Not an immigration case, but a successful wrongful death case against a for-profit prison in Texas.
Corpus Christi Caller by Steve Alford
FALFURRIAS — A Corpus Christi jury returned a verdict Wednesday siding with the widow of a man who died in January 2009 at the Brooks County Detention Center in Falfurrias.
The federal jury decided unanimously to award $2.25 million to the widow of 42-year-old Mario Garcia, who died of a seizure while on suicide watch at the center.
Garcia's family contends he was denied prescribed medications while at the facility, which led to his death 12 days after being brought there.
His condition began to quickly deteriorate after being jailed, though he was never sent to a physician or a hospital, according to the family's counsel. Garcia left behind a wife and a 10-year-old son.
Kathy Snapka, lead counsel for the Garcia family, called the death preventable and said facility staff disregarded his condition. Snapka said the family hopes the verdict in Garcia v. Niderhauser will send a message to other facilities that they will be held accountable for neglect.
"Monica Garcia's objective was to speak for Mario to ensure that no other person is denied the right to receive medical attention," Snapka said.
Attorneys for LCS Corrections, which owns Brooks County Detention Center, were not immediately available for comment Wednesday. Both sides await the ruling of U.S. District Judge Randy Crane, who has as much as 30 days to make a judgment.
Good work, attorney Kathy Snapka!