Oklahoma county settles inmate death suit for $12.5 million

ENID, Okla. (AP) — Officials in northern Oklahoma have agreed to pay $12.5 million to settle a lawsuit over the death of an inmate in a restraint chair at the county jail.

According to court records, the Garfield County Board of Commissioners took the action over the June 8, 2016, death of 58-year-old inmate Anthony Huff.

Huff was arrested for public intoxication. Jail staff placed him in the restraint chair , where he was later found unresponsive and pronounced dead.

The lawsuit accused officials of negligence and of violating Huff’s constitutional rights. In a statement Monday, the board says it “deeply regrets” Huff’s death and the settlement is “reasonable under the circumstances.”

Former jail administrator Jennifer Niles pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter in Huff’s death and was sentenced to 55 hours in jail.

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