A grandmother in Colorado who was subject to brutal treatment by the police while naked and in her own home has received a $2.4 million settlement.
Carolyn O’Neal, 49, was drawing a bath for herself at her apartment in a sober living facility in 2014 and posed no danger to herself or others when police arrived at her apartment to do a welfare check after reports that she was distraught because her mother was dying.
After O’Neal sent the police away, the deputies from the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office entered her domicile using a set of keys. The woman immediately began yelling at the deputies, all of whom were men, to leave her home because she was naked and had no intent to harm herself. At that point, the officers pinned the 123-pound woman down onto her bed before handcuffing her and placing her under arrest, according to Denver Post. The officers covered her in a blanket before walking her out in broad daylight to the squad car.
When O’Neal was taken into custody, her ordeal only worsened as jail staff roughly tackled her to the ground and bound her to a chair with restraints to secure her limbs, shoulders and waist. Officers then placed a spit mask over her face before keeping her strapped to the chair for four hours, during which she was only covered by a smock that kept sliding down and exposing her naked body.
At some point, deputies released her legs from the restraints before she was strapped back in. When O’Neal resisted, the deputies applied pressure point techniques and even used a Taser on her, twice, leaving clear burn marks on her leg.
It took about 12 hours before O’Neal was finally given jail clothing.
Prosecutors accused O’Neal with resisting arrest and disorderly conduct during her time in the jail, but a judge later dismissed the charges and found that there was no cause for her initial arrest to begin with.
In her lawsuit against the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office, the deputies were alleged to have arrested O’Neal for her past protests over being arrested. The lawsuit also alleged that the sheriff’s office had utterly failed to train its deputies or jail staff on how to properly handle people suffering mental health issues while also having “created, fostered, maintained and tolerated an environment and culture of law enforcement brutality and deliberate indifference to the constitutional rights of its citizens and residents.”
A jury eventually decided the case in O’Neal’s favor, awarding her $3.6 million last April, which was eventually reduced by a judge to $2.1 million.
The ruling was challenged by both O’Neal and the County of Fremont, but they eventually settled for $2.4 million after the county dropped its appeal.
The embattled Fremont County Sheriff’s Office has faced a number of lawsuits in recent years. Jim Beicker, the sheriff at the time of O’Neal’s arrest, resigned in the year of that incident after a large number of his staff were placed on leave for misconduct and an effort to recall him failed.
Man’s Hand Amputated After Alabama Cops Hold Him In “Unbearably Tight” Handcuffs for Hours
An Alabama man is suing the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office for excessive force and civil rights violations after a sheriff’s deputy handcuffed him too tightly for several hours, resulting in major injuries that ultimately led to the amputation of his left hand.
Giovanni Loyola, 26, was at his mother’s trailer in Pinson, Alabama, on Feb. 16, 2020, when three sheriff’s deputies arrived in response to reports of an alleged fight between two men wielding firearms.
According to the lawsuit, a “Deputy Godber” grabbed Loyola by the wrist and roughly detained him mere moments after Loyola answered the door.
At that point, the deputy then pulled Loyola down the stairs and “slammed” him against the car before throwing him to the ground and punching him in the face. The deputy proceeded to handcuff Loyola in a manner that as “unbearably tight.”
Loyola claims that complications from the incident led to the amputation of his hand 10 months later.
According to the deputy’s report, Loyola was allegedly intoxicated and fighting with family members before he fought the deputies and resisted arrest. Loyola, however, claims that he was merely watching television.
During the arrest, Loyola complained that he was feeling numb in his left hand but deputy Godber ignored his pleas.
“The handcuffs remained tightly on Plaintiff’s wrists until they were removed hours later at the jail,” the amended complaint read. “After Plaintiff got out of jail on February 28, 2020, his left wrist was still in tremendous pain.”
Following his release from jail, Loyola checked into a local hospital and was told that he had a severe blood flow issue requiring surgery. Upon admission at Ascension St. Vincent’s East hospital in Birmingham, his fingertips were grey and doctors had a “concern for necrosis.”
Following multiple hospital visits and four surgeries over the course of 10 months, he eventually had the left hand amputated.
“Deputy Godber handcuffed Plaintiff’s wrists so tightly that Plaintiff immediately lost sensation in one hand, and Deputy Godber refused to loosen the handcuffs even after Plaintiff told him that they were too tight and were causing him pain,” Loyola’s attorneys argued. “These actions and inactions constituted unreasonable and excessive force.”
