Saturday, March 9, 2013

$15.5 million for Dogged Out Mentally Ill Inmate

Steve Slevin before and after solitary confinement

A New Mexico man who spent nearly two years behind bars without trial will receive a $15.5-million settlement because a federal jury decided that his rights to adequate medical attention and due process had been violated.

During the time Stephen Slevin, 58, spent in solitary confinement at Doña Ana County Detention Center, his mental and physical health deteriorated so severely that he spent hours on end rocking back and forth beneath a blanket, his attorney told the Los Angeles Times. Slevin even wiggled a tooth loose so he could yank it out, Matt Coyte said.

“They treated him in a manner that was inhumane,” he said. “They treated him worse than an animal.”

Slevin's legal troubles began in August 2005, when he was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated and driving a stolen car -- a vehicle he says he borrowed from a friend. Slevin also suffered from depression and alcoholism, Coyte said.

Finish reading the article at LA Times
http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-stephen-slevin-15-million-settlement-20130308,0,3998308.story

The poor man reportedly begged jail employees for help but received none. Solitary confinement torture is known to cause mental illness in sane people and make mentally ill people much worse. Slevin told employees he was experiencing "panic attacks, shakes, and trouble sleeping." Imagine being jailed and refused trial. That happened to Slevin, and it could happen to many more Americans under NDAA, which allows indefinite detention in military concentration camps without any opportunity for defense. LA Times has a handy poll to vote whether you believe Slevin's judgment was fair. Do not vote whether it was fair for Slevin; vote whether YOU would want to be treated that way. If you don't have that much imagination, imagine your DOG being caged for two years straight, alone in a tight space, his whimpers ignored. I am happy for Slevin and hope he will fully recover from his ordeal. But I knew even before checking for his photograph that he was white. Caucasians usually get justice when their abuse is publicized.

Blacks who were represented by the late, great Johnnie Cochran usually experienced some measure of justice. For instance, Geronimo ji Jaga (Pratt) was exonerated after spending eight years in solitary confinement and 27years in prison on a murder conviction. He was awarded substantially less than Slevin for serving much more time - $4.5 million. LA Times reported: "Pratt always has insisted that he was in Oakland attending Black Panther Party meetings when the Olsens were attacked. Years later, retired FBI agent M. Wesley Swearingen said the bureau knew Pratt was in the Bay Area then because the Panthers were under surveillance and phones at their party headquarters were tapped." ji Jaga was represented in his quest to overturn the wrongful conviction by Johnnie Cochran and other attorneys.

Johnnie Cochran's reputation for successfully representing clients against corporate wrongdoing, police brutality, and prisoner abuse attracted the Neals to take the firm the Wrongful Death of Larry Neal case in 2003. (See Wrongful Death of Larry Neal.com website http://WrongfulDeathofLarryNeal.com ). However, my family was not aware when my mentally, physically disabled brother was murdered in Memphis Shelby County Jail that Johnnie Cochran had brain tumors and that the firm had essentially been sold to some racists who misuse his name and legacy to this very day. Google "Cochran Firm Fraud." 

Generally speaking, anyone can be arrested or brutalized by police officers at any time. The beating death of another Californian, Kelly Thomas, proved that. He was a 33-year-old mentally challenged Caucasian. March 15 is the International Day of Action Against Police Brutality. Everyone who is concerned about overuse of force incidents should participate, including honest law enforcement officers who tire of working in a volatile atmosphere because of a few bad cops. Without united action, one doubts if black men and other minorities or the mentally ill in America will ever have their human rights honored.

Congratulations to Steve Slevin, who is a free, wealthy man today. Let us pray that his mental faculties are fully restored.

Mentally ill Americans need Dog Justice

1 comment:

Mary Neal said...

UPDATED TO ADD:

Blacks who were represented by the late, great Johnnie Cochran usually experienced some measure of justice. For instance, Geronimo ji Jaga (Pratt) was exonerated after spending eight years in solitary confinement and 27years in prison on a murder conviction. He was awarded substantially less than Slevin for serving much more time - $4.5 million. LA Times reported: "Pratt always has insisted that he was in Oakland attending Black Panther Party meetings when the Olsens were attacked. Years later, retired FBI agent M. Wesley Swearingen said the bureau knew Pratt was in the Bay Area then because the Panthers were under surveillance and phones at their party headquarters were tapped." ji Jaga was represented in his quest to overturn the wrongful conviction by Johnnie Cochran and other attorneys.

Johnnie Cochran's reputation for successfully representing clients against corporate wrongdoing, police brutality, and prisoner abuse attracted the Neals to take the firm the Wrongful Death of Larry Neal case in 2003. (See Wrongful Death of Larry Neal.com website http://WrongfulDeathofLarryNeal.com ). However, my family was not aware when my mentally, physically disabled brother was murdered in Memphis Shelby County Jail that Johnnie Cochran had brain tumors and that the firm had essentially been sold to some racists who misuse his name and legacy to this very day. Google "Cochran Firm Fraud."

Generally speaking, anyone can be arrested or brutalized by police officers at any time. The beating death of another Californian, Kelly Thomas, proved that. He was a 33-year-old mentally challenged Caucasian. March 15 is the International Day of Action Against Police Brutality. Everyone who is concerned about overuse of force incidents should participate, including honest law enforcement officers who tire of working in a volatile atmosphere because of a few bad cops. Without united action, one doubts if black men and other minorities or the mentally ill in America will ever have their human rights honored.

Congratulations to Steve Slevin, who is a free, wealthy man today. Let us pray that his mental faculties are fully restored.