January 31, 2017
A year after a mentally ill prisoner was beaten to death in a Santa Clara correctional facility, the victim’s family settled the case out of court for $3.6 million. The family of Michael Tyree, 31, includes his 7-year-old daughter and his two sisters. However, the family lawyer reported that the award from the civil rights claim and wrongful death lawsuit was bittersweet as they just want their father and brother back with them.
Tyree was housed in a section of the facility for those with special needs or those in protective custody. Tyree faced criminal charges for drug possession and misdemeanor theft.
Three jail guards, ages 27, 28 and 28, now face murder charges in the man’s death, which occurred on Aug. 27, 2015, and are pending trials in January 2017. The inmate died from serious spleen and liver damage and ultimately succumbed to internal bleeding. The correctional officers reportedly injured his eye, face, near his left ear and across his legs, arms, hips and back as well.
Other inmates reported that they could hear the man’s cries for help, which included “Stop,” and “I’m sorry,” during the alleged attack. The inmate was found naked in his cell, covered with vomit and feces.
On the night of his death, Tyree showed up as directed to have medication administered but would not take his pills. Instead, he put the prescription into his pocket. One of the correction officers then confronted him, and he subsequently ingested the pills. Later that evening, one guard supposedly kept watch while two of the guards reportedly entered his cell, initiating the incident. The trio is under suspicion for attacking another prisoner that same night as well.
Each of the men was taken into custody and posted $1.5 million bail pending their trial date.
When someone loses their life in a wrongful death incident, the family members focus on seeking justice in an effort to make some sense of the tragedy. In addition, loved ones often want to ensure that the guilty parties will be held responsible for their actions and that appropriate sanctions will emphasize the seriousness of the crime. Call our firm for help with your wrongful death claim today.