Skip navigation
× You have 2 more free articles available this month. Subscribe today.

$500,000 Awarded Kansas Citizen For 25 Days False Imprisonment

Alonzo Echols, 48, is not Alonzo Eacholes, despite repeatedly telling
officers, jails, and courts this. In February of 2000, Echols was arrested
for felony battery on a warrant that should have been for Eacholes. His
release took 18 months, though Echols' attorney knew immediately of the
mistake. Echols sued Wyandotte County and settled in 2002 for $25,000.

In October 2003, Echols was again arrested for domestic battery. The jail
had five outstanding warrants with his name and date of birth, though they
were actually for the other Eacholes. A judge released him 25 days later
and he sued for false imprisonment and intentional infliction of emotional
distress. Wyandotte County admitted its mistake leaving only the issue of
damages for past and future pain. Echols did not seek punitive damages.

At trial, the County claimed Echols could have bonded out for $300 and
refused in order to get a big payday. Echols presented evidence a judge
told him no bond given considering all the outstanding warrants. On
December 14, 2005, the jury returned the maximum award under Kansas law:
$500,000. See: Echols v. Wyandotte County, USDC D KS, Case No. 2:04 2484.

As a digital subscriber to Prison Legal News, you can access full text and downloads for this and other premium content.

Subscribe today

Already a subscriber? Login

Related legal case

Echols v. Wyandotte County