July 4, 2022

Cedar Rapids lawyer wins $3.5 million settlement for jail loss of life

Mason Town gentleman died in Cerro Gordo Co. jail owing to neglect of treatment

Dave O’Brien (courtesy photograph)

CEDAR RAPIDS — A Cedar Rapids attorney said he hopes additional Iowa local governments stick to the direct of Cerro Gordo County officials, who didn’t deal with up wrongdoing and recognized duty for a male who died in jail.

Dave O’Brien mentioned the 4 kids of Ricky Christianson, 61, of Mason Town, hope the $3.5 million settlement with Cerro Gordo County can support stop a further loss of life thanks to neglect of care whilst in a county jail.

O’Brien said open up interaction with protection lawyers resulted in a reasonable resolution for all parties.

“This was a terrible, horrible error, but at minimum, it’s not compounded by not admitting the wrongdoing or attempting to include it up,” O’Brien instructed The Gazette Friday.

Lawyers for the county and other employees sued in November 2021 did not file any motions to dismiss or for summary judgment on skilled immunity — preserving law enforcement accused of violating rights. As an alternative, they “acted quickly and correctly to resolve the make any difference.”

In other related wrongful loss of life lawsuits O’Brien has dealt with, this doesn’t happened, he reported. He is looking at filing 3 equivalent lawsuits — none in Linn County.

“Too generally other localities try to cover up wrongdoing and refuse to confess when law enforcement officers violate peoples’ civil rights,” O’Brien mentioned. “This variety of reaction just encourages far more wrongful perform and much more lawsuits as a consequence.”

“This (case) gives the (Christianson household) terrific self esteem that these a error is very unlikely to be recurring,” O’Brien additional.

O’Brien mentioned the surveillance online video taken from the jail served demonstrate what occurred Nov. 18, 2020, when Christianson died.

Christianson was arrested and booked into the Cerro Gordo Jail Nov. 17, 2020, on a warrant for a parole violation on his conviction for violating the sex offender registry necessities for next time.

Christianson instructed deputies he was being treated for daily life-threatening seizures linked to alcoholism and that he had had a seizure the previous day.

Surveillance footage confirmed Christianson started possessing seizures Nov. 18 and he was moved to a padded solitary cell, O’Brien explained. He was identified useless an hour and a 50 percent later on when an worker checked on him.

The staff claimed they executed video overview checks of him although in the mobile but didn’t physically verify his mobile for an hour and a fifty percent.

O’Brien explained he needed to thank Christianson’s kids — Samantha Christianson Bashir, Cody Bashir, Cody Christianson and Zachariah Halvorson — for the “honor and privilege of symbolizing them.” He also thanked Ben Novotny and Nick Rowley of Demo Lawyers for Justice who have legislation places of work in Des Moines and Decorah, for their know-how on the scenario.

Opinions: (319) 398-8318 [email protected]