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$13,500 for Ruptured Appendix

$13,500 for ruptured appendix

In the early morning hours of October 28, 1995, Arnold Kitchen awoke in his cell at the Airway Heights Corrections Center (AHCC), near Spokane, Washington, in excruciating pain. His symptoms included severe abdominal pain of a sudden onset and vomiting of a "brownish/green mushy" substance. Mr. Kitchen immediately reported his condition to AHCC staff, who told him he was probably suffering from the flu. He was given Tylenol and told to return to his cell.

Mr. Kitchen's condition continued to deteriorate over the course of the next several days. He could no longer walk without assistance, his abdomen was swollen and extremely painful, and he continued to vomit. Mr. Kitchen's condition was so grave that other prisoners began to seek assistance on his behalf. Again, AHCC staff did nothing.

Finally, on November 1, 1995, Mr. Kitchen was taken to the AHCC infirmary where he was diagnosed with dehydration and placed on intravenous fluids. Because his symptoms did not subside, Mr. Kitchen was transported to Deaconness Medical Center in Spokane, where doctors discovered a ruptured appendix. Emergency surgery was immediately performed, and Mr. Kitchen's life was saved.

Following his ordeal, Mr. kitchen sued AHCC staff in federal court for violating his civil rights. The DOC agreed to settle the case for $13,500. Mr. Kitchen was represented by attorney Darol Tuttle of Tacoma. See: Kitchen v. Sgt. Kiser, No. CS-96-007-RHW (U.S.D.C. E.D. Wash., Sept. 3, 1998).

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Related legal case

Kitchen v. Sgt. Kiser