Woman files second lawsuit over son's death in county jail

Officer, nurse blamed for withheld medication

August 12, 1999|By Del Quentin Wilber | Del Quentin Wilber,SUN STAFF

Two months after a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit against Howard County in the death of a 22-year-old inmate at the county Detention Center, the man's mother is suing again.

Parrish Michael Spinoso died of an asthma attack in his cell on June 7, 1998. He had been arrested two days earlier during a raid on his Ellicott City apartment on drug charges.

The lawsuit alleges that Spinoso didn't get his medication to fight his asthma problem. Spinoso's mother, Carol Lee Spinoso, sued Howard County in November. That suit was dismissed in June by a federal judge who ruled that Spinoso's mother could not sue Howard County for the actions of individual employees.

Spinoso's mother filed a suit last week that names a corrections officer, Anthony D. Ravenell, and a nurse, Sara A. Williams, who works for a company that provides medical care for the inmates.

The lawsuit contends that Ravenell and Williams ignored "Spinoso's pleas for his medication."

A county lawyer said the officer did nothing wrong.

"The actions of Officer Ravenell and every other employee of Howard County who had any contact with Mr. Spinoso were thoroughly investigated, and we do not believe the claim has merits," said Rebecca A. Laws, senior assistant county solicitor.

Officials with the medical company, Emergency Medical Services Associates Correctional Care Inc., could not be reached for comment yesterday.

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