Settlement reached in Marion Co. Jail wrongful death lawsuit

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The family of a Marion County Jail inmate that died in jail has reached a $625,000 settlement in federal court as part of a wrongful death lawsuit.

Brain Hegwood, 31, was an inmate at Marion County Jail serving a 15-day sentence for a probation violation when he died in October 2019 while under the care of Wellpath medical staff.

The settlement was reached in the United States District Court of the Southern District of Indiana in August in the case Tracey Hardwick as Administrator of the Estate of Brian Hegwood v. Marion County Sheriff’s Department, et al., 1:21-cv-954.

Hardwick is Hegwood’s mother, according to a news release from the family’s attorneys.

The estate was represented by Charles Hayes and Jane Ruemmele from Hayes Ruemmele LLC and Steven Lammers from Mandel Rauch & Lammers, PC.

“By reaching this settlement, Hardwick hopes to raise awareness about the need for enhanced medical care and compassionate treatment of detainees in correctional facilities,” Hayes stated in the release.

According to court records, Hegwood’s condition deteriorated while in jail and his symptoms were ignored by medical staff. The decision to transfer him to a hospital was made once his sentence was concluded.

Hegwood died at Methodist Hospital several days later as a result of complications from MRSA endocarditis and septic emboli.

“By reaching this settlement, Hardwick hopes to raise awareness about the need for enhanced medical care and compassionate treatment of detainees in correctional facilities,” a news release from Charles Hayes, the family’s attorney, stated.

As part of the settlement, Wellpath does not admit liability in this matter, according to the release.

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