Thursday, January 26, 2012

A solitary example

Another nugget to make you feel all warm and fuzzy about crime and punishment in modern 'Merica:
A man who spent two years in solitary confinement after getting arrested for DWI was awarded $22 million for suffering inhumane treatment in New Mexico's Dona Ana County Jail.
Stephen Slevin was arrested in August of 2005 for driving while intoxicated, according to NBC station He said he never got a trial and spent the entire time languishing in solitary, even pulling his own tooth when he was denied dental care...
The $22 million settlement, awarded by a federal jury on Tuesday, is one of the largest prisoner civil rights settlements in U.S. history, according to
Like anyone who remembers pre-9/11 America, my first thought was "there has to be more to this story."  But if there is, the long arm of the law doesn't seem particularly interested in telling it.  According to the stories, the county didn't return calls for comment after the verdict.  That, coupled with the whopping huge settlement, would tend to indicate this is a particularly egregious case of cops gone wild.  And yet...

...not the smallest hint anyone has been disciplined for this, while taxpayers shell out mucho dinero for the folly of their own officials.  As Yakov Smirnoff says, "what a country!"

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