Good Lord, how many of these must I have read? 100? 200? More, I am sure. Nightmare true accounts of needless inmate deaths due to medical neglect. In the “real world”, getting treatment for a stomach ulcer would have been a simple routine. In our criminal justice system, landing in prison being accused of stealing a $5 candy bar will be a death sentence if you get a stomach ulcer!
And who PAID for the litigation and the settlement? YOU, the taxpayers!
Excerpts from the Article:
A $625,000 settlement in a wrongful death lawsuit against the Hampton Roads Regional Jail, its medical provider and a number of staff members was approved in federal court Tuesday.The suit was filed in June 2017 by the family of Henry Clay Stewart, an inmate who died Aug. 6, 2016, because of internal bleeding from a perforated stomach ulcer.
Inmates at the Portsmouth facility said that on Aug. 5, 2016, or the day after, Stewart “appeared not to be breathing and was foaming at the mouth,” according to the lawsuit. The suit alleged that correctional officers and medical staff provided Stewart with inadequate and delayed care in response.
“Had the defendants timely and properly intervened, Stewart would not have died,” the suit alleged. The defendants do not admit to any liability or wrongdoing in the settlement. According to court documents, the jail’s medical provider, Correct Care Solutions, will pay $525,000 of the settlement. The remaining $100,000 will be covered by the jail.
One-third of the settlement, or about $208,000, will go to the Richmond-based Krudys Law Firm, which represented Michelle Wilson and Joe Austin — Stewart’s sister and son, respectively — in the suit.
Attorney Mark J. Krudys declined to comment on the case. Lawyers for Correct Care Solutions and the Hampton Roads Regional Jail did not immediately return requests for comment.
The lawsuit said Stewart was arrested in May 2016 for allegedly violating the terms of his probation related to a 2011 shoplifting charge. He was first held at the Hampton City Jail but was transferred to Hampton Roads Regional Jail in June 2016.
The suit alleged that “from mid-July through his death on Aug. 6, 2016, Stewart repeatedly sought medical treatment for severe medical conditions, including chest and abdominal pain, blackouts, inability to keep down water or food, and drastic weight loss, but his pleas for urgent medical care were either ignored or the care provided to him was substandard and did not address his life-threatening medical needs.”
Hampton Roads Regional Jail has come under intense state scrutiny in recent years over the quality of its medical care after other inmate deaths, including 24-year-old Jamycheal Mitchell’s in 2015.
The state medical examiner found that Mitchell, who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, essentially wasted away in plain sight over a 101-day stay at the facility. He had been accused of stealing $5 worth of snacks from a convenience store.