Inmate wrongful death lawsuit


The Atlanta Wrongful DeathLawyers working at our firm know that everyone deserves decent medical care and should not suffer from an unnecessary untimely death. Even those arrested, convicted, and incarcerated within our prison system deserve a reasonable standard of medical care and attention, as required by our laws and guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.

One recent wrongful death story highlights this point. Last year, a 17-year-old boy was found dead in his cell at the Mize Street Municipal Jail in Pelham, Georgia. Fabian Avery III, arrested in December 2010 for armed robbery, was transferred from the Fulton County Jail to Pelham on February 15, 2011, due to overcrowding. When he arrived in Pelham, the 6 foot 1 inch teenager weighed 153 pounds. At the time of his death one month later, he weighed 108 pounds.

Avery started complaining of illness on February 24; his symptoms were dismissed with little attention. He complained of nausea, stomach pains, lower back pains, and he vomited and defecated on himself. He was placed in a six by ten foot isolation cell – “the hole” – because he was defecating on himself and not cleaning up or showering. He was found unresponsive, lying on his mattress on the floor of the isolation cell, on March 18. Autopsy results found that Avery’s death was due to appendicitis and complications from a bowel obstruction.

Earlier this month, Avery’s mother, Sandrini Scott, filed a lawsuit against the City of Pelham and the city’s police department in a Georgia federal court, claiming wrongful death and civil rights violations. The lawsuit claims, “In the face of Avery’s obvious pain, deteriorating condition, and pleas for help from Fabian himself, from his family, and from other inmates, the medical, supervisory and correctional staff at the Mize Street Detention Center stood by and deliberately acted indifferent to his serious medical needs. This inaction was due, in substantial part, to deficient policies of the City of Pelham and the Pelham Police Department, which failed to provide sufficient, qualified medical staff and failed to train their non-medical staff to recognize and respond to serious medical conditions.”

The jail’s nurse, Mary Kincaid, suggested in an incident report that Avery might have been faking his symptoms. She claimed he would not provide a urine sample when requested and that she caught him sticking his finger in his throat to induce vomiting. The nurse claimed Avery told her that he simply did not want to get up to go to the bathroom when asked about soiling himself. Clearly, and tragically for the teenager’s family, his illness proved to be all too serious and real, resulting in his death; a death which could have been easily prevented by proper medical care.

If there has been a wrongful death in your family, the experienced personal injury lawyers at Sammons & Carpenter, PC can assist you in determining whether you have a valid claim and how to move forward with your legal options. Call us today at 404-991-5950, or contact our wrongful death attorneys online.

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