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Friday, May 13, 2011

Family of Deceased S.F. Inmate Earl Brown Jr. Demands $10 Million

Posted By on Fri, May 13, 2011 at 4:23 PM

click to enlarge Did jailers use excessive force on an inmate who bit a cop? - MATT SMITH
  • Matt Smith
  • Did jailers use excessive force on an inmate who bit a cop?

The family of Earl Brown Jr., an HIV-positive man who died in jail last March, has sued San Francisco for $10 million.

The suit alleges that sheriff's deputies "assaulted and battered him ... causing injuries which resulted in (his) death," after he was arrested for biting a police officer who'd responded to a disturbance at Leticia's in the Castro.

According to a federal complaint filed May 2, Brown argued with cafe patrons and was asked to leave. He refused. Police were called. He struggled, before biting one officer. He also fought with jailers and was put in a special "safety cell," where he died of a heart attack soon after he was booked.

Sheriff's deputies used "unreasonable, unjustified and deadly force and violence," on Brown, who was high on methamphetamine at the time of his heart attack, according to a coroner's report cited in the lawsuit.

A Sheriff's Department spokeswoman referred us to the City Attorney's Office. Spokesman Jack Song said his office had not yet been served with the lawsuit, and therefore he could not comment. An attorney representing the

Brown family had not responded to a message requesting comment at press

time.

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