LOS ANGELES – The parents of a 31-year-old man who died while jailed in 2017 have reached a tentative settlement with Los Angeles County in their lawsuit alleging their son did not get immediate medical care after being pepper-sprayed by sheriff’s deputies and shot with a stun gun.
Juan Manuel Correa Sr. and Maria A. Correa, the father and mother of Juan Manuel Correa Jr., brought the suit in January 2018 in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging wrongful death, negligence and civil rights violations.
“(Deputies) ignored (Correa Jr.’s) need for immediate medical care and he ultimately died,” the plaintiffs’ court papers alleged.
Their attorney, Michael Carrillo, filed a notice of settlement with Judge Christopher Lui, but no terms were divulged. Carrillo said the tentative settlement is subject to approval by the Board of Supervisors, which must sign off on all settlements above $100,000.
Lawyers for Los Angeles County maintain in their court papers that there was no evidence deputies knew or had reason to know of Correa Jr.’s need for medical care prior to the time that it was provided.
Sheriff’s officials said previously that Correa Jr. had serious mental health issues and was originally housed in the Twin Towers jail because of those problems on Sept. 26, 2017. However, instead of giving Correa immediate mental health treatment, he was transferred to the Men’s Central Jail, the suit alleges.
Deputies said Correa became ill after he was pepper-sprayed by deputies who were trying to break up a fight between Correa and his cellmate in the Men’s Central Jail.
“After an altercation with his cellmate, (Correa Jr.) was negligently and/or intentionally pepper-sprayed by jail staff and immediately thereafter, displayed obvious signs of physical distress,” the plaintiffs’ court papers state.
Correa also was shot with a stun gun, according to the suit, which additionally alleges the deputies were negligent in housing Correa in the Men’s Central Jail and for not getting him medical help fast enough when he began showing signs of distress from the stun gun and the pepper spray.