Lawsuit Accuses Western Virginia Regional Jail and Wellpath of 'Excruciating' Pain Leading to Death
Written by: Sam Orlando
ROANOKE, VA - A federal lawsuit was filed today in the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia, by Deborah J. Lemond, as Administrator of the Estate of Lisa M. Lemond, her late daughter. The suit accuses Western Virginia Regional Jail Authority, healthcare provider Wellpath LLC, and several individual medical staff, of causing Ms. Lemond's death through deliberate indifference to her serious medical needs.
The suit, alleging violations of constitutional rights under the Eighth and/or Fourteenth Amendments, names Wellpath LLC, Western Virginia Regional Jail Authority, Dr. David C. MacDonald, Sarah A. Eves PA-C, and Registered Nurses Dawn Thorne, Janis Lilley, and Heather Abney as defendants.
The complaint asserts that Ms. Lemond, while in custody at the Western Virginia Regional Jail, experienced serious medical conditions including Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) and a severe rash which covered a significant portion of her body. It alleges that her pleas for medical assistance were ignored for several days and she was not provided with proper medical care despite showing visible signs of severe illness.
The lawsuit contends that this alleged "deliberate indifference" to Ms. Lemond's medical needs led to her untimely death. The complaint details the harrowing experiences of Ms. Lemond, noting that the deliberate indifference to her condition caused her "excruciating and unnecessary pain and suffering," both physical and mental. The suit further states that this denial of care culminated in Ms. Lemond's premature death.
The lawsuit seeks damages for the loss of support and services, including lost wages of the decedent; loss of companionship; mental pain and suffering of the beneficiaries and Ms. Lemond herself; and medical and funeral expenses charged to Ms. Lemond's estate.
Andrew Lucchetti of Halperin Law Center, LLC, representing Ms. Lemond's estate, filed the lawsuit on behalf of Deborah J. Lemond. Mr. Lucchetti and the plaintiff have demanded a trial by jury on all issues triable as a matter of right.
Lucchetti is seeking to hold the defendants, jointly and severally, accountable for the alleged unconstitutional and tortious conduct that led to Ms. Lemond's premature death.
The Western Virginia Regional Jail Authority, Wellpath LLC, and the individual defendants have yet to respond to the allegations.
This case marks another in a series of legal actions nationwide alleging negligence and deliberate indifference by prison health care providers, putting the spotlight on a critical issue of inmate rights and healthcare standards within the American penal system.