Parents Of Calif. Inmate Who Died After Being Pepper Sprayed File Lawsuit

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – The parents of an inmate who died after being pepper-sprayed are suing officials at a Northern California prison.

The lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court in Sacramento alleges that officials violated state law and the civil rights of Joseph Duran and of his parents, Steven and Elaine Duran.

It says the 35-year-old mentally ill inmate was pepper-sprayed and left unattended inside his cell at Mule Creek State Prison in Ione a year ago. It says Duran, who breathed through a tube in his throat, pulled out the tube and that prison officials ignored pleas from medical staff to reinsert it.

The lawsuit names 13 prison officials and the Amador County coroner.

A prison guards’ union spokesman declined comment, while a message left with the corrections department was not immediately returned.

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