MADISON -- Authorities failed to understand a "specific neurological" injury suffered by inmate Kedron Eugene Setser that allegedly led to his suicide.
Malcolm D. Setser, father and personal representative of the estate of K.E. Setser, filed a personal injury suit through Charleston attorney Lonnie C. Simmons on Aug. 1 in Boone Circuit Court.
Suit states Setser "suffered a number of permanent physical and neurological injuries" caused by a June 12, 1999, automobile accident requiring ongoing medical care; and also declared, "As a result of the injuries he suffered from this accident and his depressive disorder, Decedent Kedron Setser was found to be disabled and was awarded Social Security disability and childhood disability benefits."
He killed himself Sept. 20, 2011, while being held at Southwestern Regional Jail.
The case lists following defendants: Alaina Harvey, a probation officer; Boone County Probation Services; John Workman, Home Incarceration Officer and Deputy Sheriff; Boone County Sheriff's Office; and Boone County Commission.
Setser suffered from Cauda Equina Syndrome, known as CES, which makes it difficult to urinate on demand. Complaint details several incidents requiring him to undergo drug/alcohol testing through urine sampling. Two felony convictions had led to court ordered supervision of Setser and situations where urine screening tests were the norm.
Complaint relates September 2011 request by defendants Harvey and Workman for a urine sample. "Although Decedent Kedron Setser made every attempt to comply ... and drank lots of water," says complaint, "he was unable to provide a urine sample after five hours."
Morgantown attorneys John M. Hedges and Stephanie J. Shepherd signed off Sept. 7 on a Motion To Dismiss the wrongful death claim against Harvey, saying "Plaintiff Fails to Allege Facts Sufficient to Establish that Defendant Harvey Was Liable in the Suicide Death of Kedron Setser."
Trial, with Judge William S. Thompson presiding, is scheduled for next August. Complaint will argue among other things, Decedent's constitutional rights were violated and there was disability discrimination relative to the West Virginia Human Rights Act.
The Court will be asked to include awards for compensatory and punitive damages when considering "all damages permitted by law," and specifically cover funeral and litigation expenses, as well as loss of income and medical expenses.
Boone Circuit Court case number: 12-C-174