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Former jail inmate suing Nueces County, corrections officer for 2019 assault

The suit claims that the guard punched the inmate more than 20 times, resulting in the inmate being hospitalized for over three weeks.

NUECES COUNTY, Texas — A federal court has cleared the way for a lawsuit filed by a former Nueces County Jail inmate who was hospitalized after being beaten, allegedly by a former jail guard.

The former inmate is suing the individual guard and Nueces County. Attorney Chris Gale is representing the inmate.  

"We should be in, at least in the perspective of trying to resolve things, you know, short of going to a jury," Gale said. "When you go to a jury like I did today, somebody's going to win and somebody's going to lose. And that's how it is. So part of the reasoning or the logic is that we should try to avoid this thing, especially if there can be a reasonable resolution."

The lawsuit against the County and the jailer alleges that in July of 2019, inmate Adan DeLeon was assaulted by former corrections officer Bobby Joe Benavides. The County is being sued for being aware of the assault and acknowledging it only after it was determined that the beating was recorded on video and that there was an attempt to delete the video.

"With most cases that you have against the County, and especially if you're dealing with the County, the jail in particular, most of the time you're going to be dealing with use of force within the jail," Gale said. "Also failure to provide medical care, which seems like a typically arising set of facts from the Nueces County Jail."

The lawsuit says that the guard punched the inmate more than 20 times, resulting in the inmate being hospitalized for over three weeks. He was treated for an eye socket fracture, a nose fracture, two fractured ribs, and several cracked disks on his neck.

Benavides, who according to the lawsuit was known around the jail as "The Punisher," was fired last year just before being convicted of assault, tampering with evidence and official oppression.

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