St Louis Prison guards 'forced inmates to have gladiator-style fights with other prisoners for entertainment' -
Inmates in St Louis have revealed that they were forced to fight each other in order to entertain prison guards.
Now thirty inmates want to join the existing group of eight who have filed a federal lawsuit against the prison guards at the Medium Security Institution on Hall Street as they claim they were baited into fighting one another for their keeper's amusement.
Five guards were named in the suit and they were said to be the ones who forced inmates to fight in 'gladiator-style combat'.
The Fox 2 News reports that the lawsuit came out of a city investigation into inmate abuse.
One victim: Former inmate Derrick Rodgers is one of the growing group of convicted criminals who is now suing the city for $150million
In one instance, an unidentified inmate was seen leaving another prisoner's cell with his clothes completely shredded and in tatters.
'Individuals who were put in solitary confinement were not supposed to have contact with any other inmate but what was happening was the guards were actually taking inmates out of the cells, placing them in cells with other inmates, and forcing them to fight each other,' attorney Daniel Brown told CBS St. Louis.
The civil rights lawsuit against the city was filed last year asking for $150million in punitive damages based on the claims of eight men who either have been released from the Medium Security Institution- known as 'the Workhouse'- or who are still serving out their sentences.
The list has grown dramatically, however, but the city does not feel it adds any weight to the claims.
'From when he first got in there he was telling me he was doing fights and stuff like that,' LaDonna Pitchfort, whose son Frankie Edwards is serving a sentence in the prison.
The suit names two former guards- Dexter Brinson and Elvis Howard- who have since been suspended, and the other three guards are only identified by their last names as the inmates do not know their first names.
That has not deterred Mr Brown and his clients, who feel they have evidence on their side.
'We know that that is not true of course because we got the video and at the end of the day, once jurors see that video, I think they’ll be with us,' Mr Brown told CBS.
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