A sister of a Cobb County jail inmate is suing Cobb County Sheriff Neil Warren, several unnamed sheriff’s deputies, WellStar Health System, the Cobb County Community Service Board and six medical professionals.
Reginald Wilson died of dehydration in a Cobb County jail cell on Dec. 29, 2018, having spent nine days in a state of psychosis while in custody on a single probation violation, according to a lawsuit filed by his sister, Monica Peltier.
Peltier, as Wilson’s next of kin and the administrator of his estate, wants at least $10,000 in damages and legal fees from the 10 defendants, alleging they were negligent in their duty of care, resulting in Wilson’s death, which could have been avoided.
The wrongful death lawsuit was filed in Cobb County Superior Court on Dec. 9, 2019 and has been assigned to Judge Kimberly Childs. It demands a jury trial.
The sheriff’s office does not comment on pending litigation, spokesman Glenn Daniel told the MDJ.
Wilson, 54, was picked up by an ambulance on Austell Road near WellStar Cobb Hospital on Dec. 20, 2018, rambling at the time about “angels, demons and how the world goes round,” Peltier’s lawsuit states.
Records show Wilson had a two-minute seizure while in triage, where staff had to use restraints on him as he was aggressive and displayed psychotic behavior.
He was discharged into the custody of sheriff’s deputies and booked into the Cobb jail that night on a single probation violation charge. Just over a week later, he was dead from dehydration.
Wilson’s WellStar medical records, attached to his sister’s lawsuit, show he told Cobb Hospital staff he had been having difficulty for years, was depressed about his life and wanted help on the night of his arrest.
Wilson’s official cause of death was ruled as “dehydration due to bipolar disorder” in the Cobb medical examiner’s report.
He was noted to have a “medical history of bipolar disorder with psychotic features, drug abuse and hypertension,” with hypertension and coronary artery disease listed as other significant conditions related to his cause of death.