Paralyzed inmate alleges medical neglect resulted in infection, amputation

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Sep. 24, 2011, 11:28am

GALVESTON - A paralyzed inmate with Texas Department of Criminal Justice alleges his rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act have been violated since he was first incarcerated.

In a $2 million lawsuit filed Sept. 16 in the Galveston Division of the Southern District of Texas, Donald Ray Eubanks claims he received poor treatment while imprisoned in the Galveston County Jail and later in various institutions within the TDCJ prison system.

Eubanks, who became paralyzed as a result of a car accident in 1982 and is serving a life sentence stemming from a 2009 criminal conviction, states his health has been jeopardized by the alleged actions of his jailers.

His suit targets TDCJ, Galveston County, the Galveston County Sheriff's Office and several key officials and individuals.

The plaintiff claims he unsuccessfully requested special accommodations in relation to his condition at the Galveston County Jail.

His alleges his needs were unmet and as a result he developed an infection. He claims the county "intentionally and callously" failed to provide necessary care, the original petition says.

He was transferred to TDCJ after he filed a grievance.

According to the suit, a state-designated doctor's apparent neglect to properly treat Eubanks resulted in the complainant being taken to the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston where physicians removed his legs, a testicle and his rectum.

It adds the plaintiff continued to receive inadequate medical care as well as developed a life threatening MRE infection while he recuperated from the operation.

The plaintiff says the respondents' conduct and actions also violated his Eighth and Fourteenth Amendment rights.

A jury trial is requested.

Attorney John S. Cossum of Houston is representing Eubanks.

U.S. District Judge Kenneth M. Hoyt is presiding over the case.

Case No. 3:11-cv-432

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