United States District Court, N.D. Ohio, Western Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Jeffrey J. Helmick United States District Judge.
Lisa Peterson, Oscar Cataldi, Jr., and Robert Yochum have
filed a motion for judgment on the pleadings, asserting the
complaint filed by pro se Plaintiff Luther Johnson
fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted.
(Doc. No. 21). Johnson filed a brief in opposition. (Doc. No.
parties have filed a variety of other motions. Defendants
have filed a motion for leave to take Johnson's
deposition. (Doc. No. 20). Johnson has filed three motions
for discovery, (Doc. No. 17; Doc. No. 27; and Doc. No. 28), a
motion for the appointment of counsel, (Doc. No. 22), and a
motion objecting to Defendants' motion for leave to take
his deposition. (Doc. No. 23).
reasons stated below, Plaintiff's motions and
Defendants' motion for leave are denied, and
Defendants' Rule 12(c) motion is granted.
an inmate at the Allen Oakwood Correctional Institution in
Lima, Ohio (“AOCI”), was diagnosed with Hepatitis
C in 2000. He has had periodic biopsies in the intervening
years which have showed his Hepatitis C infection is
progressing and is causing liver damage. (Doc. No. 1 at 3).
Since at least 2016, Johnson has pursued more aggressive
treatment for his Hepatitis C infection from medical staff at
AOCI and through the grievance system. (Id. at 3-8).
He alleges Defendants Peterson, Cataldi, Yochum, and Dr.
Carlos Perez have refused to provide him with treatment to
slow or reverse the progression of his condition because his
virus has not yet progressed to stage 3, as required by the
policies and procedures of the Ohio Department of
Rehabilitation and Correction. (Id. at 7-8).
is the Health Care Administrator at AOCI, Cataldi and Perez
are the current and former Lead Doctor, and Yochum is a
registered nurse at the facility. (Doc. No. 1 at 2). Johnson
alleges Defendants have violated his rights under the Eighth
and Fourteenth Amendments by refusing to provide him with the
treatment he has requested for his Hepatitis C infection. He
seeks compensatory and punitive damages.
12(c) motions for judgment on the pleadings are subject to
the same standard as a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss.
JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. v. Winget, 510 F.3d 577,
581 (6th Cir. 2007). A court construes the complaint in the
light most favorable to the plaintiff and accepts as true
well-pleaded factual allegations. Daily Servs., LLC v.
Valentino, 756 F.3d 893, 896 (6th Cir. 2014) (citing
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 679 (2009)).
Factual allegations must be sufficient to state a plausible
claim for relief. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. Legal
conclusions and unwarranted factual inferences are not
entitled to a presumption of truth. Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). In ruling on a motion
to dismiss, a court may consider public records as well as
documents attached to the motion to dismiss if those
documents “are referred to in the plaintiff's
complaint and are central to the plaintiff's
claim.” Jackson v. City of Columbus, 194 F.3d
737, 745 (6th Cir. 1999), abrogated on other grounds by
Swierkiewicz v. Sorema N.A., 534 U.S. 506 (2002).
Section 1983 - Deliberate Indifference
inmate claiming prison officials violated the Eighth
Amendment must show the officials acted with deliberate
indifference to the inmate's medical needs. Estelle
v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 103-04 (1976).
first part of the deliberate-indifference showing requires a
prisoner show “he is incarcerated under conditions
posing a substantial risk of serious harm.” Farmer
v. Brennan, 511 U.S. 825, 834 (1994). The second part
requires a showing that the defendant knew of and disregarded
an excessive risk to inmate health or safety - “the
official must both be aware of the facts from which the
inference could be drawn that a substantial risk of harm