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Attorneys Representing Dog Attack Victims Across Texas

This website is maintained by the Law Offices of Dean Malone, P.C., a Dallas, Texas law firm representing people across Texas for dog bite injury cases. We have attempted to provide useful information for those harmed by animal attacks.

Posts Tagged ‘Louisiana’

The Family of a Man Beaten to Death in a Louisiana County Jail Files a Federal Lawsuit

Thursday, January 11th, 2018

Beauregard Parish Jail in Louisiana (Photo: Labeled for reuse)

At the age of 40, Tommy Joe Smith was allegedly murdered at the Tangipahoa Parish jail in Amite, Louisiana, on January 31, 2017, by 12 prisoners, who attacked him. An autopsy showed that he died of blunt force trauma to the head. In the first week of January 2018, Smith’s family filed a lawsuit in connection with his death. The lawsuit claims that prisoners known to be violent were free to move between cells, though they knew Smith’s history increased the potential that he would be targeted for violence. The federal lawsuit claims that Smith was brutally beaten to death by a dozen prisoners while authorities in charge of the jail failed to adequately protect him. The Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff’s Office said things at the jail dormitory were very quickly brought under control, after the brutal attack.

According to Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff Daniel Edwards, the environment created limitations such as the ability of the victim to escape and the safety of jail staff members, emergency medical responders, and the prisoners. The primary consideration, in regards to that comment, was the number of prisoners involved in the custodial death.

In connection with Smith’s death, one juvenile and 11 men have been indicted by a grand jury on manslaughter charges.

In county jails, prisoners have a right to be protected from violence. Certain procedures are in place that provide guidelines for how to run a jail. In Texas, for example, county jails must follow a set of minimum jail standards. Jails are routinely inspected, to ensure that required practices are being followed. If there has been negligence, a jail receives a citation; they have a certain period of time in which to remedy the situation.

As with every post on this website, we are only providing information in this post and do not make any allegation or assertion that anyone acted inappropriately or engaged in misconduct.

–Guest Contributor

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A Louisiana Man is Injured and Charged in an Alleged Officer-Involved Shooting

Saturday, January 6th, 2018

Correctional Unit (Photo: Labeled for reuse)

An alleged officer-involved shooting that occurred on December 27, 2017, in Ouachita Parish, Louisiana, is under investigation. A preliminary investigation suggests that a Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office deputy stopped to assist a motorist in a stalled vehicle at approximately 2 a.m. The vehicle was stopped at the intersection of LA Hwy 139 and US 80. Shots were allegedly fired during the event, and a 36-year-old Bastrop man in the stalled vehicle was allegedly struck. He was transported to a local hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. As a result of the incident, charges of attempted first degree murder have been filed against the Bastrop man. He was also charged with possession of Schedule II narcotics. When the man is released from the hospital, he will be booked into the Ouachita Correctional Center in Monroe, Louisiana, according to authorities. The incident is under investigation by detectives with the Louisiana State Police, the Monroe Field Office, and the State Bureau of Investigation. There has been no mention of the police officer being injured during the incident.

The Texas Ranger Division with the Texas Department of Public Safety has the lead criminal investigative responsibility for officer-involved shooting investigations that occur in Texas. Currently, there are 222 full-time employees handling the many investigations. In 2015, for example, there were 3,224 investigations. Those investigations resulted in 1,583 felony arrests and 124 misdemeanor arrests.

As with every post on this website, we are only providing information in this post and do not make any allegation or assertion that anyone acted inappropriately or engaged in misconduct.

–Guest Contributor

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The Family of a Former New Orleans, Louisiana, Prisoner who Died of an Overdose Sues the Jail and Others

Friday, December 1st, 2017

English: Baton Rouge River Center

English: Baton Rouge River Center (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Twenty-three-year-old Colby Crawford was a prisoner in a New Orleans jail when he died of an overdose of cocaine in February of 2017. His family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the jail, the jail’s health care contractor, and others. Crawford had mental problems and had previously been in a special psychiatric unit before being transferred to jail, and the family had hoped Crawford would be safe there. He was in jail for allegedly punching his mother and hitting his sister with a wooden spoon. He pled not guilty by reason of insanity.

Crawford had been in a psychiatric hospital, experiencing hallucinations such as seeing ghosts, just prior to being booked into the Orleans Justice Center (OJC) in 2016. Rather than being placed in the special psychiatric unit in Baton Rouge, Crawford was prescribed medication and weeks later sent to the psych unit. After being in Baton Rouge for two months, he was allegedly returned to OJC as a punishment for minor rules infractions.

Eventually, Crawford was released into general population at OJC, where records show he failed to consistently take medications prescribed to him. In the understaffed unit where he stayed, however, prisoners accessed drugs. On February 22, the day Crawford collapsed and died of an overdose, he had allegedly snorted lines of coke in clear view of surveillance cameras throughout the day. At approximately 8 p.m., he suddenly died.

The family is making a number of claims in Crawford’s death, including that there was a failure to provide adequate mental health care, a failure to supervise the prisoners, and a failure to keep contraband from entering the jail.

As with every post on this website, we are only providing information in this post and do not make any allegation or assertion that anyone acted inappropriately or engaged in misconduct.

