The New York Daily News splashed the cheeky headline, “Bada-Ping!” across its front page story, which detailed how the 64-year-old plaintiff, convicted a year earlier of racketeering conspiracy connected to several plots of murder, was injured in a slip-and-fall. He asserts prison officials knew or should have known there was a hazardous wet floor in the recreation area of the prison. As proof, he noted the proximity of the showers to a leaky slop sink pipe nearby. The leak had been reported to officials from the prison days or weeks before the fall. Plaintiff suffered a fractured right knee cap that required surgery, and he is continuing to undergo physical therapy and occupational therapy.
The government refutes any allegations of negligence. What the newspaper fails to note is that suing a prison or jail – particularly one operated by the government – can be very difficult. Suing privately-run prisons and jails may be a bit easier, but there are still significant challenge. Only claims of serious injury or wrongful death have much of a chance of moving forward, and that’s only if plaintiffs can prove a violation of civil rights, including deliberate indifference to a medical need. Continue reading