Author Topic: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest  (Read 1171 times)

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Offline rangerrebew

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Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« on: January 01, 2014, 07:08:07 PM »
Ignored by jail staff, woman loses arm after rough arrest

Posted By Robby Soave On 10:04 AM 01/01/2014 In | No Comments


A woman has filed suit against the police department that injured her arm during her arrest and then ignored her increasingly poor medical state — eventually costing her an arm.

The woman — 35-year-old Amy Needham of Ross Township, Penn. — was arrested in April for skipping a preliminary hearing related to a disorderly conduct charge against her. Needham claimed that police surprised her while she was in the bathroom, tasered her and applied arms bars and wrist locks, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Police also used handcuffs that were “too tight,” according to Needham’s official complaint.

The lawsuit alleges that the rough treatment of her arms and wrists led her to develop “compartment syndrome,” a muscle condition that results in permanent nerve and tissue damage if untreated. Muscles affected by compartment syndrome wither and die unless surgery is administered, according to Raw Story.

Needham spent one week in Allegheny County Jail, during which she asked to see a doctor 16 times. Belatedly, she was taken to a hospital, where doctors amputated her arm at the elbow.

Needham had a job in a restaurant, but can no longer work until she is fitted for a prosthetic arm. Her attorney said that the ordeal has left her with “psychological problems.”

“She feels that her life is ruined,” said Marvin Leibowitz, who is representing Needham in her recently filed lawsuit against Allegheny County, in a statement. “You’re 35 years old and you lose your arm.”

Needham had a minor criminal record. Earlier this year, she plead guilty to resisting arrest, simple assault and disorderly conduct.

The lawsuit alleges cruel and unusual punishment, excessive force, battery and negligence. Needham is seeking $75,000 in damages.

The county declined to comment on the matter, since litigation is pending.

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Article printed from The Daily Caller: http://dailycaller.com

URL to article: http://dailycaller.com/2014/01/01/ignored-by-jail-staff-woman-loses-arm-after-rough-arrest/
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Offline flowers

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2014, 08:24:02 PM »
this  takes disarming a suspect to a whole new level  :smokin:


Offline happyg

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2014, 08:29:50 PM »
this  takes disarming a suspect to a whole new level  :smokin:

 :silly: I was taking this article serious until I read your reply! I hope she wins her lawsuit, so she can get the best arms available. ^-^

Online 240B

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2014, 09:46:34 PM »
75K for a permenant disability? That is chickenfeed.
 
I assumed she would be asking for a million or two. She needs to change her attorney.
You cannot "COEXIST" with people who want to kill you.

Offline happyg

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2014, 09:49:47 PM »
75K for a permenant disability? That is chickenfeed.
 
I assumed she would be asking for a million or two. She needs to change her attorney.

Yep, considering the attorney gets 1/3 of the settlement. I don't know how much she deserves, but if I lost an arm, I'd be po'd enough to go for millions.

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2014, 09:54:54 PM »
Yeah, it make no sense. Once they 'settle' she is only going to get a percentage of the 75, and then the attorney will take his cut, as will taxes. By the time she gets any real money in her hand it will be bus fare.
 
She should check into what relationship her lawyer has with the police dept. or the city. There is something wrong with this picture.
You cannot "COEXIST" with people who want to kill you.

Offline happyg

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2014, 10:12:06 PM »
I found this comment:
Quote
in another story they explained the MINIMUM is 75k which allows the lawsuit to be brought in FEDERAL COURT not so shady. I think they have a very good case.

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2014, 10:15:29 PM »
That makes more sense.
You cannot "COEXIST" with people who want to kill you.

