Former Inmate Files North Carolina Personal Injury Lawsuit Over Tuberculosis Outbreak

July 13, 2010, by Michael A. DeMayo

Lumberton resident Floyd Baldwin is suing Brunswick County officials for North Carolina personal injury. The plaintiff, a former inmate, claims that negligence contributed to the tuberculosis outbreak that occurred in jail last summer. The defendants include Brunswick County’s sheriff, health department, commissioners, and Southern Health Partners Inc., the county’s insurer.

Baldwin says that he spent nine months on the same cellblock were inmate Omar Morales was living. Baldwin, who is taking medicine for the non-contagious form of the disease, contends that Morales, who started the outbreak, was not tested for TB before being admitted to the jail in October 2008. He also says that not only did the defendants disregard the seriousness of Morales’s condition and symptoms, but also, he is accusing the sheriff’s office of failing to have the required jail health plan.

Baldwin claims that the jail ignored the inmates requests that Morales be given medical help and that it was only after Morales’s cellmate also developed TB that the medical care the latter needed was provided.

Since August, 42 people have tested positive for TB, but only two have the active type that is contagious. Baldwin wants damages over $10,000 for emotional trauma, mental anguish and pain, permanent physical injury, physical injury, future medical bills, and other injuries. His North Carolina personal injury attorney says more civil complaints from other inmates who contracted TB are expected.

North Carolina Personal Injury
Officials in charge of prisons and jails are responsible for making sure that suspects and inmates do not become victims of police brutality, violent crimes by other inmates, medical neglect, or other types of negligence. Unfortunately, inmates have been known to suffer North Carolina injury, illness, and death because officials failed to abide by regulations, protect them from physical harm, or make sure they received the necessary medical care.

TB is a contagious bacterial infection that can attack the lungs, kidney, brain, or spine. Failure to treat tuberculosis properly and in a timely manner can prove fatal.

Inmate sues sheriff’s office, health department, county commissioners for TB exposure,, July 13, 2010

Former inmate suing Brunswick County after contracting tuberculosis in jail, Star News Online, June 29, 2010

Related Web Resources:
Tuberculosis (TB), CDC

Brunswick County, North Carolina


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