The lawsuit also alleges that deputies unlawfully searched his home without a warrant. Loyola is now suing for compensatory damages related to the physical and mental toll of the ordeal, his loss of income due to an inability to work, as well as medical costs, legal fees, and punitive damages.
‘Horrible History’: Mass Grave for 215 Indigenous Children Found at Canada Boarding School
Indigenous people are in shock and Canadians are reeling after a grim discovery cast a harsh light on the North American country’s bloody history of native genocide.
On Thursday, the chief of the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc Indigenous community confirmed that it had found the remains of 215 children buried in a mass grave at a state-run boarding school, including some as young as three.
The discovery of the mass grave at the Kamloops Indian Residential School offers a sobering confirmation of why such a large number of Indigenous children seized from their homes by Canadian authorities never made it back home – validating some of the worst fears of Tk’emlúps community members as to why their lost loved ones seemingly disappeared.
“It’s a harsh reality and it’s our truth, it’s our history,” said Chief Rosanne Casimir said at a news conference, reports New York Times. “And it’s something that we’ve always had to fight to prove. To me, it’s always been a horrible, horrible history.”
Chief Casimir said that there was always “a knowing” about the disturbing history at boarding schools like the Kamloops Indian Residential School and that proof finally came this past weekend thanks to ground-penetrating radar technology.
The school operated from 1890 to the late 1970s, with enrollment peaking at around 500 during the 1950s. Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission has confirmed that large amounts of Indigenous children fled the schools or died there, their whereabouts unknown. Former students have testified to the horrific sexual, mental and physical abuse they suffered while enrolled at the schols.
The Tk’emlúps Heritage Park where the school was located has now been closed as crews scour the area for more possible remains.
Children as young as three were students at the school, which was once the largest in Canada’s boarding schools for First Nations children.
It is believed that the deaths were swept under the rug and never documented, although Indigenous scholars are working with the Royal British Columbia Museum to find any possible records that may exist.
Chief Casimir has vowed that the Tk’emlups community would take full responsibility to do justice to the hundreds of “lost children” and their families.
“We sought out a way to confirm that knowing out of deepest respect and love for those lost children and their families, understanding that Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc is the final resting place of these children,” Chief Casimir said in a statement.
Work to identify the site began in the early 2000s and was led by Indigenous authorities in tandem with ceremonial Knowledge Keepers to ensure that cultural protocols were respected. State-of-the-art radar technology used to identify potential mass graves led to the recent breakthrough.
“With access to the latest technology, the true accounting of the missing students will hopefully bring some peace and closure to those lives lost and their home communities,” Casimir noted.
“At this time we have more questions than answers,” Casimir added.
CA Prison Guards Caught Lying About Brutal Torture and Beheading by Satanist Inmate
Some California prison guards are in hot water after they were found to have lied in their reports after a Satan-worshipping inmate brutally slaughtered his cellmate, according to a state investigation.
On March 9, 2019, 31-year-old inmate Jaime Osuna decapitated his cellmate Luis Romero, 44, and then dissected him in what the Los Angeles Times has described as “one of the most heinous slayings inside the California prison system.” The grisly murder also raises fresh questions about why Romero was assigned to a cell with Osuna, a self-described satanist with a long history of attacking his cellmates.
Osuna had been serving a life sentence for the murder and torture of a woman in 2011, and had never been given a cellmate in the past. Decked out in face tattoos and known for his over-the-top Charles Manson-like antics, Osuna boasted of his love for torturing people and mocked his victim’s family in court.
Romero, an inmate who had spent 27 years in prison for a second-degree murder he was convicted for as a teenager, was assigned to the same cell as Osuna just before he was going to be eligible for parole.
Using a homemade knife, Osuna cut out one of Romero’s eyes, chopped off his finger, removed a portion of his ribs and sliced off a part of a lung before eventually decapitating him. He then manipulated the corpse into a pose and cut the sides of his mouth to resemble a smile. He allegedly used sheets to cover the bars of the cell.
When guards finally discovered the scene, Osuna was wearing a necklace he made from Romero’s body parts.
However, guards reported on the prior night that both men had been alive. The cell was never checked throughout the night, according to a state probe, while two officers falsely reported that Romero was alive at the time when he was being brutally murdered. Two other officers also failed to properly count inmates on the night of the horrific slaying.
The state report adds that the prison’s internal affairs process was shoddy, while officers who lied and witnesses were never interviewed.
Osuna has since been transferred to the psychiatric inpatient program at Salinas Valley State Prison. He has been diagnosed with unspecified schizophrenia spectrum, antisocial personality disorder and borderline personality disorder and has been ruled not competent to stand trial for the brutal murder of Romero.
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