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2014, 11:18:46 PM »
$75k is way too low - she needs a new attorney.  She should be suing for at least $1 million, if not more.  First, they cost her an arm, for crying out  loud; they robbed her of her ability to earn a living in her chosen field - one-armed waitresses are few and far between - and caused her untold emotional harm.  Second, they had absolutely no excuse for what they did; not only did they use too much force, they callously sat there and did nothing while she pled for a doctor at least 16 times.  And all because she missed a court hearing?  That's not mere negligence, that's recklessness, if not constructive intent (i.e., knew or must have known with substantial certainty).  Unless state law prevents her, she should be demanding punitive damages as well.  These so-called "cops" should be fired and stripped of their retirement benefits; let them go pound the pavement and learn how to say "you want fries with that?"

The point about $75k being the threshhold for federal court is inapt:  that threshhold only applies to cases where there is so-called diversity, which requires that the plaintiff and the defendant be residents of different states; since she is a resident of PA and the county is in PA, there is no diversity so she cannot bring a suit based on state law in federal court.  If she has a claim based on federal law, such as sec. 1983, then she doesn't need any minimum amount of damages because there is no monetary threshhold for bringing a claim under federal law.

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2014, 09:26:53 AM »
From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
Quote
Sheriff disputes woman's story of mistreatment at Pittsburgh jail
December 31, 2013 11:38 PM 
By Rich Lord / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


A Ross woman who on Monday sued Allegheny County was resisting arrest during the incident, which she claims led to the loss of one arm, Sheriff Bill Mullen said Tuesday.

"We picked her up on a bench warrant. She resisted. She pleaded guilty to those charges," Sheriff Mullen said in response to a lawsuit by Amy J. Needham, 35.

"This is the first complaint we've had on it," the sheriff added. "Every time there's a use of force, we look at that. Every time there's a Taser use, we look at that," but the incident involving Ms. Needham did not raise any extraordinary issues.

Ms. Needham was arrested April 2 by county sheriffs, according to her civil complaint. She was wanted on a bench warrant after missing a hearing on another charge of resisting arrest and disorderly conduct related to a January incident.

When sheriff's office employees arrived, Ms. Needham said she was using the bathroom, but they broke down the bathroom door, according to her complaint. They shocked her with a Taser, applied arm bars and wrist locks, and put on handcuffs "that were too tight," her complaint said.

"Normal practice for us is if they're injured we take them to the hospital because the jail won't take them," Sheriff Mullen said. "This will all be played out in the courts."

The arrest, according to her complaint, caused "compartment syndrome," which is increased pressure in a muscle compartment that can damage both muscles and nerves. She claims that she could not get physician's attention during a week in jail despite 16 requests, and when she was finally sent to UPMC Mercy, her arm had to be amputated above the elbow.

Ms. Needham eventually pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct in the January incident, and to resisting arrest and simple assault in her altercation with the sheriff's employees.

With attorney Marvin Leibowitz, she has sued Sheriff Mullen, sheriff's Lt. John Kearney, sheriff's Detective Jared Kulik, Allegheny County and Allegheny Correctional Health Services, which ran the jail infirmary through August. The complaint alleges excessive force, cruel and unusual punishment, battery and negligence, and demands more than $75,000 in damages.

A county spokeswoman has declined to comment.
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Offline SouthTexas

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2014, 10:19:18 AM »
There is plenty of abuse by LE these days and this may be more of the same, but I don't quite follow how handcuffs, normally put on at the wrists, caused her to lose her arm at the elbow.

May be more to this story than what has been reported.

Offline xfreeper

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2014, 12:33:35 PM »
There is plenty of abuse by LE these days and this may be more of the same, but I don't quite follow how handcuffs, normally put on at the wrists, caused her to lose her arm at the elbow.

May be more to this story than what has been reported.

Well, there is according to the article itself
tasered her and applied arms bars and wrist locks, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
They then refused her medical treatment

Online mountaineer

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2014, 12:46:21 PM »
They then refused her medical treatment
Maybe.
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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #13 on: January 02, 2014, 12:50:41 PM »
There is plenty of abuse by LE these days and this may be more of the same, but I don't quite follow how handcuffs, normally put on at the wrists, caused her to lose her arm at the elbow.

May be more to this story than what has been reported.


