Mason Town guy died in Cerro Gordo Co. jail due to neglect of treatment

Dave O’Brien (courtesy photograph)

CEDAR RAPIDS — A Cedar Rapids law firm reported he hopes far more Iowa community governments observe the lead of Cerro Gordo County officers, who didn’t cover up wrongdoing and accepted responsibility for a person who died in jail.

Dave O’Brien stated the 4 small children of Ricky Christianson, 61, of Mason Town, hope the $3.5 million settlement with Cerro Gordo County can assistance avoid a different death due to neglect of treatment when in a county jail.

O’Brien said open communication with protection attorneys resulted in a good resolution for all functions.

“This was a terrible, terrible slip-up, but at the very least, it’s not compounded by not admitting the wrongdoing or striving to include it up,” O’Brien advised The Gazette Friday.

Legal professionals for the county and other staff members sued in November 2021 didn’t file any motions to dismiss or for summary judgment on certified immunity — guarding legislation enforcement accused of violating rights. As a substitute, they “acted swiftly and correctly to resolve the matter.”

In other identical wrongful loss of life lawsuits O’Brien has handled, this does not took place, he claimed. He is thinking of filing a few related lawsuits — none in Linn County.

“Too typically other localities try to protect up wrongdoing and refuse to acknowledge when regulation enforcement officers violate peoples’ civil rights,” O’Brien observed. “This kind of response just encourages much more wrongful perform and far more lawsuits as a end result.”

“This (case) provides the (Christianson loved ones) terrific self-confidence that this kind of a slip-up is hugely not likely to be repeated,” O’Brien included.

O’Brien stated the surveillance video taken from the jail helped clearly show what took place 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 sexual intercourse offender registry demands for 2nd time.

Christianson informed deputies he was remaining treated for existence-threatening seizures connected to alcoholism and that he experienced had a seizure the preceding working day.

Surveillance footage confirmed Christianson commenced obtaining seizures Nov. 18 and he was moved to a padded solitary mobile, O’Brien stated. He was found dead an hour and a half later when an worker checked on him.

The staff members mentioned they done video assessment checks of him even though in the cell but didn’t physically check his mobile for an hour and a 50 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 representing them.” He also thanked Ben Novotny and Nick Rowley of Trial Legal professionals for Justice who have legislation places of work in Des Moines and Decorah, for their skills on the circumstance.

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