A ninth lawsuit alleging mistreatment at the Montgomery County Jail has been filed by a former inmate who had an altercation with a now-fired corrections officer that the sheriff's office tried to prosecute. The suit filed by former inmate Daryl Wallace is the most recent in a string of civil rights violation allegations dating back to 2012.
As the number of claims against the jail grew to seven, Montgomery County Commissioners called for a federal investigation but later agreed to work through a local oversight committee established to review policies, procedures, and facility investment.
A brief look at the nine current federal civil lawsuits and the inmates involved, in the order they were filed in Dayton’s U.S. District Court:
David Cooper | Filed August 2013
Cooper’s attorney alleges that in November 2012, Cooper was held in the jail in a 13-person cell despite psychological disorders that made him feel suicidal in a small, crowded place. Cooper was denied in his effort to be moved to a mental health unit. After one other inmate was found concealing medication in his mouth, all the inmates’ medications were discontinued. Cooper tried to kill himself by cutting arteries in his arm. After returning from the hospital, Cooper was returned to another 13-person cell. He used a metal clip in his ID armband to cut himself again. After a stay in a psychiatric hospital, he was returned to the jail where he allegedly clothed in just a gown on “suicide watch” and without bedding. He was fed a bologna sandwich and two cookies three times a day for 2.5 months. Later, Cooper was Taser-darted, pepper-sprayed and beaten up. Motions for summary judgment have been filed by several defendants and depositions have been taken. The trial is still scheduled for July 10.
Robert Richardson | Filed May 2014
Richardson, 28, died May 19, 2012 after corrections officers and medical personnel responded to his cell when his cellmate said Richardson needed assistance. The suit alleges several jail employees handcuffed and subdued Richardson on his stomach outside the cell door while he was having a medical emergency. The suit said that Richardson “was essentially crushed to death by various corrections officers.”An internal investigation found no wrongdoing by jail personnel, finding that “employees “restricted Mr. Richardson’s movement to prevent Mr. Richardson from injuring himself.” But in a deposition, sheriff’s office Capt. Chuck Crosby admitted that Richardson during the 22-minute ordeal was placed in restraints while in a prone position, which is in violation of departmental policy. The March 2017 trial date was vacated and a new trial date hasn’t been set.
Emily Evans | Filed September 2014
Evans, then 27, was brought to jail on a drunk-driving charge early in the morning of March 30, 2014. Her blood-alcohol level was twice the legal limit of .08. Surveillance video showed Sgt. Eric Banks interacting with Evans. Her attorney said a deputy pointed a Taser at Evans and threatened her, and that Banks slammed Evans to the floor, causing multiple facial fractures. Evans’ attorney said it took three months to get the video. An incident report by Banks said Evans used her legs to press against the wall and toward him, so he “guided her to the ground.” The suit was dismissed against all defendants but two — Banks and Thomas Feehan, who lost an appeal to be excused from the suit. A new trial date will be set soon, according to the case docket.
Amber Swink | Filed September 2016
Clay Twp. police on Nov. 15, 2015 brought Amber Swink, then 24, to jail after being called to a Brookville residence about a domestic dispute. After having been pepper-sprayed once by Sgt. Judith Sealey, she was placed into a restraint in an isolation cell for allegedly yelling and screaming. Surveillance video shows Sealey blast pepper spray directly into Swink’s face. The incident was investigated by Dayton police and now by federal agents. Sealey — who was promoted to captain early in 2016 — is back to work after being on administrative leave before a Montgomery County grand jury declined to indict her. Swink was sentenced to community control after being convicted of assault on a police officer for breaking the arresting officer’s glasses. Defendants have asked for a stay of discovery until after all investigations are complete. No trial date has been set.
Jeffrey Day | Filed October 2016
On Nov. 26, 2015, Day was in an automobile accident and suffered a fractured pelvis and hip. Day was arrested for obstructing justice after officers said he didn’t answer their questions truthfully and kept in the jail for five days — including three in a mental health area. He alleges two Trotwood police officers and several jail personnel repeatedly ignored his injuries. Those injuries required emergency surgery when Day was released. Surveillance video from the jail sally port and booking area appears to show Day, 36, of Dayton, struggling to walk. Day’s trial has been set for Feb. 18, 2019.
James J. Howard | Filed December 2016
The 53-year-old serving time in prison said he was hospitalized and had all five toes amputated due to negligent conduct in the jail in June 2015. Howard said he is a brittle diabetic who suffers from neuropathy and nerve damage. Howard alleges a doctor at Good Samaritan wouldn’t treat him when there was an infection in just one one toe. He also said after the amputation, no one put his wound vac back on for a week because they didn’t know how. He also alleged that a doctor told the judge in his case that healing in the jail wouldn’t be good because the conditions weren’t sanitary but that the judge didn’t listen. A magistrate judge ruled Howard’s complaint should be dismissed, but objections can be filed up until June 5, 2017.
Joseph Guglielmo | Filed January 2017
Attorneys for Guglielmo, 59, a homeless veteran picked up for being combative at a shelter, claim he was beaten so severely that he was in a coma for two months and is now cognitively disabled, wheelchair bound and lives in a nursing facility. In the complaint, Guglielmo alleges that in January 2015 some corrections officers stood in the way of a surveillance camera so his beating by others wouldn’t be captured on video. Guglielmo alleges that four corrections officers beat him in his cell and that two others remained outside but did nothing to stop one employee from throwing Guglielmo against a concrete wall and punching him in his head, eye area and abdomen. A trial has been scheduled for Oct. 22, 2018.
Charles Wade | Filed February 2017
Brought to the jail after his arrest for suspicion of operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs, Wade was described as intoxicated and belligerent but claims he wasn’t resisting, Wade was later placed in a restraint chair and pepper-sprayed Oct. 16, 2016. Wade claims the jail employees’ actions were improper and a violation of his civil rights. According to an incident report written by Sgt. John Eversole, one of the defendants, Wade was pepper-sprayed by Eversole, but “the spray did not have an immediate effect” and that Wade “briefly freed his left hand” and resisted. Eversole deployed a second burst, causing Wade and several jail employees to cough as Wade repeatedly says, “I can’t breathe.” Wade remained in the restraint chair from 4:46 a.m. until 7:24 a.m., in part because Wade was yelling, “I’m being denied my constitutional rights” and for “continued disorderly behavior,” the incident report says. A preliminary pretrial conference is scheduled for July 25, 2017.
Daryl Wallace | Filed May 2017
Attorneys for former inmate Daryl Wallace, 44, claim former corrections officer Jerrid Campbell “viciously beat” Wallace with impunity on Sept. 28, 2015 in an altercation captured on surveillance video. The civil rights, excessive force lawsuit says that Wallace complained to Campbell that his cell’s hot water wasn’t working and Campbell refused to call maintenance. Campbell was fired for “violations of numerous policies.” According to sheriff’s office documents, the violations included: using racist slurs against Sheriff Phil Plummer and other command staff members; failing to allow an inmate access to a dentist; two violations of use of force; an inappropriate Facebook post about a co-worker, making inaccurate and untruthful statements to the Dayton Daily News; making similar statements to the Dayton Weekly News. Campbell was suspended a total of 23 days for those alleged violations. No dates in the case have been set.