Urgent medical attention following an arrest

Discussion in 'Law & Justice' started by JoakimFlorence, Jun 14, 2016.

  1. JoakimFlorence

    JoakimFlorence Banned

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    Many times, when police arrest someone, it is right after a situation where this same individual has been seriously injured and needs to go to the hospital. But instead of getting the medical attention they need, they are often times just thrown into jail to languish for 3 days before the initial appearance before a judge. The jail nurse may apply some bandages and put on some disinfectant, but the medical care is extremely limited. Very often the prisoner is not even provided anything to sleep on. So imagine this injured individual, in terrible pain, sleeping on a cold hard concrete floor, no blanket or pillow, like this continually for 2 or 3 days.

    There was a 64-year-old man in New Jersey who got into a fight with his wife and got stabbed in the neck. The police responded and happened to notice that there was more gunpowder being stored in the basement than legally allowed under State law (or so the police claimed, which is another matter). The police informed him they were placing him under arrest. The old man had to use his walker to even get to the police car.

    In another case there was a 25-year-old guy who was driving his motorcycle late at night, with his girlfriend on the bike behind him. They had just gone out to dinner at a nice restaurant where the guy had several glasses of wine. The guy made a sharp turn off a freeway onramp and the bike slipped and crashed. It had just been raining a little bit before so the road was a slippery. The two were able to walk away from the crashed bike but the guy had suffered serious lacerations on his arm and leg, and suffered severe injury to the tip of one of his fingers, completely losing the fingernail. A motorist who was driving by and saw that the bike had crashed dialed 911. Instead of an ambulance, the police came and arrested the guy. He was not drunk, but probably had a little bit more to drink than he should have. Because he had just been involved in a motorcycle crash 15 minutes ago, he was a little bit dazed and disoriented. He did not end up getting to the hospital until 4 days following the crash, after he was released on bail.

    The doctors in the hospital scrubbed out his wounds and gave him a brace for his finger. They told him he should have received medical attention earlier because it could have resulted in infection. While they were scrubbing out his wounds it was excruciatingly painful, but they the doctor claimed that if it wasn't done there could be gangrene, and ultimately that could lead to them having to amputate. The emergency room doctor seemed irked that the wounds had gone so long without being properly scrubbed and disinfected.

    Sick woman dies of dehydration in jail
    A 50-year-old woman, who being treated for a stomach illness, was arrested in the hospital for failing to pay court fines. In jail, she became too sick to eat and vomited all night. She was given a trash bag to vomit in, but was mostly ignored. Eventually she became too weak to even call for help. After 27 hours in the jail cell she died.
    http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20160224/PC16/160229636

    Arizona Prisoner dies from Lung Cancer and gross neglect
    Ferdinand Dix had been sentenced to 6 years in Arizona state prison for drug crimes and forgery. The man also had lung cancer, and made multiple pleas for medical treatment. Instead of receiving proper attention, Dix was told to drink energy drinks. The cancer eventually moved to the rest of his body, severely impacting his liver and lymph nodes, and ultimately resulting in Dix’s death. A complaint alleges that Dix had been exhibiting signs and symptoms of lung cancer over a two-year period prior to his death. During this time the prisoner was seen by a physician only once, and that was only after Dix had been rushed to a local hospital in critical condition, only two weeks prior to his death. The prisoner had suffered gross medical neglect, and by the time he was finally taken to the hospital it was far too late. The hospital staff observed that Dix’s liver was grotesquely enlarged, 4 times bigger than a normal liver. During the last few months preceding his death Dix suffered horribly.

    Drunk driver involved in crash, was not given medical attention for injuries
    In 2014, Charles Brown, 41 years old, crashed his car. He had a prior misdemeanor charge for driving under the influence of alcohol earlier that year. Brown suffered four broken bones in his face, a concussion, and had a large cut on his face from a previous accident. He was taken to the hospital for treatment and given a blood test. Police officers came to the hospital and arrested Brown. He was then put in the drunk holding cell where he remained for several days and received no medical attention. Brown was eventually moved to the jail medical unit and given an antibiotic and ibuprofen, but his face continued swelling until one eye was closed and the other almost closed. When released from jail five days after his arrest, Brown's eye had to be lanced open to drain and to allow the tissue to regrow as it was beginning to die due to lack of circulation. Brown also suffered a torn rotator cuff that was not diagnosed at the hospital because he was unconscious and no one at the jail listened to his complaints or allowed him to see a doctor.
    http://www.courierpress.com/news/cr...r-dui--29b2486a-abe6-32e6-e053-365808271.html


    Situations where the one being arrested needs urgent medical attention are incredibly common, but most of the time unless the injuries are incredibly serious (like a gunshot wound), the individual fails to receive it.

    I think society needs to take a closer look at how individuals who have been arrested are treated when they have just been involved in a situation that caused them to suffer injuries. Or when police go into a hospital to arrest someone who is already suffering from medical issues.
     
