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Illinois Jail Agrees to Pay $290,000 & Annuity Payments to Settle Excessive Force Suit

Illinois Jail Agrees to Pay $290,000 & Annuity Payments to Settle Excessive Force Suit

Tazewell County, Illinois has agreed to settle an excessive force suit for $290,000 and annual annuity payments.

Charles Chandler was taken to the Tazewell County Jail on November 6, 2006, after being arrested for aggravated battery and criminal damage to property.

After being booked, Chandler was taken to a cell by guards. The cell, which was equipped with a video camera, captured some disturbing images, according to a lawsuit Chandler filed.

Chandler alleged in the suit that Sergeant Michael Harper and guards Joel Brown, Eric Rasmussen and Schad Martin viciously beat him while he was handcuffed, lying face-down on a concrete pad in the cell. A total of ten video frames allegedly captured the beating, along with Chandler’s clothes being removed as the beating took place.

After the beating stopped, Chandler was left naked, lying on the concrete slab in the cell. According to Chandler’s complaint, “blood was gushing” from his “mouth and teeth that had been extracted” during the beating.

In all, Chandler fractured two ribs, 18 teeth, both of his lower jaws and suffered lacerations, contusions and muscle spasms, the complaint states. Despite the obviousness of Chandler’s injuries, jail staff allegedly refused to provide Chandler with any medical care.

Chandler was taken to an emergency room by his father 22 hours after the attack upon his release from jail. “Surgical plates with locking screws” were required to correct Chandler’s jaw damage.

Chandler alleged that the defendants’ actions constituted excessive force and deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs, both violations of the Eighth Amendment.

Tazewell County agreed to settle the case for $290,000 upfront, followed by monthly annuity payments of $1,000 for 15 years beginning in 2024, and annuity payments of $4,194.27 per month thereafter until Chandler’s death.

Chandler was represented by Richard Stegall of Nicoara & Stegall, a Peoria, Illinois firm. See: Chandler v. Tazewell County, U.S.D.C., Case No. 07-1296 (C.D. Ill. 2009)

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Related legal case

Chandler v. Tazewell County,

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