Former inmate talks about alleged jail mistreatment, $5 million lawsuit
Brian Mosiniak. WRCBtv.com photo
CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -
Channel 3 is following up on a story we first brought you in September about a former Silverdale inmate who is suing the corporation that owns the jail for $5 million.
Brian Mosiniak, 50, said he was denied medical care after breaking his hip in the facility, despite hours of begging for help. He's now permanently disabled, with one leg shorter than the other.
"They told me that I was faking, and told me that maybe the pain would go away in a couple hours and left," Mosiniak said.
Mosiniak said he spent nine hours face-down on the floor of a jail cell with a broken hip before anyone called an ambulance.
The 50-year-old was there for not paying child support.
Doctors said he should sleep on the bottom bunk because of medicine, but jailers put him on the top bunk, and Mosiniak fell.
According to the lawsuit, guards and nurses ignored his pleas for help for hours.
"They fed me my breakfast face-down on the concrete. And I'm still begging for help, still trying to get somebody to take me to the hospital," said Mosiniak.
After Mosiniak arrived to the emergency room, a surgeon used four screws to fix his hip. After a three-day hospital stay, he was transported back to the jail and placed in a non-handicap cell.
"I couldn't get to the toilet, I couldn't get up to brush my teeth," he said.
It wasn't for three more days until Mosiniak was moved to a handicap cell. But the van that took him to court was not a handicap-accessible van. He claims he was forced to walk while he still needed a wheelchair.
"I had to hoist myself out," he said.
Still shackled, Mosiniak fell while getting out of the van, tearing the screws out of his hip. In pain, he said he had to walk inside the courthouse before getting access to a wheelchair.
About a week later, Mosiniak got out of jail. His legal problems were better, but not his health. He needed a second surgery to put the screws back in.
"We allege that it's a cost-cutting measure," said Robin Flores, Mosiniak's attorney. He's suing Corrections Corporation of America, or CCA.
"CCA is more concerned about its corporate dollar than it is its duties and governmental role," Flores said.
CCA is contracted through the county to house inmates. Flores said the company also has a duty to treat inmates fairly and humanely.
"We're not in Iraq. We're not in Afghanistan. We're here in the United States," said Flores.
CCA denies any wrongdoing, and since our first story in September, has been through court motions and sorting through evidence to prove their side.
There has been no settlement in the case, and ones like these can take a year-and-a-half to resolve.
While Mosiniak waits, he hopes this makes things better for other inmates.
"Put a stop to it," the former inmate said. "That's what I'm gonna fight for."
Mosiniak's doctors tell him he'll need more surgeries in the future.
CCA released a statement noting its facilities have teams of nurses, physicians, and guards who are trained in responding to inmate first aid.