ALBUQUERQUE (CN) – Prison medical staff claimed a man was “faking” heart failure and copious bleeding from the mouth, though even his jailers knew he was dying, the late man’s mother claims in court.
Jesus Marquez died in the San Juan County Detention center on March 3. His mother, Olga Salazar, focuses most of her allegations against “Nurse Katie,” whose last name is not known.
Salazar claims, among other things, that jail medical staff had referred for months to treat her son’s diabetes;
– that jailers called repeatedly, and unsuccessfully, for immediate medical attention, due to his inability to breathe or stand, gray skin, and “grayish/white” lips and tongue;
– that Nurse Katie refused to believe Marquez’s blood pressure was as low as a test showed;
– that though blood from Marquez’s mouth was “literally dripping to the floor,” Nurse Katie said, “that he probably bit his tongue or something;”
– that Nurse Katie blew off jailer’s frantic concern for Marquez, including one jailer’s comment, “You can’t fake your blood pressure. You can’t fake your skin color;”
– that despite obvious signs that Marquez was dying of heart failure, “Katie and the other medical staff left Jesus and returned to their offices,” after which a jailer said, “They are ignoring their Hippocratic oath. Everyone can see he is dying right now;”
– that when an ambulance was finally called, Marquez died on the way to the hospital.
Salazar seeks punitive damages for wrongful death, negligence, and cruel and unusual punishment. She is represented by Gregory Tucker with Tucker, Burns, Yoder & Hatfield, of Farmington.
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