ALLEGAN, Mich. (WWJ/AP) – A man who said he was severely beaten while in jail has agreed to a $300,000 settlement in a lawsuit against a western Michigan county.
A deal was reached this week with the help of a mediator.
Aaron Henderson said in the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Grand Rapids that a deputy kneed him in the head in the Allegan County Jail, causing him to slam into a wall and break several facial bones. Henderson claimed in the lawsuit that feared for his life and thought he was going to die in his cell. He said he didn’t get medical care for hours.
Henderson, who now lives in Orlando, Florida, was living Allegan when he was arrested for disorderly conduct in February 2014.
The sheriff said a deputy used a restraint that wasn’t taught by the sheriff’s department. The deputy was suspended for one day without pay after the incident. Following an investigation, the Allegan County Prosecutor’s office declined to press charges against the deputy, who still works for the county.
Attorney James Dyer says the county has insurance for the settlement. He says the county had defenses to Henderson’s allegations but any jury trial carries risks.
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