to: (1) access information from the Defendants regarding the conditions at Stateville, and speak with relevant IDOC employees about the Defendants’ COVID-19 response at Stateville; and (2) provide recommendations to the court and parties regarding the Defendants’ COVID-19 response at Stateville to ensure that all class members’ health and safety were protected during this crisis period.

On April 13, 2020, Judge Robert M. Dow, Jr. denied without prejudice the plaintiff's motion to appoint an expert. The court concluded that imposing additional obligations on the already overburdened medical personnel and correctional staff would have been counterproductive, especially given that none of the individuals identified as potential experts had particularized knowledge about the conditions at Stateville since the first COVID-19 case was identified.

As of June 2, 2020, this case is ongoing.

Elena Malik - 06/02/2020


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Defendant-type
Corrections
General
Bathing and hygiene
Conditions of confinement
Food service / nutrition / hydration
Sanitation / living conditions
Totality of conditions
Medical/Mental Health
COVID-19 Mitigation Denied
COVID-19 Mitigation Requested
Medical care, general
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Stateville Correctional Center
Plaintiff Description All individuals incarcerated at the Stateville Correctional Center at any time since January 1, 2011, and all individuals that will be housed at the Stateville Correctional Center in the future.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Loevy & Loevy
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Filed Pro Se Yes
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Filed 02/08/2013
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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Docket(s)
1:13-cv-1068 (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0052-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/19/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1, 1-1, 1-2, 1-3, 1-4, 1-5]
PC-IL-0052-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/08/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Answer to Plaintiffs' Complaint [ECF# 19]
PC-IL-0052-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/28/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Amended Complaint [ECF# 27, 27-1, 27-2, 27-3, 27-4, 27-5]
PC-IL-0052-0011.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/17/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Revised Second Amended Complaint [ECF# 35, 35-1, 35-2, 35-3, 35-4, 35-5]
PC-IL-0052-0012.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/07/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Granting Class Certification [ECF# 37] (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0052-0013.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/23/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum in Support of Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Portions of Plaintiffs' Second Amended Class Action Complaint [ECF# 48]
PC-IL-0052-0014.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/06/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Joint Status Report [ECF# 192]
PC-IL-0052-0015.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/06/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Amended General Order 20-0012 [ECF# 226] (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0052-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/16/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Second Amended General Order 20-0012 [ECF# 227] (N.D. Ill.)
PC-IL-0052-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/30/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Emergency Motion for Temporary Appointment of a Special Master [ECF# 230 (& 230-1 to 230-13)]
PC-IL-0052-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/02/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Motion for an Expedited Hearing on Plaintiffs' Emergency Motion for Temporary Appointment of a Special Master [ECF# 232, 232-1 through 232-7]
PC-IL-0052-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/02/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Supplemental Memorandum in Support of Plaintiffs' Emergency Motion and Amended Motion for Appointment of Rule 706 Expert [ECF# 239]
PC-IL-0052-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/06/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Opposition to Plaintiffs' Amended Motion for Rule 706 Expert [ECF# 241]
PC-IL-0052-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/08/2020
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
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Judges Dow, Robert Michael Jr. (N.D. Ill.) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0013 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Pallmeyer, Rebecca R. (N.D. Ill.) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0001 | PC-IL-0052-0002
Plaintiff's Lawyers Crosley, Adair (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-9000
Donnell, Heather Lewis (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0005 | PC-IL-0052-0006 | PC-IL-0052-0007 | PC-IL-0052-0015 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Field, Vincenzo (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-9000
Grady, Sarah (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0005 | PC-IL-0052-0006 | PC-IL-0052-0007 | PC-IL-0052-0015 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Hanna, David Michael (California) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0012 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Johnson, Harold V. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0011 | PC-IL-0052-0012 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Kanovitz, Michael I. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0005 | PC-IL-0052-0006 | PC-IL-0052-0007 | PC-IL-0052-0015 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Kayes, Thomas (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-9000
Loevy, Arthur R. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0005 | PC-IL-0052-0006 | PC-IL-0052-0007 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Loevy, Jonathan I. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0005 | PC-IL-0052-0006 | PC-IL-0052-0007 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Parsons, Luke Austin (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-9000
Weil, Stephen Heschel (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0005 | PC-IL-0052-0006 | PC-IL-0052-0007 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Doran, James Patrick (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0008 | PC-IL-0052-0015 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Henretty, Lyle Kevin (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-9000
Lovellette, Kevin R. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0010 | PC-IL-0052-0014 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Madigan, Lisa (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0010 | PC-IL-0052-0014
Ptasznik, Agnes A. (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0010 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Raoul, Kwame (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0008
Rees, R. Douglas (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0008 | PC-IL-0052-9000
Scheller, Jessica Megan (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-9000
Staley, Nicholas Scott (Illinois) show/hide docs
PC-IL-0052-0008 | PC-IL-0052-9000

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