A war veteran who claims he was falsely arrested, beaten, and almost died due to neglect in an Oakland prison has launched legal action against the jail, claiming his pleas for help were ignored.
Kayvan Sabeghi, 33, was arrested during an Occupy rally in Oakland,California, in November last year. Video footage shows him being beaten with batons and he suffered a lacerated spleen which his attorney Dan Siegel says almost killed him after he was left without treatment for 18 hours in prison.
Siegel estimated damages in the case will be upwards of $1m but said his main aim was to change the practices at the jail. “The greater concern that he has is that there be some changes at the jail. It’s a big problem that the county has privatised health services in a public jail and that the company that’s doing it is more concerned about making money than providing quality care.”
A private company, Corizon, is hired by the prison authorities to take care of the medical needs of prisoners at Glenn Dyer. Corizon is named as one of the defendants in the suit, along with the county of Alameda, Sheriff Gregory Ahern and an officer at the county sheriff’s office.
On arrival at the prison Sabeghi told medical officers that he had been beaten by police and he offered to show them his injuries.
Corizon staff are accused of refusing to look at Sabeghi’s injuries.
The suit claims that his condition deteriorated and that despite showing severe distress and vomiting, Sabeghi did not receive treatment for 18 hours and was mocked by prison guards who dismissed his suffering as heroin withdrawal symptoms. It further claims that one officer filmed Sabeghi as he lay on the floor in agony and vomiting.
By the time his friends posted his bail, at 2pm the following day, he was so ill he could not lift himself from the concrete floor of his cell. Four hours later his friends came to the prison to get him out and an ambulance was called.
“There are a lot of people taken to jail who have substantial medical problems,” said Siegel. “There are a lot of people with drug and alcohol problems and they need to be adequately cared for … When you have guards who ridicule people with health problems, that’s a setup for failure. Maybe there are some who exaggerate their symptoms but I think they should all be checked out and if someone continues to complain, they should be given the benefit of the doubt. At least get a doctor.”
The suit further claims that a medical staffer did take Sabeghi’s blood pressure but reported, wrongly, that he was a diabetic and alcoholic and sought no further treatment for him.
Oakland - 5/10/12
[photo: photo taken via a popular photo taking app called instagram. on the side of a cement brick wall, spray paint reads, “gentrification in progress” it is accompanied by a sad face. the writing is above a plank of wood and behind a fence]
#gentrification in progress, West #Oakland. #graffiti (Taken with Instagram)
i go on my tumblr and it’s like “annoying white people saying annoying white people things” on my tumblelog and i’m like “ugh i need to post pictures of my beautiful face and write about my awesome life so i see that instead of boring reblogs that i would have preferred ended days ago”
in self-interested news, got the best brow wax of my life yesterday. the first picture is from last night when i got home, and they still had a little bit of the shaping pencil on them that the tech used to guide my ~future brow growth pattern~. she didn’t try to get me to wax off my mustache like she did before i started testosterone when it was much lighter and less sparse, which made me feel really good. i am glad i got over my fear of getting my brow waxed and being shamed for having a mustache or “upper lip hair” (uhh, no). i used to hate my mustache so much because every time i went to get my nails/hair/brows done the people working in whatever salon would always try to get me to get rid of it. and duh, of course, cause people are on their hustle. that’s what you gotta do, sell services. but there was always a tone of authority and shaming and to be honest, confusion/embarassment when i would decline. and there are few things i love better than a properly shaped brow, so i’m glad that i was just like “whatever i’m doing it and if she tells me i need to get rid of my stache i will say that i love it and then while she prepared the wax go on my phone and look at pictures of various beautiful femmes with facial hair” but instead, everything just went great. happy brows, happy boy. denise at queen nails II on telegraph & 25th in oakland is the best. <3 <3 <3
the second picture is from earlier today, before an interview for an internship at a book publishing company. i took that awkward smile pic and texted it to my mom because texting pictures of myself to my mom makes me feel less nervous?? idk. after i met with the staff, i was taken into the basement warehouse stock room (via an old dreamy beautiful freight elevator) and told i could put as many books in my backpack as i could fit. never have i so regretted packing my (small) backpack full of snacks, my notebooks, and an extra pair of shoes cause i couldn’t really fit much. (i did get three books though: radical acts about theatre and teaching theatre thru a lens of feminist-of-color methodologies, banned by alice walker, and this huge like 2000 page long anthology of women writers from the 20th century that features like, most of my favorite authors from the 20th century. p.s. lani, i didn’t take a picture like i said i would. i wore black pants and the tassel shoes and a skinny green belt that belongs to anna.
i saw that picture on the sidewalk and messaged it to a glittercat because it’s true.
after i sat in a taqueria for a long time and then hung out with my friend nico who is just one of the sweetest humans i have ever known in my whole life and i love them to pieces and am the most grateful ever for my friends, and i am so happy that i finally have friends in california, like lots of them who love each other and we spend time together and not just awkwardly go to shows together maybe once a month. ahh, i wanna cry a little bit. <3 <3 <3
oh also today was so beautiful and dry and warm and i rode my bike in the sun a lot. so california i would like to kiss you and thank you for being good to me (if you want that)