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

California: City Liable For Hospital Costs of Prisoner Taken from City Jail

By John E. Dannenberg

In May 2003, indigent prisoner Kenneth Denham was arrested and detained by Oakland police. Five days later they took him to the county jail, but the county refused to accept him because he was too sick. Oakland police then took Denham to ValleyCare Medical Center in Pleasanton, where Denham was given surgery and hospitalization lasting a month, at a cost of $237,000. When ValleyCare demanded payment, both the city and county declined; ValleyCare sued both.

The Superior Court ruled that the California Penal Code required reimbursement to ValleyCare. The county was dismissed because it did not receive Denham. The city was held liable because Denham was taken from city jail to the hospital.

See: ValleyCare v. Oakland, Alameda County Case No. VG04155957 (April 2008). Source: VerdictSearch California.

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

ValleyCare v. Oakland