If they are overtight they can cut off the circulation and lead to - at the least - temporary damage to nerves in the hands, making patches of them feel numb.

That can lead to Compartment Syndrome.  From the wikipedia article:
Quote
Compartment syndrome is a limb- and life-threatening condition which occurs after an injury, when there is insufficient blood supply to muscles and nerves due to increased pressure within the compartment such as the arm, leg or any enclosed space within the body.  If uncorrected, the lack of blood supply leads to injury in the affected muscles and nerves.


Overtight handcuffs can definitely lead to the loss of an arm.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2014, 12:53:05 PM by Oceander »

Offline rangerrebew

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2014, 01:02:52 PM »
this  takes disarming a suspect to a whole new level  :smokin:

I hear Obama is filing a lawsuit against her because he heard Israel is "rearming" her. :whistle:
Abraham Lincoln:

There is no grievance that is a fit object of redress by mob law.
--January 27, 1838 Lyceum Address

Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties. And not to Democrats alone do I make this appeal, but to all who love these
great and true principles.
--August 27, 1856 Speech at Kalamazoo, Michigan

Let us then turn this government back into the channel in which the framers of the Constitution originally placed it.
--July 10, 1858 Speech at Chicago

Offline SouthTexas

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #15 on: January 02, 2014, 01:11:25 PM »
Well, there is according to the article itself
tasered her and applied arms bars and wrist locks, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
They then refused her medical treatment

Maybe, still think there is more involved.

Offline SouthTexas

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #16 on: January 02, 2014, 01:21:25 PM »
If they are overtight they can cut off the circulation and lead to - at the least - temporary damage to nerves in the hands, making patches of them feel numb.

That can lead to Compartment Syndrome.  From the wikipedia article:
Overtight handcuffs can definitely lead to the loss of an arm.


This is the only reference I found at your link regarding time:  As of February 2001, any surgery[where?] that is expected to take longer than six hours to complete must include compartment syndrome on its list of post-operative complications.

Granted, there have been multiple cases of abuse lately that bordered on BDSM, but to leave someone cuffed for hours...  Other possible factors, was she diabetic or an IV drug user?  Was the door kicked in to the bathroom because she was flushing dope?

Offline xfreeper

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #17 on: January 02, 2014, 01:34:09 PM »
Maybe.
Needham spent one week in Allegheny County Jail, during which she asked to see a doctor 16 times. Belatedly, she was taken to a hospital, where doctors amputated her arm at the elbow.

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #18 on: January 02, 2014, 01:42:20 PM »
Needham spent one week in Allegheny County Jail, during which she asked to see a doctor 16 times. Belatedly, she was taken to a hospital, where doctors amputated her arm at the elbow.
Maybe. We haven't heard both sides.
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Offline aligncare

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #19 on: January 02, 2014, 02:02:23 PM »
What bothers many of us who see a story like this is the (alleged) lack of proportion and (alleged) lapse in judgment on the part of LE. When the state is empowered to detain a citizen or to take someone's liberty they have a solemn responsibility to treat them humanely no matter what a suspect is accused of.
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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #20 on: January 02, 2014, 02:28:46 PM »
Compartment Syndrome is real, and a very serious condition both life and limb threatening.

My brother had serious fractures to his lower leg, to both bones. It required surgery with rods for both bones.

In the days following, the doctors worried and warned the family about Compartment Syndrome, and the fact it was a cause for amputation. IOW they prepared the family for the worst case.

They transferred him to a bigger hospital, monitored him closely, did surgery to relieve/avoid the effects of the syndrome.

In the end he came through with flying colors, thanks to good doctors, hospitals, patient and concerned family.

So if this lady complained but was not given a visit to a doctor, lost her arm to Compartment Syndrome, she has a huge case.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compartment_syndrome

Offline xfreeper

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Re: Ignored by jail staff wman loses arm after rough arrest
« Reply #21 on: January 02, 2014, 10:09:53 PM »
Maybe. We haven't heard both sides.
I wonder if they will deny she lost her arm


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