Jail Inmate Allowed to Continue Lawsuit Over Miscarriage

May 13, 2015

By Keffer Hirschauer LLP

Last month, Federal Judge Van Bokkelen of the Northern District of Indiana ruled that Nakehba Hooper can proceed with her lawsuit against the Sheriff of Porter County and five unnamed Porter County male officers.

Ms. Hooper was incarcerated in the Porter County Jail in October and November of 2012 (D.E. 1; 2:14-cv-358). She was prescribed prenatal medications because of a certain medical condition. She asserted that without proper treatment, her condition can cause serious illness, brain damage, and death of her child in utero. Id. Ms. Hooper alleged in her complaint that she began having pregnancy complications while incarcerated and requested assistance, but did not receive a response. Id. She was eventually transported to the hospital, and subsequently suffered a miscarriage. Id. While the defendants, including the Sheriff, argued that Ms. Hooper’s complaint should be dismissed and was without merit, Judge Van Bokkelen disagreed and denied their motion, in part, in a fifteen page written decision. He permitted Ms. Hooper to proceed forward on certain claims including a wrongful death claim against the Sheriff for the loss of her child. Unless otherwise settled, the matter will now proceed forward to trial.

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