Miami, FL – The family of a former inmate of the Broward County Jail has filed a federal civil rights lawsuit and the former sheriff, Ken Jenne, has been named personally. This could mean that any damages the jury awards could result in Jenne having to pay out of his own pocket. Other defendants include Armor Correctional Health Services and Broward County.
The former sheriff was scheduled to take the stand inside the walls of a Virginia federal penitentiary where he is serving time for corruption, regarding the case surrounding the severe brain injury of Dana Clyde Jones, 46.
Inmate Suffers Personal Injuries
On December 16, 2005, Jones was found lying in a pool of blood as a result of other inmates allegedly attacking Jones at the orders of the detention deputies because Jones is said to have made a lewd comment to a female guard. The lawsuit alleges that the beating was covered up and that they later said they did not know whether Jones was beaten or if he slipped and fell. The brain injuries that Jones suffered were so severe that he was in a coma for months afterwards.
Jones is now a resident of Pompano Beach nursing home where he has to be fed through a feeding tube and where his family has said in the lawsuit that he is not receiving the therapy that he needs.
Sheriff Being Called to Take the Stand in Civil Rights Lawsuit
The new sheriff has obtained private attorneys who have tried to block the testimony of Jenne because they say that Jenne knows nothing about the case. They are alleging that the testimony of the former sheriff is just an effort to further demean and harass him. It was U.S. District Judge Marcia Cook who determined that Jenne must testify in the case. The reason is because the lawsuit is alleging that Jenne was the one who set the stage for the beating and that he covered up the abuse by not documenting fights amongst inmates and not doing competent investigations. They say it is difficult to think that Jenne had no knowledge of the incident when he had a very hands-on approach when handling the jail.
Inmate Had History of Mental Illness
As for why Jones was in the jail, he was arrested after he punched his mother in the mouth when she asked him to turn the down the volume of the television. He was deemed incompetent three months after the incident and was sent to a state mental hospital. It was in August 2005 that he was sent to Broward after his treatment and he was placed with the general population. His family claims that he was not classified properly because he has a history of mental illness. They said he should have been given separate quarters and should have been supervised closely. However, the jail system was under a federal consent decree from 1994 that set specific rules for housing, classifying, separating, and monitoring their inmates. Jones was apparently not given a cell, but was sleeping outside of the cells in an object that looks similar to a blue boat. It was next to that “boat” that a guard found Jones in the floor in a pool of blood.
The family says that they were not told until 6 days after the incident that he had even sustained such brain injuries.
In the meantime, the trial is scheduled to begin in August.
Contacting a Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyer
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