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$17,000 Settlement in Guards’ Excessive Force against D.C. Prisoner

The District of Columbia (D.C.) paid $17,000 to settle the lawsuit of prisoner Darryl G. Wise for injuries sustained due to the use of excessive force against him by guards.

The complaint in this action involved events that occurred at the D.C. Jail on January 11, 2002. Wise was given a pass by his housing unit guard to report for a legal visit, but when he arrived at the visiting room, he was informed that he did not have a visitor.

After asking the housing guard about the situation with no result, Wise inquired of his housing supervisor, Sgt. E. Collier. When Collier sarcastically asked, “What do you want me to do about it?” Wise replied that he should do his job.

After Wise refused to obey two orders to sit down, Collier handcuffed him and escorted him to his cell. Wise stuck his hands through the cell window to be un-handcuffed. Collier grabbed the cuffs and pulled down on Wise’s arms as he pulled him out to the elbows. When his attempt to punch Wise was unsuccessful, Collier pepper-sprayed him and called a code blue.

Lt. McCormick arrived and ordered two guards to shower Wise. When Wise was at the shower area, McCormick punched him in the face several times. Wise’s complaint alleged civil rights and state law violations. He accepted settlement on December 13, 2003. He was represented by Silver Springs, Maryland attorney Michael Z.C. Okpala. See: Wise v. District of Columbia, USDC, District of Columbia, Case No. 1:03-cv-00171.

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Related legal case

Wise v. District of Columbia