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Missouri: $75,000 Settlement for Detainee’s Death Due to Untreated Ulcer

A $75,000 settlement was reached in a civil rights action alleging denial of medical care to a pretrial detainee who died from complications related to a peptic ulcer. The death of Robert Breeding, 32, came only five days after he was booked into Missouri’s St. Charles County Department of Corrections (SCCDOC).

Breeding arrived at the SCCDOC on August 25, 2013. During his stay at the jail he “made countless complaints to guards, nurses, inmates, staff, and family about his abdominal pain.” His repeated indication that his condition was a medical emergency and his requests for medical care were ignored, the complaint alleged.

After he was found dead in his cell on August 30, an autopsy determined his death was caused by a perforated peptic ulcer. Breeding, who had a 2-year-old and a baby on the way, was in SCCDOC awaiting disposition of charges for resisting arrest, leaving the scene of an accident, tampering with a motor vehicle, DWI and drug possession.

“He didn’t deserve to die,” said attorney Michael Schlueter, who represented Breeding’s estate.

The June 20, 2017 confidential settlement for $75,000 was reached “solely for the purpose of avoiding further expenses and the risks inherent in litigation,” stated Associate County Counselor Rory P. O’Sullivan. See: Estate of Breeding v. St. Charles County, U.S.D.C. (E.D. Mo.), Case No. 4:15-cv-00539-RWS. 

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Related legal case

Estate of Breeding v. St. Charles County