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$125,000 Settlement in Suicide Death Of New York Jail Prisoner

On April 29, 2009, Onondaga County, New York agreed to settle a lawsuit filed by the family of a prisoner who committed suicide at the Onondaga County Justice Center (OCJC) for $125,000.

On October 7, 2006, William O’Neil hung himself from a bed sheet tied to his cell door. O’Neil was incarcerated at the OCJC in Syracuse at the time.

O’Neil’s family sued Onondaga County following his death alleging jail staff acted with deliberate indifference to O’Neil’s health and safety. According to the plaintiffs, Jail staff failed to properly monitor O’Neil in spite of being aware of his suicidal tendencies. The defendants claimed that they were unaware O’Neil was a suicide risk.

Prior to trial, the parties negotiated a settlement of $125,000. See: O’Neill v. Onondaga County, No. 5:08-cv-00139-GTS-GHL (N.D. NY 2009). The plaintiffs were represented by Sam A. Elbadawi of the Sugarman Law Firm, LLP, Syracuse, New York.

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Related legal case

O’Neill v. Onondaga County

Please see the brief bank for documents related to this case.