St. Louis inmates accuse correction officers of deliberate intent to cause harm to others

By Noddy A. Fernandez | May 29, 2017

ST. LOUIS — St. Louis prison inmates are suing corrections officers and guards, citing alleged deliberate intent to cause harm and assault to other inmates.

Derrick Rodgers and Thaddeus Dumas filed a complaint on May 24 in the St. Louis Circuit Court against Dexter Brinson, Elvis Howard, Corrections Officer Jeffries, et al. alleging that the defendants failed their duty to be responsible for the safekeeping of prisoners and failed their obligation to protect them against physical harm from other prisoners.

According to the complaint, the plaintiffs allege that on May 24-25, 2012, Dumas was removed from his cell and was ordered to use sadistic force against another inmate, Rodgers. Dumas was under threat that if he did not attack Rodgers, he will be attacked by a third inmate and would have no access to the commissary. Dumas engaged in a fight with Rodgers, and Rodgers suffered multiple contusions and was not given any medical aid, according to the complaint. The plaintiffs claim they suffered sadistic use of force, deprivation of meals and medical treatment. 

The plaintiffs hold the defendants responsible because they allegedly used detainees as surrogates to inflict sadistic force against other detainees, failed to enact adequate policies or to enforce appropriate discipline against the corrections officers and violated the rights of detainees to be free from fear and bodily harm.

The plaintiffs request a trial by jury and seek judgement for compensatory and exemplary damages of $150,000 plus attorney's fees, costs, and any other relief this Court deems necessary and appropriate. They are represented by Ryan M. Smith and Daniel R. Brown of Ryan M. Smith in Overland.

St. Louis Circuit Court case number 1722-CC01396

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