  2. Diuretic

    Diuretic Well-Known Member

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    I would have thought SOP would be to send them off for medical treatment immediately. That's what has to happen in my state. The police would be in huge strife if they refused someone medical attention whilst in custody or failed to have them transferred in custody to hospital.
     
  3. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    A former Clackamas County jail inmate with a bowel condition claims that, despite his repeated pleas, he was denied medical attention and toilet paper and was severely punished when he caused a toilet to overflow.

    Kyle Bigbee claims the county and 14 Clackamas County Sheriff's Office employees violated his civil rights, according to a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Portland.

    Bigbee had ulcerative colitis, which resulted in the removal and surgical reconstruction of his colon in 2002.

    Bigbee's condition "requires him to void his bowels frequently (about once every 90 minutes) and it causes very loose bowel movements consistent with diarrhea," according to the lawsuit.

    "The condition also requires Mr. Bigbee to consistently consume water, so that he does not suffer dehydration," the lawsuit said.

    Deputies arrested Bigbee on contempt of court charges on April 1, 2013. The charges were later dismissed.

    Bigbee claims the following occurred at the jail:

    He was placed in an isolation cell. A deputy ignored his request to make a phone call, to have a medical evaluation and to get some toilet paper.

    No one responded when he pushed an emergency button.

    Bigbee was transferred to another cell where the emergency button wasn't working. Deputies again ignored his requests.

    Bigbee used the toilet but "without toilet paper, he was forced to use his underwear to clean himself."

    "He placed his underwear in the toilet, which caused the toilet to overflow spreading feces on the floor of the cell," the suit says.

    Bigbee said he spent the next 28 hours in a high-security cell without a toilet, only a grate in the floor.

    Bigbee claims he was restrained for four hours in "a seated or kneeling position, and his arms extended out to his sides, and hands cuffed to rings on the bottom of the cell."

    Bigbee said he "was forced to void his bowels on himself and on areas of the cell" and spent many hours naked because he had no shirt "and his pants were soon soiled with feces."

    Bigbee said deputies taunted him, called him a crude name and refused to give him water for hours.

    A few hours before he was released at 9:30 p.m. on April 2, 2013, Bigbee was taken to the jail's medical facility for a shower and medical screening.

    After his release, Bigbee went to Oregon Health Science University, where he was treated for dehydration and nerve damage in his wrists.

    Clackamas County Counsel Stephen Madkour said that after receiving a tort claim notice from Bigbee in September 2013, the county investigated the incident.

    "As a result of that investigation we concluded that these claims were without legal merit and we will fully defend against these allegations brought against the county and our deputies," Madkour said.
    The Oregonian, 2015, article by Steve Mayes
    https://www.oregonlive.com/clackamascounty/2015/04/lawsuit_man_with_bowel_problem.html
     
  4. blanco

    blanco Active Member

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    In UK we have "duty of care" common law emanating from Donoghue V Stevenson 1933. Probably the most important, or at least impacting, case law of all time.
    Police are not doctors or paramedics. They have to juggle between security/safety/welfare/preservation of life. Many prisoners, criminals lie .. "my head hurts"... "I've injured my back" etc. In UK I think there is a serious concern for the health of a criminal, thug, prisoner when they clearly say are bleeding profusely or have been stabbed or shot or battered. Medical assistance is first action. Also, I may add, in UK Police and Prison Officers do not leave a person face down on their chest. They know this restricts breathing and the "duty of care" is directly upon the officers to ensure the person is not face down on their chest. Serious struggle by the "prisoner" is deemed an attempt to escape and thus self-inflicted when they are face down but as soon as the police have control they must, by law, put the person in a position they can breathe. They are liable if they do not do it. I say this because I often see instances, on real-life TV or video of US Police kneeling on the criminal as he/she is pressed face down with the huge weight of the police officers.
    My point is; "Duty of care" is not a myth or something police etc can ignore. Many a criminal has sued the police and prison service in the UK. Of course, the balance of intent and doing one's duty to protect is argued in court.
     
  5. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    story from one man who was being held in jail before his trial, they denied him real pain medication after he had been sent to hospital and just undergone a hernia operation:

    I got a hernia here because I lifted too much weight. I noticed it had popped out a great deal - this overwhelmed me and I actually passed out. They took me to the clinic. They told me to push it back in myself and that they would give me some pain medication and sent me back to my cell. A month later, unexpectedly the hernia popped back out and completely blocked my G.I. tract. Beginning Sunday night, I began to vomit everything up. Tuesday they finally took me to the clinic, where the physician tried to repack my hernia (very, very painful!) to no avail. After awhile they decided to send me to the hospital. They asked me how I was going to pay for this and fortunately I had photocopies of my wife's group health insurance coverage ID card for me. They did get to me to the hospital where they scheduled me for surgery immediately. I stayed in the hospital until the next Sunday, and then I was returned to the jail. My physician at the hospital wanted to continue the heavy-duty pain medications I was on, but the jail will not allow such things, so I was prescribed ibuprofen and acetaminophen in high doses. I received my first dose of these lighter painkillers in jail after having gone with NO pain medication for three days - while healing from surgery.
    He was eventually found not guilty at trial after being held in jail for nearly three years.

