Guard Who Beat Him Was Finally Charged With a Felony ─ 2-1/2 Years After the Attack
Litroy Bolton, who was the victim of a brutal, videotaped attack by a guard at Cook County Jail in January 2014, will speak publicly about the attack for the first time at a news conference tomorrow. The guard attacked Bolton after he refused to move into a cell that the guards had just said had recently been occupied by an inmate who was “under quarantine,” presumably for having a communicable disease.
Bolton’s attorneys say that the Office of Professional Review, the Cook County Sheriff’s organization charged with investigating and disciplining guards who violate people’s rights, intentionally dragged out their investigation of their employee’s attack, attempting to exhaust the victim’s time under the statute of limitations to take legal action against the guards.
A suit was filed against the guards in May, the first effective legal action taken against them during the 2-year-old case. A copy of the suit, Litroy Bolton v. the Sheriff of Cook County, et al., can be found here. Videos of the beating can be viewed and embedded from here and here.
Mr. Bolton is a 29-year-old North Lawndale resident, father and care-giver of his 9-month-old boy. He is represented by Vince Field and Cindy Tsai of Loevy & Loevy Attorneys at Law. Mr. Bolton was arrested for a marijuana charge, which was thrown out by the judge at his preliminary hearing.
According to the suit, “As captured by video, Officer [Miguel] Ortiz forced Mr. Bolton to the ground, and while Mr. Bolton lay prone and defenseless on his stomach, his hands behind his back, Officer Ortiz repeatedly punched Mr. Bolton in the head and face. Even after additional correctional officers intervened to handcuff Mr. Bolton, and despite the fact that Mr. Bolton never once resisted any of the Defendant Officers, the video shows Officer Ortiz partially lifting Mr. Bolton off the ground and slamming his head and upper torso into the concrete floor….”
“While being transported to Division 8 of Cook County Jail by an Unknown Defendant Correctional Officer, Mr. Bolton overheard Defendant Officer Ramos and/or the officer transporting him to Division 8 inform Defendant Officer Ortiz that Defendant Ortiz could not place Mr. Bolton into a certain cell because that cell was under quarantine. Defendant Officer Ortiz responded with something to the effect that he planned to place Mr. Bolton in that cell regardless of the cell being under quarantine….”
When the defendant officers failed to heed Mr. Bolton’s requests not to be put in the potentially dangerous cell, he asked to speak with a sergeant. This insistence on his constitutional rights enraged Officer Ortiz and prompted him to physically beat Mr. Bolton in retaliation.
“The assault by Officer Ortiz was witnessed by multiple Defendant Officers, including by Defendant Officer Ramos. Despite the fact that Mr. Bolton was not resisting in any way, and despite the fact that he was clearly being injured by Defendant Officer Ortiz, at no time during this attack did any of the Defendant Officers intervene to prevent Defendant Officer Ortiz from unjustifiably assaulting and injuring Mr. Bolton.”
Attorneys charge that several jail guards destroyed some of the physical evidence of their crimes. Also sued are officers with the Cook County Sheriff’s Office of Professional Review, who allegedly gave blatantly false, official reports of the contents of the jail videos before the court forced their release.
“At no time after completing any of the reports described above did any correctional officer or other member of the Jail staff, including Defendants, intervene to prevent the filing of these false reports or to correct them.”
Loevy & Loevy is one of the nation’s largest civil rights law firms, and over the past decade has won more multi-million dollar jury verdicts than any other civil rights law firm in the entire country. Last November, Loevy & Loevy successfully obtained the release of the dashcam video of Laquan McDonald’s shooting death at the hands of Chicago police.