–Guest Contributor

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A Mentally Ill Woman Wielding a Sledge Ax is Allegedly Shot and Killed by a Reserve Deputy in New Mexico

Tuesday, November 7th, 2017

English: Police cruiser in Santa Fe, New Mexico

English: Police cruiser in Santa Fe, New Mexico (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Heather Denean Bubrig of New Orleans, Louisiana, was allegedly fatally shot by a reserve deputy with Dona Ana County in New Mexico on Tuesday, October 31, 2017. According to authorities, she had been armed with a sledge ax when she approached the reserve deputy. A sheriff’s department news release said that the reserve deputy had been at the scene because residents in the area called the police to report a woman breaking first into a home and then into a shed.

It was reported that 37-year-old Bubrig was mentally ill and had been released from a psychiatric hospital earlier that day. She and her boyfriend were reportedly at the hotel where they stayed when she demanded to leave. She was agitated and expressed fear that she was in danger. They were driving on Interstate 10, and the 51-year-old boyfriend pulled their pickup truck to the shoulder and stopped. Bubrig tried to walk onto the highway. When he attempted to stop her, she ran.

Later on, police got calls from two nearby residents. A woman said a female matching Bubrig’s description went into her house and tried to kill her. Nearby neighbors reported that a woman of the same description went inside their shed.

When police got to the scene, Bubrig exited the shed carrying a sledge ax and began closing distance on a reserve deputy. As she approached, the reserve deputy fired at least two shots with his handgun. Life-saving efforts began immediately, but Bubrig died at the scene.

The type of question that invariably comes up in police shootings is whether or not the police officer used excessive force, resulting in a fatality. If the law enforcement officer was wearing a body camera, the footage will be examined, as proof of what happened.

As with every post on this website, we are only providing information in this post and do not make any allegation or assertion that anyone acted inappropriately or engaged in misconduct.

–Guest Contributor

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Police Misconduct Attorney San Antonio – The Texas Senate Passes a Purportedly Weakened Sandra Bland Act – Part 2

Tuesday, May 16th, 2017

English: Photograph of the skyline of Downtown...

English: Photograph of the skyline of Downtown Houston, Texas Español: Una foto del panorama urbano de Downtown Houston Category:Images of Houston, Texas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On Thursday, May 11, 2017, the Sandra Bland Act was unanimously passed by Texas Senators. The bill addresses criminal justice reform issues related to the death of Sandra Bland, who was found dead, hanging in a Waller County, Texas, jail cell three days after an arrest resulting from a routine traffic stop. An investigation was done, and her death was declared a suicide. The family is disheartened by the final wording in the bill, since it left out elements they think more meaningfully address the issues that resulted in Bland’s death.

The Black Lives Matter movement gained much of its national momentum after Sandra Bland’s 2015 death following a traffic stop near Houston, Texas, in which she was pulled over for not using her turn signals before changing lanes. Her confrontation with the police officer who requested that she put out her cigarette ended with her being pulled from her car by force and then getting into an off-dash-cam altercation with the officer, who arrested her. Although Bland’s death in the jail cell three days later was ruled a suicide, jail procedures have been called into question.

The reforms that Bland’s family hoped would be enacted in the Sandra Bland Act were cut from the bill before being approved by the Texas Senate. Bland’s sister said the bill as it is “renders Sandy invisible.” The family still wants the legislation to be named after her, however.

In its original form, the bill would have required a higher burden of proof for officers to stop and search automobiles, additional training and counseling for law enforcement officers who are perceived to racially profile motorists, and ban arrests for offenses punishable only by a fine.

See Part 1 of this two-part series, for more information.

–Guest Contributor

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The Balch Springs Police Officer who Allegedly Shot 15-year-old Jordan Edwards is Charged with Murder

Monday, May 8th, 2017

English: A police station

English: A police station (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On Friday, May 5, 2017, the former Balch Springs, Texas, police officer who allegedly shot and killed unarmed 15-year-old Jordan Edwards was arrested and charged with the teen’s murder. The officer had worked as a law enforcement officer in Balch Springs for six years before being fired, following the alleged shooting. He turned himself in Friday and was later released on bail. His burden is to prove that he acted reasonably when the teen was allegedly shot.

The funeral for Edwards was held at the Mesquite Friendship Baptist Church on Saturday. The family recognizes that the outrage over Edwards’ death allegedly at the hands of a police officer is significant. They have asked to have time to grieve their loss before having to deal with mass protests and their loved one being made into a martyr.

Additional facts continue to be revealed about the April 29, 2017, incident which took the life of Edwards, who was an African-American student at Mesquite High School. Police had responded to a call about underage drinking at a party. Officers were inside the home where the alleged drinking party was occurring when they heard shots outside. Police officers then went outside. A vehicle full of teenagers backed out and then was headed away from police when an officer allegedly fired shots into the car.

One of the allegedly indiscriminate shots struck Edwards in the head. The shooting victim’s 16-year-old brother was driving. Those in the car later reported that, for several minutes, they didn’t know Jordan had been shot. It was approximately 15 minutes after the shooting that Edwards first received medical attention. He was transported to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

A search was done of the vehicle that the teens were in, and there were no weapons. Reportedly, none of the kids in the car had any history of weapons possession. In fact, it has been reported that none of them had ever had encounters with law enforcement before. By all reports, Edwards was a very likeable person who had completely stayed out of trouble.

–Guest Contributor

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