    http://www.jailhousestories.org/ste...on-inhumane-jail-conditions-montgomery-county
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2019
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  6. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Just to point out the obvious, in case anyone was not aware, I would definitely not describe ibuprofen and acetaminophen as real painkillers. They are basically Advil and Tylenol. Advil is routinely taken by people for headaches. Tylenol is routinely taken by people who have the flu, and helps knock them out so they can sleep. Both are available without a prescription and both also come in forms marketed for small children. Yes, they might technically be able to block pain a little bit at higher doses, but these are not really what most people would consider real pain medications. Relying on Advil and Tylenol to deal with pain after a surgery is absurd and inhumane.
     
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  7. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Testicular torsion is a serious condition that needs to be treated immediately.
    In this case, it looks like they sent him to the hospital, the doctor failed to immediately recognize the problem, they sent him back to the prison, and the pain only intensified.
    If this was a normal person not in prison, they would have soon gone back to the hospital and the doctor most likely would have been able to make the correct diagnosis, but this was a man in prison who was only given one opportunity to see the doctor.

    In some of these cases, sometimes it does require two different trips to the doctor for them to make the correct diagnosis. If they come back again and are still in extreme pain after so many hours, doctors will often be inclined to conduct a more thorough diagnosis and consider additional possibilities.

    This man ended up losing his testicle when he probably could have avoided that outcome if he had not been in prison.

    Texas Inmate Sues County Over Not Receiving Proper Treatment for Testicular Problem ​

    A former Williamson County inmate has sued the county after he says he was not provided the proper treatment and medical attention for a testicular issue that came up while he was in jail. According to the lawsuit, the man was arrested by the Round Rock Police on June 21, 2016, for one count of aggravated robbery and two counts of burglary of habitation with intent to commit other felonies.

    The charges reportedly stemmed from an offense that occurred on March 31, 2015. The man remained in Williamson County jail pending trial on June 21, 2016, until May 18, 2018. During that time, he was on parole from a 2011 aggravated assault with a deadly weapon offense. A report was issued following his 2016 arrest. It alleged that this offense violated his parole terms. At all times during his incarceration, the lawsuit stated his parole wasn't revoked nor was he convicted of any offense.

    The suit states his medical issues arose back in January 2018. He requested some ibuprofen on January 11 and submitted a request for medical assistance and complained of swelling in his testicles on January 13. He was eventually transported to the hospital on January 14.

    While in the hospital, the suit stated the doctor didn't identify the cause of the swelling but prescribed the inmate with multiple medications and provide discharge instructions. The inmate was then instructed to follow up with a urologist and family physician within two to four dates and seek emergency care if swelling or pain occurred.

    According to the suit, there was an understanding of the doctor's instruction that was signed by a Williamson County deputy, and he was discharged on the same day. Jail records indicate that a follow-up appointment was not scheduled and the inmate wasn't placed in a medical unit for supervision. Once again, the man submitted another medical request for on January 17 because his swelling and pain had worsened. However, records indicate he wasn't seen by the Williamson County Medical department after the request.

    On January 20 the man filled out a Williamson County Sick Call Progress Note his testicles were swollen. Medical staff noted he had a low fever, was sweaty, and his pain and swelling were continuing despite the antibiotics prescribed. He was transported to the hospital where an ultrasound revealed he had testicular torsion and an orchiectomy, a surgical procedure (in which one or both testicles are removed) was performed on him. He was later discharged on January 24 and transported to jail.

    On April 6, 2018, the man was acquitted of all charges and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice dismissed all revocation proceedings against the man on May 18. Williamson County Sheriff's Office is not allowed to comment on pending litigation, but released a statement noting, "Sheriff Chody looks forward to vigorously defending the actions of the sheriff's office in this case."​
     
  8. blanco

    blanco Active Member

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    The issue is this: What do we expect, say.. if our son or daughter, brother or sister, parent or partner - find themselves in the care of prison and police staff (in custody)? They are under the complete control of the staff who are obliged to comply with the law.
    We must always seek the highest standards of care, under the law.
    I accept there are very good professional officers and many go beyond their duty of care because they have a moral standard with integrity but there are thousands of moronic - nasty - bullying - noncaring officers and many people are arrested despite NOT committing a crime. It is no good focusing on the thug rapist, violent pillock who we all despise because there are thousands of people who end up in custody who have simply had a bad time in their life or have NOT broken the law. These people will also fall under the control of unprofessional. useless staff.
    If you are promoted to sergeant or lieutenant etc you accept this rank because you accept responsibility and you MUST apply the law and rules correctly and make sure you do. This is why you are promoted.
     
  9. FatBack

    FatBack Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like a great argument to put the Gov. in charge of "health care"...just look how great of a job they do on inmates, or the VA. Morons...
     

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